After renault took a controlling stake in nissan in 1999, the French carmaker sent in Carlos Ghosn, a Brazilian-born, 47-year-old turnaround expert, to lead the overhaul. TIME's Tokyo bureau chief Tim Larimer recently spoke with Ghosn about the most dramatic makeover to date of a Japanese company.
TIME: What has been the hardest thing to change?
Ghosn: Establishing or restoring a sense of emergency, and the necessity of speed in action and in getting results.
TIME: In the 1980s, everybody wanted to copy the Japanese way of doing business....