Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Living On Luck 

If the airline business weren't as poor as it is now, Boeing would have lost many more orders for its new and troubled airframe program. The company is straining credibility and trust with its customers and investors by a more than two-year delay in building its new 787. It seems that everything has gone wrong from management through insufficient numbers of fasteners and inability of subcontractors to turn out parts on time. The travesty raises a question of how far a company can push its stakeholders before they give up and go elsewhere. Fortunately for Boeing, there aren't many other places for customers to go. It may not be this way for much longer, however.

From a PR perspective, the program has been a botch for quite some time. Boeing had painted a bright picture of the new technologies and materials in the plane that save weight and fuel, but it is clear that it hasn't yet grasped how to manufacture with them. I wouldn't want to be the corporate communicator tasked with explaining the latest delay.


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