Recently, Cadillac has named a new head, announced plans for a flagship sedan, and unveiled the start of a new branding scheme. All while also planning a much more autonomous structure that will see its headquarters leaving Detroit and corporate parent GM’s shadow in favor of New York City’s SoHo neighborhood.
These moves have not been without their detractors and apparently the criticism hasn’t been lost on Cadillac’s new leader Johan de Nysschen. He just took to Facebook and posted the following rant to his friends.
Bertel Schmitt of the Daily Kanban is either one of those friends or merely got tipped to the post and released it for the rest of us to enjoy.
The words of Mr de Nysschen:
This past week we announced a new flagship car to be built in Detroit. No reaction. Announced a product offensive which will give Cadillac coverage of 95% of premium market segment . Slight twitch of the left eyebrow of the industry media. Announce new nomenclature system, to denote hierarchy and accommodate expanded future portfolio. Every armchair marketing expert has ten opinions to share. Fortunately, I do not determine strategy based on the unfiltered observations of people who do not have a 360 degree understanding of the problem. Announce that Cadillac is to be established as separate unit of General Motors, to be more autonomous and focus on the premium business. Emails from GM retires suggesting that is the dumbest idea since the Cimmaron. I quietly wonder if any of them had a hand in creating that masterful monument to product substance.
To all the indignant souls out there- this has nothing to do with Detroit. And certainly has nothing to do with where I choose to live. It has everything to do with creating an awesome car company. We must develop corporate processes, policies, mindsets, behaviors, attitudes, which are right sized for Cadillac and which are immersed in focusing on and responding to what it takes to win in the premium segment. No distractions. No side shows. No cross- brand corporate considerations. No homogenized lowest common denominator approach. Just pure, unadulterated, CLASS. To create this change in approach, Cadillac must put distance between itself and the parent. Not because there is anything wrong at GM- the company is getting its act together like you won’t believe – but because Cadillac needs to FOCUS. And if we don’t move, nothing will change. Physical relocation forces a change to processes. Now, it’s true, we could achieve that, by moving just about anywhere. But if you have to choose a place to set up an iconic global luxury brand, you could indeed do worse than New York. So, Detroit fans, I love your city, the success of Cadillac will be your success, the majority of our jobs remain in Detroit, and as we grow, these will increase too. But other than that – don’t mess with me.