There’s an on-going debate about institutions being “too big to fail.” General Motors declared bankruptcy and received TARP funding (troubled asset relief program). Then it released a “chapter 11” spot where the focus was on a new beginning– chapter 1. In the spot it acknowledges having too many brand extensions and that its new strategy is quality over quantity. In a relatively short time, GM repaid its TARP loan. GM CEO Ed Whitacre is pitching the brand’s reposition himself. The new GM is about “…putting people back to work… designing, building, and selling the best cars and trucks in the world.”
That’s an interesting choice of words (loaded statement). In the spot he makes an appeal to nationalism (“Americans”) and he’s linking it to “the best cars and trucks in the world.” Many Americans didn’t agree with bailing out GM (among others), but it’s very American to feel entitled to the benefit of the doubt. The first thing that comes to mind, personally, do I really believe GM is the best or that they could be? There’s a segment of the population out there that would agree, but I’m not old enough to remember the “glory days” when U.S. automakers dominated the market. I can respect the sincerity of Mr. Whitacre, but his message is lost on me. We’ll just have to wait and see.