Mr. Toyoda, A Class Act, Saves Face
Mr. Toyoda, a Class Act
Telling the Truth, what at a New Concept. While taking a break yesterday afternoon I saw a Class Act on TV. It was the President of Toyota, Mr. Toyoda, grandson to the founder of the company. He came to the United States to speak to Congress about the 3 recalls Toyota is in the middle of. No one forced him to come here; he could have sent someone from his company. Yet, he chose to come and speak on behalf of himself and his company.
He started his speech in English, and though I would have thought with the money his family has had and his upbringing that his English would have been better. But I soon realized that the fact that he didn’t speak English really well didn’t matter at all. It was what he said that made all of the difference.
He first introduced himself as the grandson of the founder of the company. He went on to say that he wanted to apologize for any deaths caused by any car that his company made. He was genuinely sincere. You could actually see the concern, on his face and that he was sad for the victims and their families. He took complete responsibility.
He continued on about how his company has always stood for quality, and he felt that because the company expanded at too fast of a pace in the last couple of years, and that they did not keep up with the training of employees, concerned with customer service. He again asked for forgiveness. He said this was being addressed right now.
He went on to say that his company has the same name as his and if they do something wrong it is as though he did something wrong.
He then continued his speech addressing what his company, Toyota has already done to correct the situation, and what they are planning on doing in the future. Toyota has already set a date next month for a Meeting, inviting a representative of the US to participate. They will discuss how the recall will be handled going forward and what the company will do to basically make sure these things don’t happen again.
All in all by the time this man, Mr. Toyoda finished his speech, there was hardly anything for Congress to ask him. He covered everything, and quite satisfactorily, before they had a chance to basically attack and devour him.
A smart man, this guy, Mr. Toyoda is, not only did he come to the US on his own, he anticipated everything Congress would ask him, and answered the questions before they were asked. He set the pace of the meeting. Mr. Toyoda didn’t just give us a bunch of half-baked excuses; there was no doubt on my part that this guy meant everything he said. He basically took the wind right out of Congresses sails.
The Japanese have always had a sense of Dignity, which seems to be a part of their inner being. This Mr. Toyoda, came across as a man with so much Class, so much Honor, that not only was it believable it was amazing to see such a site in the halls of Congress much less Washington DC. By the time Mr. Toyoda was finished with his speech, he had taken complete control of the situation.
There was no blaming anyone else. I thought to myself, “Oh my God, when is the last time I saw anyone testifying in front of any Congressional committee and actually sound so sincere and truthful”? Then I answered myself, “Ollie North”, and that’s it.
I think the people who attended this Congressional meeting, planned a witch hunt, and when it didn”t happen, they were in shock and probably a little angry because Mr. Toyoda was more than one step ahead of them the entire time. There would be no yelling, ranting or raving. He gave them all the answers they would have been asking him and looking for, without letting them, humiliate, belittle and embarrass him for the sake of the TV camera’s and some votes back home.
Do not get me wrong here. I am a Patriotic American. No one can change how I feel about my Country. But once in a while I like to see someone take this Congress on and actually beat them at their own game, and yesterday, Mr Toyoda did just that.
Mr. Toyoda tells the truth. What a Concept!