Interesting WSJ comment from this recent piece about planned management changes in North America.
Jim Lentz, Toyota's head of North American sales, said Wednesday it was “premature” to talk of a shake-up in Toyota's U.S. operation. He was responding to an article in the Detroit News that suggested Toyota would overhaul management, perhaps by combining sales and manufacturing operations under one executive.
Speaking on the sidelines of the New York Auto Show, Mr. Lentz said the company's manufacturing operations in Erlanger, Ky., and its sales offices in Torrance, Calif., work well together.
“All of the North American presidents get together and discuss challenges,” he said. “There are no surprises.”
Someone named Tim Phelps wrote:
As a twenty-two year employee of Toyota and actually building the first Toyota vehicle in North America, I welcome the management change. Toyota's Japanese Managers know how to successfully run the company and they have proved that TPS works very well. Why has every one else tried to copy the system? The Japanese place a high value on problem solving and kaizen, something their American counterparts thought they as individuals could deliver all the answers. Toyota NA really began to slide after the introduction after hiring of too many ex-GM mid and upper management gurus over the last fifteen years. Japan has finally recognized the mistakes of giving too much power to individuals who stray from the system and look out for individual interests instead of the product and company. Now we can get down to business and build the company up instead of neglecting it.
See? Toyota isn't perfect…
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