VW boss Herbert Diess has now spoken in the power struggle in Wolfsburg. In a video on LinkedIn, he promises more dialogue with the workforce.
VW CEO Herbert Diess now wants to shake hands with disgruntled workers after disagreements at the top of the group. “We plan to coordinate more closely with the works council in particular,” said Diess in a video interview published on the LinkedIn career platform on Wednesday.
Volkswagen has achieved a lot for the workers in the upheaval in the industry, all locations have sustainable products. “But of course there is also a certain fear, including uncertainty among many of the workforce,” said Diess. “Well, I understand that we have a lot of unrest and of course questions and some fears in the system. We have to go into dialogue more.”
The employee side had blamed Diess for problems with the new Golf 8 in the past months. The shop stewards of the IG Metall union were angry because of a racist advertising clip of the company and the associated public image.
“We will meet with the shop stewards, Bernd Osterloh and I, and cultivate this dialogue more, communicate more,” said Diess. Osterloh is the group’s powerful works council chairman, who also sits on the executive board of the supervisory board. “We have a program in place and I hope it will work soon,” said Diess.
In the past few days, an internal dispute in Wolfsburg had resulted in Diess even having to apologize to the supervisory board for statements at a management conference. An uproar occurred because Diess had assumed criminal offenses in connection with press reports on sensitive internal issues for members of the Supervisory Board Presidium.
A corporate spokesman appeased that this did not want to express that members of the supervisory board had made themselves punishable – but an apology to the inner circle of power was still due.
Handing over the complete management responsibility of the core VW car brand to the previous co-managing director, Ralf Brandstätter, represented Diess as an evolutionary step. Brandstätter could relieve him even more clearly in the new role. Brandstätter also participated in the video conversation and said the company wanted to use the step to set up the VW passenger car brand more independently in the future.