By on October 30, 2009

I'm gonna make a change... for once in my life... (

I’m not going to tell you incentives are going away. They’re part of the game, but they can be better managed than they have been in the past

GM Sales maven Susan Docherty in the WSJ.

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17 Comments on “Quote Of The Day: Don’t Hate The Playa, Hate The Game Edition...”

  • avatar

    When the Cruze finally gets to market I’m betting 90 days later 0% and multi thousand dollar rebates follow.

  • avatar

    And rapid depreciation as usual.

  • avatar

    Whatever her salary is, it’s too much.

  • avatar

    the game of subsidizing??

  • avatar

    It’s a game, and it’s stupid. I would suspect that 90% of new-car buyers leave the dealer feeling like they could have spent less money for their new car. This leads to much of the animosity between buyers and dealers.

    It is the majority of the reason that Saturns sold so well (when they had decent product).

  • avatar

    “…they can be better managed than they have been in the past.”

    Name one thing at GM the above quote cannot be said about.

  • avatar

    GM has destroyed their position. No one will believe any price that’s put on the hood. Everyone now goes in with “ok, what’s it really cost?”

    Absolutely no credibilty.

  • avatar
    Robert Schwartz


  • avatar
    John Horner

    What, Susan still works at GM? Considering her little house of horrors resume in her GM years it just figures that she keeps getting promoted.

    Cadillac Europe
    US Western Region Sales Manager

    Everything she has touched has been a disaster.

  • avatar

    Yes, Mr. Schwartz, and —

    The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,
    Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit
    Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
    Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it

  • avatar

    What, Susan still works at GM? Considering her little house of horrors resume in her GM years it just figures that she keeps getting promoted.

    This is how GM works. The GM wunderkind are rotated, very quickly, through all sorts of divisions in hopes they’ll garner experience. What they do pick up is a penchant for making themselves look good and not having to be around when their poor decisions finally bear fruit. Meanwhile, the kids get moved further and further up the ladder until they slam hard into the career path of someone more powerful, or they stick around too long and something finally sticks.

    If you watch the career of many of GM’s more spectacular flame-outs, they all follow this pattern. It’s so built-in to GM culture that they can’t bring themselves to see how it practically institutionalizes the Peter principle.

  • avatar

    Everything she has touched has been a disaster.

    The Peter Principle at work. Of course GM’s entire management structure can be described that way.

  • avatar
    John Horner

    “Of course GM’s entire management structure can be described that way.”

    As the old saying goes: In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king. That explains Lutz. Only most of the things he touches end up a complete disaster (Australian Pontiacs, half-baked Sky/Solstice & Saturn’s Astra come to mind). Some of his efforts turned out pretty well like the Malibu. In a healthy company someone who’s big decisions turn out to be massive failures most of the time would be a pariah. But at GM, Lutz has been right a couple of times. That makes him a god there.

  • avatar

    The problem any automaker has is that they get paid for the vehicles as they are invoiced to the dealers and paid, no tickey, no laundry.

    Then when a vehicle is sold by the dealer the dealer fronts the cash to make the deal happen and then waits for the mfg. to pay the money in maybe 30 days. So I believe that many dealers are wondering as they sell vehicles and front the rebate money. How long is it going to be before GM and Chrysler actually send them the money. If I was dealer I’d be very careful about how much of “MY” money is going out the door and putting vehicles in customers driveways that I might not ever get back. I’d like to see a confidence poll of GM and Chrysler dealers on that one.

    Another thing is that as rebates shrink due to dealers concerns about this issue, they also allow the healthier mfg.’s to cut back on their rebates and use the cash to show more profit and build consumer confidence target their cash where it is most useful.

    Hey? How’s the Volt coming?

  • avatar

    She happens to be right about incentives. Originally designed to protect the integrity of the product, GM was to loose with them in the past. What resulted was incentive buying, meaning that unless they were offered consumers didn’t buy. That did not protect the product value. So now what happens? Do you play your hand with the new GM that it’s not necessary to wholesale anymore, and hope it works, or do you start the vicious cycle all over again, for fear of volume?

  • avatar

    Can’t make up quality perception (reality) fast enough, market share is going to hell in a hand basket (witness share of C4C), what else you going to do other than put cash on the hood and ask the customer to please take it? I am convinced that these people have no clue about breaking this downward spiral. Their only answer is to take yet another GM lifer and throw them to the head of the campaign. This by definition is insanity. I wish to thank both Presidents Bush and Obama for perpetuating this disaster in the making! In the past when a company failed it filed for bankruptcy and its management team was cleared out for the sake of a fresh perspective. Spin off the profitable Latin American and Asian divisions to the US Taxpayer now and let the rest of this mess die!

  • avatar

    Do I read the american new car market like this.
    The dealer buys(?) a car with their selection of options/colours fitted from the manufacturer, in the hope of selling same vehicle to a prospective buyer. If that buyer wants something different they have to source that vehicle from another dealer who had the forsight to build the car to that specifications. Then the manufacturer discounts the car direct to the buyer (cash on the hood) so that he/she pays less money to the dealer that has already bought the car at a discount? Have I got that right, because I’m used to the system here where the dealer has some floor stock but the majority of vehicles are built to customer order, shipped to the dealer, the dealer does his prep for $$, does the paperwork (rego etc..goverment $$). There is none of the dealer only having this vehicle with these options for sale. Except for euro imports, if you order a special, that’s about 6 months away.
    Please correct me If i’m wrong in my assumptions.

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