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PACIFIC WATCH

Japan

March 21, 1994|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Honda Gets Tough With Managers: The auto maker said it would start a tough new personnel policy threatening unproductive managers with demotion and pay cuts, a move analysts said is part of a broader trend whittling away at Japan's once-vaunted lifetime employment system. Under Honda Motor Co.'s new program, managers who fail to win promotion within eight to 12 years will be demoted and their salaries cut 10% to 30%, a Honda spokesman said. Honda's move echoes changes at other car companies which, faced with weak demand and overcapacity, are struggling to cut costs, improve management flexibility and link pay packets more closely to performance rather than seniority alone.

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