Ldr/531 Examining a Business Failure

Examining a Business Failure
In February 1983 General Motors Corporation and Toyota Motor Company of Japan announced a joint venture in Fremont California. They would use a plant formerly owned by GM and produce a compact car comprised of a Japanese engine and transmission with a U.S style body. The venture would produce 12,000 new jobs in the U.S, 3,000 in the production process, and 9,000 in supplier and related industries (F, 1983).   The joint venture was the New United Motors Manufacturing Inc. NUMMI, it would help GM managers get familiar with Toyotas’ approach to lean manufacturing, and Toyota would learn how US automakers handled human resources, the United Auto Workers (UAW), legal issues, regulatory, and compliance requirements, government relations, and other issues (Chappel, 2009).   The venture was successful for many years and the NUMMI plant became the model plant for other GM plants across the country. In 2010 the NUMMI plant was closed and 4,700 employees were left unemployed. This paper will explain how specific organizational behavior theories could have predicted or explained the ultimate failure of the NUMMI plant and compare and contrast how the leadership, management, and organizational structures contributed to the plants failure.
Organizational behavior is a field of study that investigates the impact that individuals, groups, and structure have on behavior within an organization (Stephen P. Robbins). When the NUMMI plant was opened in 1983, General Motors sent a group of managers to Japan to learn the work culture of the Japanese in Toyota city. The managers were shocked to see how efficient the Toyota plants were run because it was completely different from how the plants were run in the USA. The General Motor plants concentrated on quantity over quality and Toyota concentrated on quality over quantity. In the GM plants, the assembly line never stopped, and in the Toyota plants, the assembly line would stop to fix an issue as simple as...