Ford Motor Company’s new appointment to the position of CEO, Jim Hackett, has come up with a 100-day action plan to bolster financial performance in the face of an industry-wide slowdown. The 62-year-old businessman has been asked by Executive Chairman Bill Ford to boost the speed at which the automaker makes decisions, and Hackett himself wants to focus the company even more on innovation. Both executives want to create a “flatter” management structure at Ford so that it “doesn’t feel the weight of hierarchy on every decision,” says Hackett.
The four objectives of Hackett’s 100-day plan as Ford CEO are:
- Re-evaluate Ford’s revenue opportunities, looking for new areas where the company can generate revenue as sales decline, while reviewing those spaces where Ford isn’t performing well
- Evaluate Ford’s overall fitness as a company, or “actually [find] ways to design things so that we don’t have redundancy and overlap,” Hackett says
- Re-evaluate the automaker’s capital deployment to ensure that Ford’s returns on investments (ROIs) are sound
- Renew Ford’s focus on innovation by ensuring that the automaker can become a leader in autonomous-vehicle technology and mobility services
Hackett cited Ford’s decision to exit the Japanese market last year as a step in the right direction, as the automaker was expending capital there with no hope of ever holding a sizable market share. The flatter management structure that the company is pursuing, evinced by how some of the top-most positions have been rearranged, is meant to help speed decision-making by clearing away some of the bureaucracy.
Hackett also seems most comfortable with a rather loose, informal corporate atmosphere. In the 1980s, he left Proctor & Gamble for Steelcase, he says, because “the culture was a little too stiff for me, and when my wife told me you could call the CEO of Steelcase by his first name, I was amazed that you could do that.”
(Source: Detroit Free Press)
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