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 management was formed to investigate and recommend appropriate action.

Their conclusion was the Japanese had 8 people paddling and 1 person steering, while the American team had 7 people steering and 2 people paddling.

Feeling a deeper study was in order, American management hired a consulting company and paid them a large amount of money for a second opinion.

They advised, of course, that too many people were steering the boat, while not enough people were paddling.

Not sure of how to utilize that information, but wanting to prevent another loss to the Japanese, the paddling team’s management structure was totally reorganized to 4 steering supervisors, 2 area steering superintendents and 1 assistant superintendent steering manager.

They also implemented a new performance system that would give the 2 people paddling the boat greater incentive to work harder. It was called the ‘Rowing Team Quality First Program,’ with meetings, dinners and free pens for the paddlers. There was discussion of getting new paddles, canoes and other equipment, extra vacation days for practices, and bonuses. The pension program was trimmed to ‘equal the competition’ and some of the resultant savings were channeled into morale boosting programs and teamwork posters.

The next year the Japanese won by two miles.

Humiliated, the American management laid off one paddler, halted development of a new canoe, sold all the paddles, and cancelled all capital investments for new equipment. The money saved was distributed to the Senior Executives as bonuses.

The next year, try as he might, the lone designated paddler was unable to even finish the race (having no paddles), so he was laid off for unacceptable performance, all canoe equipment was sold and the next year’s racing team was out-sourced to India.

Sadly, The End. (but keep reading!)

Here’s something else to think about: GM has spent the last thirty years moving all its factories out of the US, claiming they can’t make money paying American wages.    TOYOTA has spent the last thirty years building more than a dozen plants inside the US.

The last quarter’s results:
TOYOTA makes 4 billion in profits while GM racks up 9 billion in losses.

GM folks are still scratching their heads, and collecting bonuses…


CAN TRUMP TURN THIS AROUND IN OUR FAVOR?  What do you think the Japanese Prime Minister said to him yesterday?  And what did Trump say BACK? 🙂

This entry was posted in economy, Trump. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to TRUMP and TOYOTA

  1. bocopro says:

    In the first half of the 20th century, unions brought about significant changes and crucial benefits to many American workers. They stimulated a steady rise in the standard of living by bringing reason and sanity to counter corporate greed and abuse of workers. In general, they made life better for everyone.

    In the second half of the 20th century, unions created an unproductive adversarial relationship between management and labor which in turn created huge numbers of administrative positions which union members had to pay for through their dues and consumers had to pay for through increased prices. In general, they priced US industry out of the world market and triggered a slow but steady decline in product quality.

    By the beginning of the 3rd millennium, unions had morphed into parasites which victimize the society at large and force manufacturers to relocate to countries with lower tax and labor rates just to remain viable. Today’s unions have mostly degenerated into little more than corrupt special-interest groups interested in nothing more than self-preservation through extortion, intimidation, and political terrorism.

    For many unions, the primary goal is exorbitant is exorbitant wages and benefits for members to facilitate funding through dues so that they can support political machines geared toward promoting their selfish interests and longevity, particularly for their bloated and top-heavy managerial structure. Worker loyalty is guaranteed by the ridiculous wages, golden retirement packages, and other compensations they extract from employers through shake-down tactics.

    Unions began by acquiring and ensuring more rights and privileges for American workers and society in general than any governmental, societal, or religious authority ever created by men. But as with all good things, the wealth and power attracted devious, greedy, corrupt, and unethical tyrants who prey upon their own members and tyrannize anyone who resists their insidious machinations, turning a benign benefactor organization into a bloodsucking malignant tumor.


  2. John M. Berger says:

    bocopro is SPOT-ON! I once worked in a UAW plant, the most antithetical [work ethic] environment I’ve ever worked in. I currently drive a NISSAN XTERRA (9 years no problems whatsoever), assembled in Tennessee, all components except the transmission MADE IN AMERICA! While I agree, in principal, with Trump’s views on our domestic brands being made off-shore, he will certainly have his work cut-out for him. The article, per the following link, has been around for a while but I think that it fits here:


  3. fredd says:

    Yes, unions are a cost of doing business here in the US, but union-companies see no benefit after paying these costs. In actuality, they see a negative impact from union work rules. Unions are now simply a main driving force in inefficiency. The union’s sole purpose is to collectively bargain for less work, but more pay and benefits for their rank and file; the very definition of inefficiency.

    Unions served us well in their early years, but got drunk with power and money. Like giving car keys and a bottle of Wild Turkey to a teenager and expecting good things.


  4. Sparky says:

    I hope President Trump can turn around the mess DingleBarry is leaving behind. The man who calls himself Obama just passed 527 pages of new regulations in one day as a parting (bleep) you America gift. DingleBarry is such an evil man. I pray for him. He’s lost. Fortunately, none of what DingleBarry is doing is legal and probably can be just de-funded and forgotten.
    I’ll go read what happened between Trump and the Japanese Prime Minister next. Just had to share what the Awful O did to America. *sigh*


  5. Sparky says:

    Ok, I read the article concerning President-elect Trump and the Jap PM. Quite frankly, that world-wide stuff is over my head. I rely on Hubby who has a much firmer grasp on such things to advise. One must know how to delegate in order to make informed decisions. *wink*
    Also, anything penned by a Yahoo! journalist is highly suspect although I will admit that this article seemed to be written by an adult (for once).
    Blessings. ~:)


  6. cube says:

    Bocopro knows much more about union negotiations that I do. I have a lot of catch up to do, but so far, I agree.

    Sparky: We have Nissan XTerras in common. I gave my first one to my youngest daughter and got myself a second one. Well, it only has 7,000 plus miles on it, and little girl wants it already. I say, dream on, little one.


  7. Mal says:

    Bocopro has it exactly right. I use to get so upset during the ’50’s, ’60’s and ’70’s watching the UAW go on strike in August, just prior to retooling for the next model, and then have the company cave in to them and add the cost on the new models. In the early 2,000’s Chrysler was taken over by Mercedes (remember Daimler-Chrysler?). Their cars were very successful, but due to the huge obligation of past retirees benefits, they kept losing money so dumped it and now Fiat owns them. Its so sad. Walter P. Chrysler must be rolling over in his grave!


  8. edbonderenka says:

    Mal, Ford had the same obligations and due to good management has prospered.
    I was a union guy (UAW) for years.
    I’ve gotten offers since to work in a union environment, as if that was desirable.
    My answer every time is, “Why should I work in a place that needs my expertise, but must bring in two or three other workers to get me in on a Saturday after having gone through the seniority list?”
    I don’t want my pay scale capped by a union rate.


  9. Baysider says:

    I have low expectations for what Trump can do. Of course, the MSM is trying to drill him out before he takes the oath. But he does have a party to work with and ISN’T the Hildebeast.


  10. Bay, I’m excited over the picks today!


  11. Baysider says:

    I’ll have to check that out, Ed. I am processing olives to cure my annual batch, and making an offer on our eventual retirement place! Busy day. 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s