I came across this insightful article recently by the author of American Icon: Alan Mulally and the Fight to Save Ford Motor Company just as Boeing’s new CEO was taking control. Author Bryce Hoffman suggested that CEO David Calhoun call Alan Mulally, the former president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, who pulled the company out of a major crisis after the 911 terrorist attacks and then went on to save Ford, for advice.
In both turnarounds, the key was Mulally’s “Working Together Management System,” which he described in detail and in person during this WLEI podcast interview with Jim Morgan, who worked with Mulally as a Ford executive and former COO of electric vehicle startup Rivian and leader of LEI’s Lean Product and Process Development initiative.
In this rare and revealing interview, Mulally explains:
- the role of a CEO during a turnaround,
- how to take a “people-first” approach to leadership,
- how to encourage people to share real information – good or bad,
- what he thinks about lean management principles and many other practical insights.