A former US treasury executive has hit out at General Motors’ former CEO Rick Wagoner and the executive culture at the firm.
Steven Rattner, who was chief advisor to the US treasury when it stepped in at GM, said he was shocked at how poor the management and financial situation was at the firm.
“Everyone knew Detroit's reputation for insular, slow-moving cultures,” he said. “Even by that low standard, I was shocked by the stunningly poor management that we found, particularly at GM, where we encountered, among other things, perhaps the weakest finance operation any of us had ever seen in a major company.”
Rattner said decisions were always made at the firm using PowerPoint and executives would never mix with regular members of staff.
“At GM's Renaissance Centre headquarters, the top brass were sequestered on the uppermost floor, behind locked and guarded glass doors,” he said. “Executives housed on that floor had elevator cards that allowed them to descend to their private garage without stopping at any of the intervening floors (no mixing with the drones).”
Rattner was also scathing of Wagoner and accused him of having a “friendly arrogance”, which filtered back through the company. He also said Wagoner didn’t think it was right that he should step down from his role.