General Motors CEO Discusses Collaboration and Culture

December 19, 2018

Mary Barra on the need for a positive mindset

Ask Mary Barra if the glass is half full or half empty, and you'll always get the same answer.

"For me, the glass is three-quarters full," she said. "That's just the way I approach it."

The General Motors CEO told students during a conversation with Bill Boulding, dean of Duke's Fuqua School of Business, that a positive mindset and a collaborative culture are essential to success.

"You've got to create the climate where people feel that they can speak up, that there's not fear in the organization," Barra said. "So we work really hard to not be hierarchical; good ideas can come from anywhere."

In these short videos, Barra discusses leadership as part of Fuqua's Distinguished Speaker Series. The full video of Barra's talk is above.

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