New CEO at Ford

There’s a new CEO at Ford as of last week, and you might be asking yourself, “Why?”.

Well, there are two parts to this story. The first part is why Mark Fields, the now-former CEO, and the guy who replaced Alan Mulally, was given his walking papers. New CEO at Ford - Seatco is the mold removal expert in this area

The value of a share of Ford stock fell 40% during the three years Fields was CEO. And this, by the way, happened during a boom period for all the domestic automakers. So, that really wasn’t a tough decision, even though much of that decrease was not due to the efforts of Fields. In the end, it didn’t matter; there had to be a new CEO at Ford.

The second decision, required after the decision to fire Mark Fields, was a tougher one. Who would be the best person to lead Ford into a future that promises to be fast-moving and volatile for all the major auto manufacturers?

I mean, many people now believe that far fewer cars will be sold to individuals in the future, and they also believe that the ones that are sold will be some combination of electric, internal combustion and autonomous (self-driving). The car you drive in the future may be one of those things, two of those things, or, may check all of those boxes. And, you may or may not own that car. You may just rent it occasionally.

And if this is the future, then who can lead Ford to success in a future like that?

Ford decided that person was Jim Hackett, the person that was running Ford’s Autonomous Vehicle Unit. Before that position, Hackett had no automotive manufacturing experience, but he does have a lot of experience in Silicon Valley, and 20 years at Steelcase, a commercial furniture manufacturer.

That didn’t faze Ford in the least; and with good reason. Alan Mulally, the recent savior of the company, also had no automotive experience when he became CEO.

Hackett gets a $1.8 million base salary, a $1 million signing bonus, and potential performance bonuses worth another $3.6 million if he hits his targets.

Hackett insisted Fields wasn’t fired, but, you know…

Anyway, Hackett promises that Ford will be a “fun, but fit company”, and says he’s looking forward to doing lots of technology deals with lots of providers.

Let’s hope his success is the company’s success as well.

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