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General Motors (Globalization, Sociology)
General Motors is a company with a long and rich history. It was founded in 1897, and from that time the company was developing and becoming more and more popular all over the world. In the last decades, the company became so big that several plants in the U.S.A. were not enough to provide people from all over the world with quality cars. That was the main reason to build the plants in other countries. The company owned more and more plants throughout the world; the process of manufacturing became widespread.
For the workers as well as for the company the process of globalization did not have any consequences. The sociological factor was the first. The General Motors company influenced greatly the culture and the way of living of those, who worked there. Building the plants the company provided people with job, financed such social projects as building a library or a school, and donated money for the poor. On the other hand, the plants were built in the poorest countries, where the level of living is much lower as in the United States. That is why, General Motors got more workers for the same price. The sum of money remained the same, as given for American plant, but due to the living conditions more workers were hired. Another feature of the plant in a poor country is that emloyees were working a lot not because they were eager to work, but because they were striving to save the job and the plant.
The reason is, if the plant is out of order, or the company does not need it anymore, the workers will be jobless. General Motors company had a great influence on the culture of the country. Almost everybody works there, and after work they go home and tell their families about their working day. The next day all the neighbors talk about what has happened. All they discuss is the plant mainly because there is nothing more to discuss.
On the other hand, the situation for General Motors in the United States is not so promising. The financial status of the company is weak and it is not holding up in the automobile industry. Still, General Motors remains one of the most influential companies in the country. The bankruptcy of the company would increase the dependency of the nation on foreign automobiles. Some experts say that one may regard American economy as the financial state of General Motors. The financial state of the company influences its social status, which means that a lot of workers would lose their jobs. The middle class can even disappear.
There is no winner and no loser in this situation. General Motors has a conservative way of development; the company does not try to find new ways of enticing the new consumers. On the world market, it cannot compete with another big companies such as Toyota and Volkswagen. Instead of creating the new policy, the company has to solve the current problems. Though, the company continues to build new plants in the poor countries. It means that the citizens of the United States will lose their job in General Motors; the middle class may disappear; the citizens of the United States will have to drive foreign cars. Though, people from the Third World countries increase the level of income, the men and women get jobs, and they depend on the plants.
Christopher Rude, the economist in the York University in Toronto once said: “The U.S. population is being sacrificed on the altar of global capitalism, and yet that global capitalism needs the demand that the U.S. population generates” (Kleinberg, 2007).
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