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On a Clear Day You Can See General Motors Paperback – May 1990

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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Avon Books; Reissue edition (May 1990)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0380517221
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380517220
  • Product Dimensions: 17.5 x 10.7 x 2.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,482,882 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


Published without the cooperation of John De Lorean, this account written by De Lorean after his resignation from General Motors in 1973 brings to light shocking disclosures about the corporation's questionable inner workings.

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Format: Paperback
DeLorean's account of GM shows how GM had departed from Sloan's masterplan less than a decade after the grand architect of the then largest company in the world passed away. While My Years with General Motors was still seen as a bible internally (it is an excellent book) it left enough room for interpretation that none of the principles were really lived and applied.

Some of the main troubles of the company, as described by John Z. DeLorean are dealer problems (the dealer body previously having been a main strength of GM), the lack of market initiative (GM lapsed into a reactive state, where it would simply follow successful segment moves of its competitors), the lack of initiative internally and a terminal case of groupthink and self selection of a certain type of executive. Add to that a very disfunctional relationship with labour, press (the handling of Ralph Nader after his publication of Unsafe at Any Speed brought about most of the negative impact, much more so than the book itself) and the impression that customers are gullible and a scene for the slow and relentless decline of the decades later is set.

In many ways it shows how Sloan's principles derailed just like some of the fundamental guidelines of Henry Ford (as set out in
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By Mr. J. Pacey on 28 Oct 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Been looking for this book for ages,very interesting.No wonder GM went pearshaped.Came from our friends over the pond very quickly
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 9 reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Maverick General Motors executive skewers GM management 23 Jan 1999
By Tom Gregg(greggth@umdnj.edu) - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Excellent book detailing the failings of GM. Mismanagement, inefficiency, illegal tactics and blatant disregard for the public interest are described. This book ranks with Ralph Nader's work. De Lorean describes his rise from Packard to Pontiac division of GM, where he made a failing division successful, then to the Chevrolet division, where he greatly boosted profits through sound business practices. He was then promoted to the "14th Floor" at GM, where he was a good candidate to become the head of GM. But he gave up. He could not stomach all the problems that he saw. Instead, he left GM to set up his own company. Good book to read if you are interested in why big corporations act as they do. It reveals the inner workings of GM. It is broadly applicable to many corporations. A classic.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
More than just De Lorean. 22 Nov 2008
By M. Fierstein - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
John Z De Lorean is far more than just the name sake to his car.

John Z De Lorean is quite possibly one of the most intelligent and organized people that ever worked for GM.. ever. And if he would have been alive today, and been able to see through the clouds at GM, GM could have been profitable. But their own undoing, is their own work.. he just staved off the inevitable.

Opening the book, you expect to hear about his own car company...

But it delves into operations, his thought process, how he ran two divisions at GM. He talks openly about how he turned errors and problems in the company into positive cash making operations.

Nearly everything that he was put in charge of would turn to gold, through his smart and knowledgeable background and something else that didnt exist at GM.. common sense.

This book.. absolutely parellels the problems GM was facing 30yrs ago, with the problems of today.

A fantastic book.. that deserves to be read, and re-read hundreds of times over.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Mail A Copy To Congress 12 Feb 2010
By Patrick Sullivan - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I read this book decades ago. My Father had a copy, and told me some of the stories regarding General Motors. This book is not very well written, but the message is a good one. GM had become a massive bureaucracy. The entire management is focused on how to please other mangers. No one cares about product development, or how the plants are running. Its all about making a good impression with the boss. There is one story where a guy rents a crane, so he can get a fridge put into a superior`s hotel room. The fridge would not fit through the hotel door way. The word was out that this particular boss, enjoyed having some fresh fruit and cold beer before he went to bed. They made sure the fridge was full of fresh fruit and cold beer.
Later when Ross Perot went public with his complaints regarding General Motors, I had no problems believing his story. Ross Perot`s comments regarding the bureaucracy of GM, is the same story that Delorean makes in this book.
This book is also a great fit with Alfred Sloan`s book on General Motors. You can see how GM started off successfully, and changed into a bureaucratic nightmare.
Still a relevant read even today 13 Nov 2013
By Bill Clarke - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
DeLorean certainly forecast the coming bankruptcy of GM in this book. For anyone fascinated by automobile production, this is a good read. Given DeLorean's managerial insights, the book is almost a managerial textbook, but it reads like a novel.
Great Classic ! 2 Nov 2013
By Douglas Mazzola - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you love cars and are interested in the auto industrie's history, you will love this book. Great insight into John Delorean's rise through the ranks at GM. Also other Icons, such as Harley Earl are in the book. A must read for car enthusiast.
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