When comes one of the foremost automobile figures, the name of Henry Ford, will be recited and inserted in the scene. The man is the story of rag to riches and made an enormous contribution to the automobile industry. He is also one of the many names written in the famous motivational book “Think and Grow Rich” contributed by Napoleon Hill. Henry Ford is the person who inspired Adolf Hitler to make sure that every German can own a car, which led to the creation of Volkswagen. His status in the automobile industry is unequivocal; however, he still becomes a polarizing figure in the automobile industry.
According to the John and Horace Curator of Transportation Bob Casey, “Henry Ford didn’t take a job because he knew how to do it and the reason he took a job because he didn’t know how to do them, and they were opportunities to learn. The learning will be trial and error, and it is a bold way to learn.
Henry Ford had become the foremost figure in the automobile industry; however, he does not come from an avid automobile family as he is born to a farmer family. The courageous way of him learning for a job by trial and error had started in his father farms as he organized other boys to build rudimentary water wheels and steam engines. Henry Ford learned about full-sized steam engines by becoming friends with the men who ran them. He taught himself to fix watches and used them as a textbook to learn the rudiments of machine design.
These fascinations led him traversing around one company to another before finally taking the job as a night engineer with Edison Electric Illuminating Company, where he took the opportunity to learn about electricity. Due to his willingness to learn and master independently, he became a chief engineer in the same company. He also had an enthusiasm for working on his own rather other for somebody else.
His persistence parallel with fervours of working on his own and with his vision had led him to persuade a group of businessmen to back him in creating his own company. His investment had failed in the first and second time. Using his trial and error method, he had successfully established his third business, which had become one of the successful family-run automobile companies till today Ford Motor Company.
With his persuasion on his successful venture Ford Motor Company, he also identified and attracted outstanding people who believed in his vision. With the collaboration of sight and exceptional talent, he created the Model A, the company’s first car model. He and his team continuously make some significant improvements to the first car model, culminating in the launch of the Ford Model T, which had become a massive success for the Ford Motor Company. The Model T become successful as the ease of handling, maintaining and handling on the rough road is the hallmark of his model.
The success of Model T had led to a significant increase in the production line. Due to these, a new plant was built in Highland Park, Michigan, and he and this team had been relentless in creating a method of increasing production with lower costs. Henry Ford borrowed the idea from the watchmaker, gunmaker, bicycle makers and mixed it with his concept to make it possible. Due to the repetitive nature added with the massive workload, the plant workers resist it and to counter these, and Ford had decided to double their wages to $5 per day. A brave move but significant to keep the employee morale high. Furthermore, he also gave the workers option to buy the same cars that they had been made at lower prices.
On the production of the automobile, Henry Ford had created a tremendous impact in the US at that time. Most Americans can buy a car as the Ford Model T price is lower and sufficient for the masses to purchase. As Henry Ford had made a considerable stride in the automobile production line, he had decided to buy all the investors of Ford Company as he grew tired of their constant interference. These had made Henry Ford become the sole owner of Ford Motor Company.
From there, where his polarized opinion of him had started. Ford had named his son Edsel Ford as the President of Ford Motor Company, but Henry Ford runs things around and makes the final decision on the Ford Motor Company. Every car model can have its upward and downward trend evidence in today model also. When a company like Cryles and General Motors had come up with a stylish design relevant to the current time , the Model T that had been successful had been obsolete. However, Ford overconfidence in his judgment had ignored these trends. After the decline of Ford Motor Company to the 3rd best motor company, Ford decided to make the necessary changes to his car design.
Henry Ford totalitarian style of management is no longer the successful formula. Still, before he relinquishes his grip in the company that he had made, he and his team had come up with his great innovation in the automotive V8 engine, which had become famous even today. Henry Ford, in the beginning, had kicked out the investor from his company due to their interference. However, he finally buckled in another interference in the form of the United Auto Workers Union. Due to the Great Depression, many workers wages were reduced, and the company needs to lay off. United Auto Workers had an aversion to these and decided to fight against them; Ford retaliated in intimidation and violence before finally signing the union contract favouring the automobile workers.
Henry Ford had pionerred the automotive production line in making many cars with lower cost. His model had created a great impact on life of American during that contemporary era; however, his failure to adapt to the current trend of automotive model design nearly had cost his company in profits. His totalitarian style also led to some criticism, which led to polarizing opinions on him, especially the way he handled the workers union.