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Chrysler's Nardelli Says He'll Listen to Detractors

Bob Nardelli, president and CEO of Home Depot speaks at the National Retail Federation Convention, Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2006, in New York. Nardelli and John Chambers, president and CEO of Cisco Systems discussed the role that new technology is playing to enhance the customers experience and the profitability of retailers. ( AP Photo/ Louis Lanzano)
Louis Lanzano
Bob Nardelli, president and CEO of Home Depot speaks at the National Retail Federation Convention, Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2006, in New York. Nardelli and John Chambers, president and CEO of Cisco Systems discussed the role that new technology is playing to enhance the customers experience and the profitability of retailers. ( AP Photo/ Louis Lanzano)

Chrysler Chief Executive Bob Nardelli said Monday he has a three-pronged strategy to return the company to profitability, and it starts with listening to the company's critics.

Nardelli took over at Chrysler shortly after Daimler sold an 80.1 percent stake in the company to Cerberus Capital Management in May. In the 100 or so days since then, he has been working to turn around the bottom line of a company often maligned for its poor vehicle designs and spiraling labor costs.

Speaking to CNBC's Dennis Kneale at the American Magazine Conference, Nardelli said Chrysler will listen to criticism and respond.

"I'm not a designer but I'm a consumer," Nardelli said. "Rather than deny some of the reports that are out there in J.D. Power and some of the others, you kind of embrace them and say, 'What do we want to do to take our vehicle from where it is to where consumers want it to be?'"

The company's three-point strategy, as outlined by Nardelli, is to become partners rather than adversaries with dealerships; keep the organization "laser-focused on priorities" with attention to customer service, quality and eco-friendliness; and to execute "with a bias toward speed."

Nardelli called the recently completed labor agreement with the United Auto Workers "a major step forward" for both parties and said it would help the company's bottom line.

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