July 18, 2014

Ralph Nader Continues to Urge General Motors to Appoint an Ombuds

In a press release yesterday, the political activist urged GM to create an Ombuds program to avoid problems like the current recall of 28 million vehicles for faulty ignition switches--a problem that was known to some in the company as early as 2005.

Nader's press release is short:

The simplest solution to avert the culture of avoidance or coverup inside GM regarding their discovery of product defects is for the CEO to establish an independent Ombudsman office, authorized to receive, in total confidence, the assertions of conscientious engineers and other employees about safety defects without fear of retaliation or losing their jobs. The Ombudsman, outside the GM chain of hierarchical command, would report directly to the CEO. The CEO would then have the responsibility to follow up on the report and decide whether it is at a level of gravity to warrant triggering the federal regulation on reporting the discovery to the Department of Transportation. The company may want to introduce a monetary reward for reports by its engineers and other employees to the Ombudsman that could prevent death and injuries and save the company a ton of headaches and expenditures. Giving assembly line workers rewards for proposing more efficient ways to manufacture products has been a long time incentive program by many companies.
(PR Newswire.)

Related posts: Society of Women Engineers Magazine Article on OmbudsRalph Nader Says General Motors Needs an Ombuds.

1 comment:

  1. Pretty clear Nader is mixing the Organizational and the Classical model a bit here.
    His use of Ombudsman is telling in that regard.
    Still referred to by some as the man who destroyed GM, I wonder how open they will be to hearing from him?
    It would be great if GM went ahead and built a program, and maybe some in Congress and the Senate will require it.

    John W. Zinsser
    Principal- Pacifica Human Communications, LLC.
    Lecturer- Negotiation and Conflict Resolution Masters Program, Columbia University
    Senior Practitioner- Sports Conflict Institute