Lutz doesn't take long to call out as fallacy the notion that Whitacre had a lot to do with the turnaround. From the title of his editorial (How Ed Whitacre Saved GM In Just 10 Months, And Other Fables) onward, Lutz jabs at the notion of Whitacre' effectiveness. In one passage he characterizes the CEO's tenure as being filled with, "... wandering around uncovering employees who were insufficiently entrepreneurial, cautious or didn't have enough 'can-do' spirit."
But, if there's a paragraph that succinctly summarizes Lutz's 'respect' for Whitacre and his time as CEO, it's got to be this gem:
Ed's most notable contribution to design was a comment I recall at a Cadillac styling session. Professing to know nothing about cars (true), he nevertheless opined that Cadillacs had the look of "old-fashioned Choo-choo trains".
We digested that opaque bit of input and elected to stay with what we had.
Good stuff, Bob, we miss you man. Click through here to read the rest of Lutz's short, funny summary.