Friday, September 12, 2014

Smear Job or Indictment? The Rise and Collapse of Boeing's Corporate Culture

Al Jazeera pulls the wings off Boeing's 787 to reveal the "new Boeing" where profit comes first, even at the expense of quality. 

There was a time when "Boeing" meant the essence of quality.  From the B-17 to the B-52, and the magnificent history of the "7" series - 707, 737, 747, 757 and 767.  And then something changed and it began in Boeing's corporate culture. 

The company built on its quality, Washington state workforce, turned on its workers, beat up their union and the State government.  Boeing decided to outsource assembly work to the Third World, a.k.a. Charleston, South Carolina. 

Ordinarily I wouldn't post a documentary this long but, on watching it, the reality sank in that this is the face of today's corporate culture and we all need to be aware of that.   As for me, I've pretty much given up commercial flying but if I do have to travel, it sure as hell won't be on a Boeing 787.


Edstock said...

Scary. It would be interesting to know what Alan Mulally's opinion is. He was president of Boeing Commercial Airplanes until 2006, and had worked on the 777.

It looks like a new crew of executives really screwed the pooch, especially when you see what an amazing job Al went on to do at Ford, after Bill Ford Jr. asked him twice.

The cost-cutting management of Boeing is a disease that has infected countless other corporations in a destructive race to the bottom.

The Mound of Sound said...

I suppose it's scary, Ed, but my main feeling was disappointment. Like you I grew up with Boeing jets. DC-4s to Viscounts to 707s and the transition was complete. 747s Air Canada, CP, WardAir, BritAir, Lufthansa, Air France, Quantas, various American carriers - what a terrific jetliner. Now the company has chosen to take a turn for the worse and we're left with the 787 Dreamliner.

I knew when Boeing pulled up roots and started assembling in Dixie that the standards of the Everett workers would be lost. It's mildly infuriating.

Edstock said...

Let alone the B-52. The -G and -H models are still flying, and next year, the type will have been in service 60 years.

Before you know it, Boeing will be getting its electronics from Lucas.