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Ford vs. Toyota - a parable

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Here is a story that explains the reasons behind the need for a Big 3 Bailout

A Modern Parable.

A Japanese company ( Toyota ) and an American company (Ford Motors or any one of Big Three) decided to have a canoe race on the Missouri River
Both teams practiced long and hard to reach their peak performance before the race.

On the big day, the Japanese won by a mile.

The Americans, very discouraged and depressed, decided to investigate the reason for the crushing defeat.
A management team made up of senior management was formed to investigate and recommend appropriate action.

Their conclusion was the Japanese had 8 people rowing and 1 person steering, while the American team had 7 people steering and 2 people rowing.

Feeling a deeper study was in order; American management hired a consulting company and paid them a large amount of money for a second opinion.

They advised, of course, that too many people were steering the boat, while not enough people were rowing.

Not sure of how to utilize that information, but wanting to prevent another loss to the Japanese, the rowing team's management structure was totally reorganized to 4 steering supervisors, 2 area steering superintendents and 1 assistant superintendent steering manager.

They also implemented a new performance system that would give the 2 people rowing the boat greater incentive to work harder.

It was called the 'Rowing Team Quality First Program,' with meetings, dinners and free pens for the rowers.

There was discussion of getting new paddles, canoes and other equipment, extra vacation days for practices and bonuses.

The pension program was trimmed to 'eal the competition' and some of the resultant savings were channeled into morale boosting programs and teamwork posters.

The next year the Japanese won by two miles.

Humiliated, the American management laid-off one rower, halted development of a new canoe, sold all the paddles, and canceled all capital investments for new equipment.

The money saved was distributed to the Senior Executives as bonuses.

The next year, try as he might, the lone designated rower was unable to even finish the race (having no paddles,) so he was laid off for unacceptable performance, all canoe equipment was sold and the next year's racing team was out-sourced to India .

Sadly, the End.

Here's something else to think about: Ford has spent the last thirty years moving all its factories out of the US , claiming they can't make money paying American wages.

TOYOTA has spent the last thirty years building more than a dozen plants inside the US .
The last quarter's results:

TOYOTA makes 4 billion in profits while Ford racked up 9 billion in losses.
Ford folks are still scratching their heads, and collecting bonuses...
post #2 of 13
AMEN!!! This is why I no longer buy American. My lease is up in June on my Nissan and sad to say I will not replace it with anything American.
post #3 of 13
That is so true, a lot of American and Canadian bussiness run with so many steering the boat, and nobody rowing
post #4 of 13

We own a Toyota Corollla (2006) and wouldn't trade for all the Ford cars they would give us. Our Corolla is getting 38-40 to the gallon!
post #5 of 13
Ha, I thought so too until I bought a Ford truck. Ford trucks are assembled in the U.S. and Canada. Toyota just took its first financial hit too.
post #6 of 13
Amen is right! I've bought 2 cars in my "adult" years & they were both foreign, best cars I've ever had, both run like champs (well except for the dead battery this morning) but that's not Acura's fault! I will never buy an american made car ever again which in my "teen" years I had american cars and they all broke down so amen for foreign made cars!!!
post #7 of 13

sounds like my company right now, almost as many managers as workers
post #8 of 13
I'm quite happy with my Ford.

Also, Ford did not take bailout money.
post #9 of 13
Had more Fords than anything. I've had cars that were good and cars that were bad equally between all of my foreign and domestic cars, everyone produces lemons on occasion.
Also, when you buy from forgeign car companies, don't you feel even the slightest bit of guilt? (US Peeps)

We already live in a country where outsourcing is the norm, and yet so many people still feel the need to send more money to foreign companies.
A lot of already retired people from some of the big US companies (not just auto industry) have lost the pensions they worked hard for and are now trying to find work just to make ends meet.
post #10 of 13
[quote=Arlyn;2531728]Had more Fords than anything. I've had cars that were good and cars that were bad equally between all of my foreign and domestic cars, everyone produces lemons on occasion.
Also, when you buy from forgeign car companies, don't you feel even the slightest bit of guilt? (US Peeps)

Guilty, no...just in my experience with cars, I prefer foreign because they seem to run better & last longer. I'm sure there are a few lemons produced by foreign makers but I must have gotten lucky. My mom also buys foreign & her honda runs like a champ. My b/f is a Ford lover he would die for Ford if it came down to it, so maybe it's just a matter of preference & what works best for you.
post #11 of 13
My '92 Honda Accord (made in Ohio), with 93,000 miles on it, has never needed anything more than routine maintenance. The car I bought before this, a 1988 Pontiac Sunbird, needed a new drivetrain with less than 30,000 miles on it. Will I ever buy American 'Big Three' automobiles again? No, no, never, never, uh uh uh!!!! Feel guilty? Are you kidding? They are merely reaping what they've sown.
post #12 of 13
Guilty, no way. This will be the last car we can buy, we will be retiring in a couple of years and it has to last and be reliable. How about the American car companys feeling guilty that the cars they are producing have a hard time lasting until they are paid for?
Before the Nissan we had 4 brand new Chevs. 2 Tahoes and 2 Avalanches all three had major problems before hitting 40,000 miles. Both of the Avalanches had transmission trouble. This Nissan has had not one problem. Many of my friends and family have Toyotas and other foreign cars with over 100,000 miles and going strong. I can't afford to feel guilty.
post #13 of 13
Originally Posted by Arlyn View Post
Also, when you buy from forgeign car companies, don't you feel even the slightest bit of guilt? (US Peeps)

When the American car companies can come up with a car that equals or exceeds the quality and gas milage of a Toyota, then I may consider it. So no, I don't feel guily at all with my Toyota. Besides, I drive 2 hrs to work each day and need a reliable car with very good gas milage!
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