/ General Motors, Industry, News / GM’s new CEO, Mary Barra, ready for big changes

GM’s new CEO, Mary Barra, ready for big changes

Linked In Share
GM’s new CEO, Mary Barra, ready for big changes

The major challenge facing the 52-year-old electrical engineer and Stanford MBA: How to continue breaking down silos and walls within the U.S. automaker’s historically dysfunctional and disconnected corporate culture and remake GM into a more collaborative and customer-centric enterprise.

When she takes the reins from Dan Akerson on Wednesday, Barra, a Detroit-area native and GM “lifer” who started as an 18-year-old intern in 1980, also will be expected to tackle some unfinished business. Among her tasks: Overhauling GM’s global brands, reviving and returning to profitability the company’s battered European operations, and fattening up profit margins, which lag those of major competitors.

GM under Barra is aiming to shift more vehicles to a handful of core platforms that will offer a greater degree of flexibility and parts interchangeability, thus reducing engineering and production costs. But that shift appears to be at least several years from completion. Barra has demonstrated her technical and financial chops in a variety of key jobs over the past 15 years.

Following a three-year stint as an executive assistant to then-Chairman Jack Smith and Vice Chairman Harry Pearce, she was tapped in 1999 to head internal communications, a role in which she helped GM repair relations with the United Auto Workers after a crippling strike in Michigan.

She then spent two years as an executive director in GM’s North American vehicle operations before being assigned in 2003 to oversee the launch of the Cadillac DTS and Buick LeSabre as manager of the Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant.

One criticism of Barra, according to a former GM executive who worked with her, is that “she was never in a job long enough to have much of an impact.” Several of the people interviewed asked not to be named because they still do business with GM.

Although she has not run a GM operating unit — a traditional stepping stone to the corner office — Barra in the past 10 years has headed three critical areas: Manufacturing engineering, human resources and, most recently, product development. She has made significant contributions in each job.

Her selection as GM’s next CEO could be “the most important decision that Dan Akerson has made,” said analyst and longtime GM-watcher Maryann Keller. “But you won’t know until she actually gets the job and appoints the people that she wants around her to help her finish a job that’s only partly done.”

Via Reuters

by Aurel Niculescu (my Google+) - Monday, January 13th, 2014 - filed under General Motors, Industry, News. Image credit: .
Linked In Share
Related Articles
Barra ceo GM


Discuss: GM’s new CEO, Mary Barra, ready for big changes

Leave a Reply















Inautonews Facebook PageInautonews RSS FeedInautonews TwitterInautonews Youtube Channel

Sign up to receive our email newsletter on your email. It's safe. No spam!

First BMW i8 spotted in New York
First BMW i8 spotted in New YorkThe first unit of the BMW i8 has been recently spotted out while cruising the streets of New York. BMW has officially announced ...
[VIDEO] See the BMW M4 Coupe’s brutal acceleration
[VIDEO] See the BMW M4 Coupe’s brutal accelerationA new video uploaded onto the web is showing the brutal acceleration of the impressive BMW M4 Coupe, the F82. I’m sure you all ...
Nissan Pulsar Nismo wants the FWD Ring crown
Nissan Pulsar Nismo wants the FWD Ring crownThe newest member of the Nismo family, the Nissan Pulsar, wants to become the fastest ever production front-wheel drive car on ...
[VIDEO] BMW M235i Coupe goes drifting in Cape Town
[VIDEO] BMW M235i Coupe goes drifting in Cape TownThe German based automaker BMW has released a new video with the impressive M235i Coupe which is shown in synchronized drifting, ...
Jaguar XE-S – first official image released
Jaguar XE-S – first official image releasedJaguar has released the first official image with the new XE-S which is showing the front fascia of the model in question. The ...
[VIDEO] Silver Ferrari LaFerrari
[VIDEO] Silver Ferrari LaFerrariOne of the most exclusive Ferrari gathering ever, the Ferrari Cavalcade 2014, has seen this impressive silver finished hybrid ...
Ferrari 458 replica looks like the real deal
Ferrari 458 replica looks like the real dealA replica of the Ferrari 458 has been recently spotted out while looking for a new owner, who will have to pay 50,000 GBP before ...
[VIDEO] Polaris Slingshot gets first promo
[VIDEO] Polaris Slingshot gets first promoPolaris has recently released the first promotional video for the newly unveiled Slingshot, which is showing the model in ...
Tesla’s Elon Musk to appear on ‘The Simpsons’
Tesla’s Elon Musk to appear on ‘The Simpsons’Even if you have global influence, world dominating power and incredible wealth, you’re not somebody until you make a guest ...
2015 Ford F-150 costs 26,615 USD
2015 Ford F-150 costs 26,615 USDThe North American based automaker Ford has recently announced the official price list for the 2015 F-150, which is now lighter ...
US: study sees drivers ready to give up control
US: study sees drivers ready to give up controlAutomakers, as much as technology companies, tout advanced autonomous vehicles as the next big leap for the still young ...
Recall roundup: Suzuki cars made by GM in South Korea
Recall roundup: Suzuki cars made by GM in South KoreaThe Japanese based automaker Suzuki has recently announced a recall for the Verona, which is basically an expansion of an earlier ...
2015 Honda Jazz was launched in Australia
2015 Honda Jazz was launched in AustraliaHonda has recently announced the official introduction of the 2015 Jazz in Australia, where the model in question can now be ...
Honda aims for record profit
Honda aims for record profitThe third biggest carmaker in Japan has increased its profit prediction to the highest level in seven years, riding the boost ...
2015 Mercedes-Benz GLA gets priced in the U.S.
2015 Mercedes-Benz GLA gets priced in the U.S.The 2015 Mercedes-Benz GLA is now available for order across the United States from 32,225 USD, for the base entry-level ...
Read more automotive news


2013 Frankfurt Motor Show Live Images

bmw i8 spotted new york 1
ferrari 458 italia replica 1
2015 honda jazz australia 1
cadillac ats-l china 1
buick envision 1
mercedes-benz c-class l china 1
lexus nsx trd 1
range rover sport svr 1
ssangyong korando rexton w 60th special anniversary edition uk 1
fiat 500l vans concept 1
lamborghini aventador tuning sr auto 1
2015 polaris slingshot 1

More automotive from inautonews
The first unit of the BMW i8 has been recently spotted out while cruising the streets of New York. BMW has officially announced the starting price of the impressive i8 across the United States but the model in question is still waiting for the 2014 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, in August, in ...
read more
Inautonews Editors Section
Hungaroring – the trip is worth every penny
Hungaroring – the trip is worth every pennyAll those who went to the Hungaroring for their first race on site had plenty of action to see. They will come back with high expectations, after a ...
PREVIEW – Hungarian GP 2014
PREVIEW – Hungarian GP 2014“The circuit is a decent measure of a car’s mechanical grip, due to the need of having good traction out of many slow corners. In terms of ...
Review – German GP 2014
Review – German GP 2014Taking Rosberg’s easy win out of the picture, the German GP was truly spectacular, full of wheel-to-wheel racing, some of the overtakes backfiring ...

Editors Section
Inautonews Editors Section
2012 Safest Cars list 2011 Safest Cars [Video] 2011 IIHS Safest Cars [Video] 2011 EuroNCAP Safest Cars 2010 Safest Cars [Video]

Latest in Safety Recall roundup: Suzuki cars made by GM in South KoreaThe Japanese based automaker Suzuki has recently announced a recall for the Verona, which is ... US: IIHS tests some small cars, surprise results insideAccording to the Safety Institute, the only car from about a dozen small vehicles to get its ...
Safety Section