GM's corporate culture under scrutiny

June 11, 2009 at 8:20 AM
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WASHINGTON, June 11 (UPI) -- The U.S. government's strategy for overhauling General Motors Corp. includes a shakeup of GM's corporate culture, a top White House adviser said.

"Addressing cultural issues is just as fundamental to our assignment as addressing the balance sheet or financing," said Steven Rattner who leads the automotive task force, The New York Times reported Thursday.

With its insular corporate culture, "GM has been kicking problems down the road for a long time," said Ron Bloom, who is part of the Treasury's team to save GM.

This week GM began to rearrange its corporate board, appointing former AT&T Chief Executive Officer Edward Whitacre chairman, a move backed by Rattner.

GM is also in the process of appointing four new board members.

CEO Frederick "Fritz" Henderson has made a few changes that show willingness to allow GM to morph into a smaller, more flexible company, the newspaper said.

He told executives to stop over-preparing for congressional testimony and asked for a rundown of decisions made in lieu of a previous practice that provided him a list of decisions yet to be made, the Times reported.

With $50 billion in taxpayer money at stake, "we're not going to fail. This is too important a company," Rattner said.

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