Henry Ford was one of the most brilliant entrepreneurs in creating the automobile assembly line, it was his controversial characteristics and unorthodox approach towards administrating the Ford Motor Company which resulted in the conglomeration of one of the most successful corporations in the world. At the turn of the century everything was booming! The growth of the economy and stock market increased the job opportunities as well as morals. As a result of this industrial revolution, out of the woodwork came a humble yet driven man, Henry Ford. Between the five dollar/day plan, his policies on administrating the company, and his relations with his customers, Ford was often presented as a suspicious character. This controversial behavior epitomized the success of the company, it did not lead to his own downfall as many suspect. The Anti-Semitic accusations, and the belief that Ford was taking advantage of his customers, were by far overshadowed by his brillianc!e and strong hand in running his company.
Of course, there were not always supporters of Henry Ford. If fact, there were many critics, critics who believed that Henry Ford was so controversial that it prevented the potential of Fords from becoming greater than it is today. By the mid twenties the Ford’s was already the worlds most successful automobile company, but their great reputation would soon decline. Fords $5/day plan for all employees signified the overwhelming success of the company. Many believed this success was short-lived with the new policies dealing with the workers which soon followed. With the need to increase production and lower costs, in the mid 30’s Ford cut all Ford worker’s wages in half.
Workers were expected to work faster, and harder. Department heads were ordered to ban all talking and whistling while work was in progress. All of this was a ploy by Ford to make sure he knew every move of his workers, he was very possessive. Secondly, Ford began to fire older workers and hire younge!r workers. His ideology was that the younger workers could work more productively and more efficiently. Which in turn would send more money flowing into his pockets. What resulted was quite humorous in fact. Black hair dye became a hot seller in the Detroit area . Older workers tried to disguise their age by dying their hair black. Ford’s manipulation of his workers was immoral...
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American Decades 1910-1919 New York: Gale Research Co., 1996.
A contemporary survey on the backround of Henry Ford, and the Ford Motor Company.
Collier, Peter. An American Epic. New York: Summit Books Co.,1987.
A chronological study of the political and financial success of the Ford family.
Lacey, Robert. Ford, The Men And The Machine. New York: Ballantine Books
A more personal study of the Ford family and the contraversy surrounding the success of the Ford Motor Company.
Marcus, Paul: Ford: We Never Called Him Henry. New York: Tom Doherty Associates Co., 1951, 1987.
A primary piece of literature related by Harry Bennett offering personal insights in the life of Henry Ford, including conspiracy and controversy.
“The Annals of America.” New York: Encyclopedia Britannica. Co., 1976.
A primary source referring to the financial success of the Ford Motor Company as well as the financial policies administered.
“The Great Depression” (no other info available) An interesting presentation offered by past employees of the Ford Motor Company re-telling the triumphs and demise of the Ford Motor Company.
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