Summary of American Icon

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9 Overall

9 Importance

8 Innovation

9 Style


It isn’t often that an insightful business history qualifies as a great beach read. Journalist Bryce G. Hoffman’s chronicle of the Ford Motor Company’s post-2008 turnaround transforms corporate restructuring into a sweeping drama, full of cliffhangers and vibrant characters. Hoffman, a reporter for The Detroit News, is a thorough historian who offers granular details on manufacturing capacity, labor negotiations, debt structures, and more. He’s an accomplished prose stylist with a novelist’s flair for storytelling. He recounts how Ford recruited Boeing executive Alan Mulally to pull the company from bankruptcy. Under Mulally’s leadership, Ford weathered the turbulence of the global financial meltdown and emerged as the world’s most profitable automaker. getAbstract recommends this true-life yarn to corporate strategists, product-development executives, financial officers, labor representatives, auto industry insiders and anyone who likes a compelling tale of will, brains and redemption.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How the once-mighty Ford Motor Company reached the brink of bankruptcy in the early 2000s;
  • Why chairman and CEO Bill Ford brought in new leadership from outside the auto industry;
  • How new CEO Alan Mulally dealt with the US government, Wall Street, the Ford family, unions, customers and Ford dealers; and
  • How he turned Ford into the world’s most profitable carmaker.

About the Author

Detroit News reporter Bryce G. Hoffman covered the Ford Motor Company and won awards from the Society of Professional Journalists, the Society of American Business Editors and Writers, the Associated Press and the California Newspaper Publishers Association.



The Edge
In 2006, the Ford Motor Company was on the brink of disaster. Ford, along with its domestic competitors General Motors and Chrysler, once dominated the US automotive market. But in the boom years of post-World War II America, the carmakers grew bloated and complacent. They weren...

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