The Wall Street Journal ran a cover story about Ford CEO Alan Mulally’s new "war room". The walls are covered with charts and photos, Projects are color coded based on priority. Perhaps he thinks he is Churchill during WWII.
The new CEO plans to cut the company’s number of brands down from eight to some unknown number, and give all the cars the company produces the "Ford feel". Sounds pretty non-specific.No one is buying the "Ford feel" now.
Mulally wrotes to Ford employees: "As demoralizing as a slide down may be, the ride back up is infinitely more exhilarating." Yes, if there is a ride back up.
As one director said to Bill Ford: "We don’t have a second chance. This is it."
The war room may be fine, but until Ford can prove it has models that can compete, especially with Toyota, Nissan, and Honda, in the US market, and improve share from teh 14% low the company thinks it will hit, color coded priorities are just a kid’s game.
Douglas A. McIntyre can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. He does not own securities in companies that he writes about.