Bob Dewar

June 25, 2009 9:46:36 AM PDT
Bob Dewar, former Ford Motor company plant general foreman, began bracing for the demise of the American auto industry over 30 years ago while working at the Cincinnati plant. His take on the current crisis? "I'm surprised it took this long," he says.

Dewar worked through the first recessional death threat to the US auto industry (from 1979-1982). And while a weak economy plays a significant role in today's crisis, Dewar believes years of poor management have finally caught up and effectively weakened the industry from the inside out. Because management ranked quantity above everything else, workers were treated inhumanely?viewed only as a 'human machine.' In turn, a battle between management and the union ensued and, inevitably, quality suffered. Dewar witnessed, firsthand, American cars become an international joke.

"When I began work at Ford, I quickly realized that nothing else mattered but numbers," Dewar recalls. "We sent out hundreds of defective transmissions but that didn't matter. As long as the transmission outlasted the warranty, there was nothing to worry about. Perhaps if management had concentrated more on quality and less on quantity, we wouldn't be in this mess."

Backed by years of management experience and witness to the inner-workings of a Ford Motor Company plant, Dewar examines:

· How Detroit opened the door wide to let foreign imports into our country to ultimately beat us at our own game

· The dehumanization of the American factory worker

· Why he believes management is to blame for the bad quality that caused an entire generation to lose confidence in American built cars

· The root causes of our current auto crisis

· The inner workings of the Ford plant? why he says it was more like a prison than a factory

Dewar, BS, MBA, grew up in the coal fields of Pennsylvania. He served in the U.S. Navy during the Cuban Missile Crisis, and, after being discharged, worked his way through Penn State. Later, Dewar received a full academic scholarship to the University of Southern California and earned an MBA. Prior to taking a job in the auto industry he held management positions at Avon Products and Procter and Gamble.

When Dewar went to the auto industry, he was shocked by the incompetent management, how people were treated, and the lack of quality standards in the manufacture of American vehicles. He firmly believed that at some future time the auto industry would simply collapse because of the way the industry was managed and the confrontational relations between the UAW and management.

He currently lives in Cincinnati and runs a successful packaging business with his wife and family.

For more information, visit www.asavagefactory.com.


Load Comments