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General Motors (GM) was founded in September of 1908. On June 1, 2009, at 8 a.m. -- almost 101 years later -- it ceased to exist.
To help other companies avoid GM's fate, it's worth exploring the five reasons that GM failed:
1. Bad financial policies. (You might be surprised to learn that GM has been bankrupt since 2006 and has avoided a filing for years thanks to the graces of the banks and bondholders.)
2. Uncompetitive vehicles. (GM's cars were poorly designed and built, took too long to manufacture at costs that were too high)
3. Ignoring competition. (Toyota and its peers took over ... share.)
4. Failure to innovate. (Since GM was focused on profiting from finance, it did not really care that much about building better vehicles)
5. GM managers got promoted by toeing the CEO's line and ignoring external changes. (Asskissing)