Part I “Car Manufacturers are Dinosaurs”
After the emission scandal VW shows three very clear signs of decline.
1. CEO does not take responsibility!
First reaction, we did not know and for sure the CEO Mr. Winterkorn had no IDEA!
What are the workers in VW supposed to think about a statement like that?
IF Success = CEO! - IF FAILURE = Workers?
This is the message headlined in any German and International newspaper on a daily basis over the last months, more to come. How will any worker of VW feel about his or her employer? Will talented people stay with an employer who separates in times of crisis?
2. The Board does not take responsibility!
Second reaction: “we fixing the problem BUT the Board had no knowledge of any wrong doing”.
Now a whole Board declined to be responsible. So it is not only the captain who leaves ship, the Officers do too. How will the middle layer of management feel about the message “not everybody is on the same Board to fix the Ship”. By now talented people will star asking themselves, do I still stick or begin to look around for new opportunities?
3. It takes months to come up with a solution!
We still waiting for a fix which is acceptable to important Markets ahh Clients.
Right from the start until today, did you ever have the feeling the crisis is managed?
The Governments and Clients – yes in that order - are presented with solutions. First round with US officials went straight out of the window not adequate by far.
We looking at months if not years of public bashing at the Brand, the people and the feeling of owning “The Car”.
I remember my surprise and relive when I joined SAP 1990 in Germany. I found myself eating with Board members in the same Cantina. Everybody was on first name basis, in Germany at that time unheard of. It created a feeling of togetherness. If we at SAP failed with functions not delivered or not working or to slow, we feed back to development. Raised the issue with development heads which was almost never needed. Not one is guilty = everybody is.
Severe problems hitting a Brand are like the Iceberg crashing Titanic. You see only 1/7 of it. It needs Captain and Crew seasoned with inner strength and deep knowing of how to act together to succeed in stormy weather.
But “inner” and “deep” knowledge, experience and trust are hard to get by in a time that is so busy 24/7. Ego and arrogance are bad advisors. We at AnanDao believe that kind of knowledge is hard to get by and can only be attained from Managers ready for the message.
„Both the Harvard Business School and Europe’s leading business school, INSEAD, have concluded, from research, that the two most effective business tools for twenty-first century executives are meditation and intuition.” (Mark Thornton, former COO in Investmentbanking, now Corporate Meditation)
Is VW the German Car Manufacturers creative enough to face coming challenges? Part II of III “Car Manufacturers are Dinosaurs”