Henry Ford organized his company as a giant system for efficiently turning inputs into finished motor vehicles. His achievement was outstanding, in creating a technical system that produced millions of vehicles that could be afforded by the masses. Henry Ford was a farmer’s son from Michigan. In his late twenties he decided to become a mechanic rather than a farmer. In 1898 he set up the Ford Motor Company with eleven associates. The way Ford managed his car plants was strongly influenced by a belief that he could bring salvation and liberation to the world through machinery.
He believed that the industrial system was an extension of the logic of the human mind rational systems would lead to the best results. Unfortunately for Henry Ford, many of his assembly line workers did not share his enthusiasm for repetitive physical labour of the kind offered at his Detroit factory. Working for Ford not only meant repetition, it meant committing yourself to a system of harsh discipline while at work and to a lifestyle outside of the factory gate free from any malicious practice derogatory to good physical manhood and moral character. Ford was opposed to gambling, drinking alcohol, smoking and sex outside marriage.
He set up a sociological department to monitor the behaviour of his employees. As the company became more successful, Ford became more and more exacting, insisting that the organization run according to the system he created. Today, he might be described as being a control freak. He appointed people to be his immediate subordinates who were authoritarian. At the height of the purges of management, the sociological department was abolished and replaced by the more ruthless service department. Ford controlled by fear. He believed that humanitarian and social considerations had no place in the work environment.
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Within his own organization Ford regarded any sign of humanitarianism with contempt. There is altogether too much reliance on good feeling in their business organization. Mission, Values and Guiding Principles Ford Motor Company is a world-wide leader in automotive and automotive-related products and services as well as in new industries such as aerospace, communications and financial services. Their mission is to improve continually their products and services to meet their customer’s needs, allowing them to prosper as a business and to provide a reasonable return for their stockholders, the owners of their business.
Values, how they accomplish their mission is as important as the mission itself. Fundamental to success for the company are these basic values: People, their people are the source of their strength. People provide their corporate intelligence and determine their reputation and vitality. Involvement and team work are their core human values. Products, Their products are the end of their efforts, and people should be the best in serving customers world-wide. As their products are viewed, so are they viewed? Last is Profits, profits are the ultimate measure of how efficiency they provide customers with the best products for their needs.
Profits are required to survive and grow. Guiding principles, Quality comes first; to achieve customer satisfaction, the quality of their products and services must be their number one priority. Customers are the focus of everything they do. Their work must be done with their customers in mind, providing better products and services than their competition. Continuous improvement s essential to their success, they must strive for excellence in everything they do: in their products, in their safety and value and in their services, their human relations, their competitiveness and their profitability.
Employee involvement is their way of life. They are team; they must treat each other with trust and respect. The dealers and suppliers are their partners- the company must maintain mutually beneficial relationships with dealers, suppliers, and their business associates. Integrity is never compromised-the conduct of their company world-wide must be pursued in a manner that is socially responsible and commands respect for its integrity and for its positive contributions to society. Their doors are open to men and women alike without discrimination and without regard to ethic origin or personal beliefs. (Starkey& Mckinlay 1993).
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