AUDIO – Mornings with Ron: A Reuters Autos Summit tradition

November 3, 2009

A few years ago, there was a book out called “Tuesdays with Morrie.” At Reuters, though, we spend our Tuesday mornings during Auto Summits with Ron.

It wouldn’t be a Reuters Autos Summit without our yearly visit from United Auto Workers head Ron Gettelfinger … at the crack of dawn.

Gettelfinger is not one to loaf around and show up at our summit at a leisurely hour of, say, sometime after the sun rises. Oh no. Gettelfinger was scheduled to kick off our Tuesday slate of guests at 7:00 am. But by now we know better.

In fact, when coming into the building this morning sometime after 6:00 am, Gettelfinger was already in the lobby of the Detroit Chamber of Commerce building doing a radio call-in program on his cell phone.

The sun would rise shortly thereafter.

But despite the hour, Gettelfinger is always an interesting person to interview, as he has his eye on all parts of the autos industry. And he didn’t disappoint this year, either.

After a year like this has been, there is a tendency to want to sit back a little and let all of the seismic events sink in. But Gettelfinger sees the real challenges to the autos industry to be down the road.

 (Click here to hear Ron Gettelfinger’s comments)

New technologies, new hiring patterns and new financings will all be the order of the day for the next 10 years. So while this has been a rough-and-tumble year, the fun hasn’t ended yet, he suspects.

The Reuters Autos Summit runs through Thursday in Detroit and Paris and features a global slate of guests from the big manufacturers, dealers and suppliers.

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