Toyota Arrogance; Will it Never End?

Believe it or not, I was once a fan of Toyota and their manufacturing techniques. Toyota, like many other manufacturers in Japan, was taught quality techniques by an American Engineer and Statistician, Dr. W. Edwards Deming. Before worked I in the Lemon Law, I taught Dr. Deming’s quality techniques at manufacturing firms all through the nineties. Japan’s highest prize for quality is called the “Deming Prize”. I am not a Toyota fan any more.

This breaking news from an article in Automotive News is just one more example of corporate bad behavior. “Toyota spars in U.S. court over internal documents.” They do the same thing when we try to apply the California Lemon Law. They really bring new meaning to the expression “stonewall”.

It’s interesting and saddening to see a once great organization lose its way, to lose those characteristics that define is true strength. Toyota for many years was an icon of quality manufacturing. Some people say it is a natural phenomenon, the rise and fall of any organization, of civilizations, even of a country. It begins and ends with ethics. They began with the desire to hold the highest quality standard and ended in court. If I were a less positive person I could get depressed.

The California Lemon Law was enacted to bring ethical standards to an industry steeped in arrogance. They operated as though their size along gave them license to be contemptuous of the individual owner. This behavior will never win in the long run. Better to do the right thing than become another footnote in the history or manufacturing.

I would be really interested in how you who read this feel about this deplorable situation.

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