GM Shuffles the Management Deck Again

By Brendan Moore

12.04.2009

GM logoIn another surprise move, General Motors has announced some senior management changes today, courtesy of Ed Whitacre, Chairman of the GM Board and acting CEO.

Nick Reilly’s previously-temporary move to Europe has now been made permanent as his new position is President of GM Europe. He is being replaced in Asia by Tim Lee, who is now the President of GM Asia out of Shanghai.

Bob Lutz is no longer in charge of marketing at GM; he has his old job back as an advisor to the CEO, with a brief that covers product development. Susan Docherty is now is charge of Sales and Marketing at GM, which has been re-combined into a single unit, as it was before Lutz took over Marketing just a short time ago.

Mark Ruess, who came out of GM Australia just recently, and has to be considered a dark horse for his new position, has been appointed President of GM’s North American Operations by Whitacre, a position previously eliminated earlier this year.

No successor to the vacant CEO position was announced today.

It is obvious that Whitacre is intent on jolting GM’s management into a state of high urgency and focus. Whether this strategy is a successful one remains to be seen.

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GM’s press release after the jump –

GM PRESS RELEASE

DETROIT, Dec. 4 /PRNewswire/ — To improve accountability and responsibility for market performance in North America and around the world, several key leadership changes were announced today by GM Chairman and CEO, Ed Whitacre.

“I want to give people more responsibility and authority deeper in the organization and then hold them accountable,” Whitacre said. “We’ve realigned our leadership duties and responsibilities to help us meet our mission to design, build and sell the world’s best vehicles.”

Mark Reuss is named president of GM North America. Reuss was briefly vice president of Engineering after leading GM’s Holden operations in Australia in 2008. Reporting to Reuss will be Susan E. Docherty, who is appointed vice president, Vehicle Sales, Service and Marketing operations. Also aligned under the new North American group will be Diana D. Tremblay, who is named vice president, Manufacturing and Labor Relations. Tremblay was most recently vice president of Labor Relations. Denise C. Johnson is named vice president, Labor Relations. Johnson was most recently vehicle line director and chief engineer for Global Small Cars.

Nick Reilly is named president, GM Europe. Reilly has been leading the restructuring efforts in Europe with the Opel/Vauxhall operations and will leave his role leading GM International Operations.

Tim Lee is named president of GM International Operations, overseeing GM’s Asia-Pacific, Latin America, Africa, and Middle East operations. Lee was most recently group vice president, Manufacturing and Labor Relations.

Bob Lutz remains vice chairman and will act as advisor on design and global product development.

Thomas G. Stephens remains vice chairman of Global Product Operations, and will now take on global purchasing in his organization, which will continue to be lead by Robert E. Socia, vice president, Global Purchasing and Supply Chain. Karl-Friedrich Stracke is appointed vice president, Engineering, reporting to Stephens. Stracke was most recently executive director of Engineering.

J. Christopher Preuss, vice president, Communications, will now report to Whitacre; he previously reported to Lutz.

The balance of the direct report staff remains unchanged and includes CFO Ray G. Young; John F. Smith, vice president Corporate Planning and Alliances; Terry Kline, vice president IS&S; Mary T. Barra, vice president Human Resources; Mike Millikin, vice president of Legal; and Ken C. Cole, vice president Government Relations and Public Policy.

Biographical information on all GM’s corporate officers can be found at www.gm.com/corporate/about/officers.jsp?evar10=gm_investor_corporategov_office rs#.

About General Motors: General Motors, one of the world’s largest automakers, traces its roots back to 1908. With its global headquarters in Detroit, GM employs 209,000 people in every major region of the world and does business in some 140 countries. GM and its strategic partners produce cars and trucks in 34 countries, and sell and service these vehicles through the following brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, Opel, Vauxhall and Wuling. GM’s largest national market is the United States, followed by China, Brazil, the United Kingdom, Canada, Russia and Germany. GM’s OnStar subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and information services. General Motors acquired operations from General Motors Corporation on July 10, 2009, and references to prior periods in this and other press materials refer to operations of the old General Motors Corporation. More information on the new General Motors can be found at www.gm.com.

Author: Brendan Moore

Brendan Moore is a Principal Consultant with Cedar Point Consulting , a management consulting practice based in the Washington, DC area. He also manages Autosavant Consulting, a separate practice within Cedar Point Consulting. where he advises businesses connected to the auto industry. Cedar Point Consulting can be found at http://www.cedarpointconsulting.com.

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4 Comments

  1. Wow, things are crazy over at GM these days. I guess Whitacre’s got some kind of plan. Hope it’s a good one.

  2. Lutz running marketing at GM wasn’t a good idea, anyway. He’s more useful as a product guy.

  3. Guess they figure that they will draw an ace sooner or later.

  4. Yeah, but they just keep getting jokers.

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