Tuesday, November 25, 2008

What was the biggest mistake of the "Big 3 in Detroit?"

There has been a lot of talk about the various bailouts. Particular negative attention was given to the recent request by GM, Ford and Chrysler for a bailout as the CEOs arrived in three private planes. Obviously the costs of these flights - approx $20,000 per flight - was not much in light of the multi-million bailout deals they were pleading for. However, this one action has not only jeopardized their requests, but garnered an awful lot of ill will towards their companies as the time they can least afford it.

I wonder how much these CEOs brought in their marketing/public relations experts to help them with their overall strategy. It’s hard to imagine that any of these CEOs was really thinking when they made their decisions to fly separately in private planes. Why didn’t they think? Was it tradition, arrogance, short-sightedness? These discussions with Congress could have turned into a wonderful opportunity to gain funding, increased the number of Americans determined to “buy American” and positioned them at the head of the growing drive to be green.

We don’t know what the result of this big marketing/public relations faux pas is going to be, but we should all beware we lead from the front in the public messages we send out about our companies, if we want to come of this meltdown healthy and growing.

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