Mendoza School of Business

Barra on recall: ‘Terrible things happened’

Published: March 18, 2014 / Author: Chris Isidore

The following is an excerpt from a CNN Money article that quotes Management Professor Kaitlin Wowak on GM’s recall. To read the entire article visit: Barra on recall: ‘Terrible things happened’

General Motors CEO Mary Barra gave her most critical statement yet on the automakers’ handling of a flawed ignition switch, calling it a tragic situation in which “terrible things happened.”

Barra, in a video taped for GM employees and released to the public Monday, said various congressional probes and even an criminal investigation into the recall shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone.

“After all, something went wrong with our process in this instance and terrible things happened,” she said. “As a member of the GM family and as a mom with a family of my own, this really hits home for me.”

Barra said because of the problems, GM is changing the way it decides and manages recalls in the future. She also said that the company has dedicated 50 employees in a customer call center to do nothing but handle phone calls about the recall.

GM’s latest recall could actually end up being a positive for the company, according to Kaitlin Wowak, a professor at Notre Dame who has studied recalls.

“The airbag recall gives GM an opportunity to show consumers they are willing to take action before consumers are harmed,” she said.

A similar article quoting Professor Wowak appeared in The Wall Street Journal.


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