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I though this was a General Motors joke until I finished reading it. :shock: It's actually not even funny, it did knda stick in my craw...


Doug... 8)


THE GREAT CANOE RACE (a modern parable) .



A Japanese company (Toyota) and an American company (General Motors) decided to have a canoe race on the Missouri River. Both teams practiced long and hard to reach their peak performance before the race.

On the big day, the Japanese won by a mile. The Americans, very discouraged and depressed, decided to investigate the reason for the crushing defeat. A management team made up of senior executives was formed to investigate and recommend appropriate action. Their conclusion was the Japanese had 8 people rowing and 1 person steering, while the American team had 8 people steering an 1 person rowing.

Feeling a deeper study was in order, American management hired a consulting company and paid them a huge amount of money for a second opinion. They advised, of course, that too many people were steering the boat and not enough people rowing.

Not sure of how to utilize that information, but wanting to prevent another loss to the Japanese, the rowing team's management structure was totally reorganized to 4 steering supervisors, 3 area steering superintendents and 1 assistant steering manager. They also implemented a new performance system that would give the 1 person rowing the boat greater incentive to work harder. It was called the 'Rowing Team Quality First Program,' with meetings, dinners, free pens and scratch pads for the rower. There was discussion of getting new paddles, canoes, other expensive equipment, extra vacation days for practices and bonuses.

The next year, the Japanese won by two miles. Humiliated, the American management laid off the rower for poor performance, halted development of a new canoe, sold the paddles and canceled all capital investments for the new equipment. The money saved was distributed to the Senior Executives as bonuses and the next year's racing team was out-sourced to India.

(Sadly) The End

Sad, but oh so true! Here's something else to think about: Ford has spent the last 30 years moving all its factories out of the US, claiming they can't make money paying American wages. Toyota has spent the last 30 years building more than a dozen plants inside the US.



The last quarter's results: Toyota made $4 billion in profits while Ford racked up $9 billion in losses. Ford folks are still scratching their heads.

IF THIS WASN'T SO SAD IT MIGHT BE FUNNY
 

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well i now for sure that it cant all be high wage problems for for my cousin works at a toyota plant and makes close to the same wages as a line assembler at ford. ford maybe in the same canoe as gm
 

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Ken foster said:
I think the answer here is Unions.

Toyota to my understanding are not union plants, correct???

Ken F
True... All of the Japanese based assembly plants here in the US are non-union to the best of my knowledge. I have a few friends that work at the Smyrna TN Nissan plant. They make very good wages and bonuses, but work their tails off.... As it should be. The union plants pay great wages and the employees in general do NOT "work their tails off" but in turn get to give the union a cut of their money, and get to go on strike for 6 months every few years. That said... IF not for the unions things would be a lot worse for blue-collar America. I just wish they'd wake up and be more sensible. If the unions are ever 'broken' and go away... We are probably in deep ****, because no one will have to compete with union wages to hire or keep employees. Just my narrow minded opinion.

My sister-in-law is an HR manager for a large assembly plant in KY and is having an awful time getting folks to work and dealing with the Union. The Union "brothers" are not even allowed to point out who the slackers are. They are shooting theirselves in the foot, as if things don't change soon... The plant will be shut down and opened in another state, or worse...Another Country. How smart are the Union workers?... NOT TOO.

showdown mustang said:
well i now for sure that it cant all be high wage problems for for my cousin works at a toyota plant and makes close to the same wages as a line assembler at ford. ford maybe in the same canoe as gm
The big three are all in the same boat. A big part of the problem is the money that goes out to ex-employees.
 

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I had to set through some "toyota" stories while I was getting my "Six Sigma Greenbelt" for work. We had a few guys that worked for toyota there.

Supposedly the head guy for toyota years ago was forced to close a plant or something, he was so ashamed that he went into reclusion, but not BEFORE he found EACH displaced employee a job!! Supposedly they have never had a layoff since.

I have a few friends who are engineers for Ford in Detroit and the stories they tell of the things they are forced to accept because of beancounters is unbelievable.
 

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One thing that could be added to that parable - the GM crew also had 7 retired crew members in the water tied to the canoe that they had to drag along.
 
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