The automaker knew that the restructuring plan, which it internally referred to as “Turbo”, wasn’t going to make it any more popular, but in light of the 2009 financial crisis, it seems the company was at least expecting to receive praise for exercising foresight and axing slow-selling models before things got out of hand.
In a recent interview with Reuters, GM president Mark Reuss said the automaker had to make necessary changes to its business.
“We’re not here to make everybody angry,” he said, before adding that GM has to stop “investing money in things that don’t make money.”
The job cuts that came as part of the “Turbo” plan still took their toll, though. GM CEO Mary Barra had made a point of cozying up to politicians in Washington as Donald Trump began to take aim at the North American Free Trade Agreement. It was a smart plan, with potential changes to NAFTA threatening to affect GM’s bottomline on its trucks made in Mexico, but the job cuts in November have essentially reversed any inroads it had made.
As Reuters reports, one democratic representative said the job cuts have made GM “the most thoroughly disliked company in Washington.”
US president Donald Trump took aim at GM following the announcement of the restructuring as well and called on Mary Barra to allocate a different product to the Lordstown, Ohio plant where the Chevrolet Cruze was built.
At the time, Trump’s economic advisor Larry Kudlow said the president felt slighted by GM after reducing strict Obama-era fuel economy standards. “We’ve done this to help you and I think his disappointment is, it seems like that they kind of turned his back on him,” Kudlow said.