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GM Humming a different tune

Optimize Blog - February 25, 2010 - 0 comments

Regular readers of Zeitgeist will know that we’ve been following the erstwhile fortunes of GM and the attempts to resurrect The General to something approaching former glories.  
We might be forgiven for thinking that GM might recently have been enjoying some of the issues Toyota have been experiencing – particularly as prior to the spectacular demise of GM, Toyota had dislodged the US manufacturer from top spot in the auto manufacturing global stakes.
Unfortunately GM couldn’t stay out of the headlines altogether and today we get confirmation of the end of another GM brand – Hummer.  
Hummer’s demise is a result of GM’s inability to complete a deal with the Chinese company Tengzhong and a minority shareholding with Suolong Duoji.  GM have not given details other than to confirm their plans for working with dealers, customers and suppliers on an effective exit from production of the brand.
There were probably a few cheers over at ‘Friends of the Earth’ as the Hummer has been roundly criticized since its launch as one of the worst displays of excess and having a destructive carbon footprint of a size that SMART cars only dream about.  With some models weighing in at five tonnes and struggling to get fuel consumption into double digits, perhaps it is easy to understand some of this criticism.  Nevertheless, the vehicle range and brand has become quite iconic and perhaps the end of the brand yet again brings into focus the impact that this recession has had on the global economy and the changes that have been made in consumer decision making.
  They also know when to stop flogging the proverbial dead horse and other companies can learn valuable lessons here.  Companies need to understand their options, recognize that there are trade-offs and strategic choices to be made, they need to not prolong unviable options and make the tough calls appropriately.  By nature choice is an either/or scenario – from our experience too many companies take too long to makes those choices and often to the point that the choice is eventually made for them.  
Ultimately if you come to a fork in the road you have to choose to turn left or you turn right.  Trying to turn left and right at the same time will only leave you in a spin…

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