After seeing a bad phase, Ford Motor Co. seems to gear up in putting efforts towards progress. Ford has tapped Jim Hackett as its new CEO replacing Mark Fields. Bill Ford, the Chairman of Ford told CNBC that his company needs innovation. He said that they need to be quicker in their decision making, have clarity in their messaging and communication, and also need a leader who has transformed a company before. He added that his company is taking a hard look at the business, and also to the parts that create or don’t create value. Well, Ford’s new CEO is maybe the company’s new strategic move to ramp up its business.
Ford’s New CEO is a Football Lover
Before being crowned as Ford’s new CEO, Hackett got associated with the Dearborn, Michigan company last year to head Ford’s ‘smart mobility’ operations. Previously also, Hackett has gained experience to revive companies. When he was leading Steelcase, the office furniture maker company, he was forced to lay-off thousands of employees and boost the business. Certainly, he managed to do so by building a better collaborative culture and putting emphasis on product innovation.
Not only this; Hackett, 62, also helped in turning around the University of Michigan’s college football program that was in trouble during his brief job phase as the interim athletic director. Hackett has also played center for the team during his study days, that too, under the legendary coach- Bo Schembechler.
The new appointed CEO said that he has had a word with Mark Fields and they also plan to go on a football game in future; adding that Field’s has agreed to help him. After the company made the official announcement, Hackett said in a news conference that the future is not a fantasy. He added that in the rising tide kind of environment, he wants to see the company differentiate itself.
A Move Towards Autonomous Market
The company explained that this move is taken to accelerate a strategic shift for capitalizing on the emerging opportunities. Currently, the auto industry is getting shaped by various technological advancements. It is evident that Ford Motor Co. has spent heavily on the self-driving research. Despite this, the automaker has no expectations to see a fully autonomous vehicle under its name on roads by 2021.
When major automakers like Tesla and Mercedes are gearing up in the race of self-driving cars, Ford seems to lag behind. Regarding this aspect, the Chairman told CNBC that he is actually pleased with the progress his company is making. But there is always more that can be done and also speed is important. Unlike other companies, it can also be seen that the company is not talking publicly about its progress in the autonomous field. To which, Chairman Bill Ford says that they are not doing so partly because they want to make sure that when they do, their messaging is crisp.
Mark Fields' Tenure as the CEO
Evidently, during the three-year tenure of Mark Fields, the automaker company has seen only sluggish results and no growth. Even more, Ford Motor Co.’s stock dropped to a major 40 percent during his tenure as a CEO. Just about two weeks ago, the company held its annual shareholder’s meeting where Fields’ saw huge criticism for the company’s results.
What came off as a major blow for the centennial company was that recently the newest automaker in the Silicon Valley, Tesla surpassed the market capitalization of Ford despite a comparatively lower ratio of automobile sales.
Bill Ford’s Belief in Jim Hackett
Chairman Ford says that Hackett is a true visionary who will bring a unique and human-centered leadership approach; to the culture, products, and services; which will unlock potentials of the company’s people and the business.
The automaker company has also appointed three of its leaders for new roles under Ford’s new CEO-
Jim Farley- Executive Vice President and President of Ford Global Markets
Joe Hinrichs- Executive Vice President and President of Ford Global Operations
Marcy Klevorn- Executive Vice President and President of Ford Mobility
All the three new appointments will be effective from June 1.
Hackett’s Future Plans
Notably, the three major things that Ford’s new CEO plans to focus on are- sharpening the operational execution; modernizing the company’s business; and transforming Ford to meet the future challenges. He will focus on these three aspects along with Bill Ford as per a press release by the automaker company.
On his new role, Hackett said that he is excited to work with Bill Ford and his entire team, to create a more dynamic and vibrant Ford. He wants to focus on improving people’s lives all around the world. He also wants to create values for all the stakeholders of Ford Motor Co.
The new CEO believes that solving corporate problems is like a Rubik’s cube; you have to solve all the sides of the problem; not just one. Just after the announcement of Ford’s new CEO, the company saw an up-trading in stock at 1.4 percent.