(Bloomberg) -- No one could blame General Motors Co. ChiefExecutive Officer Mary Barra if she wanted a do-over in the newyear after spending much of 2014 dealing with the automaker’signition-switch recall.

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Like many of her predecessors, her first 12 months were consumedby a crisis. Similarly, Jack Smith took over in 1992 after theboard ousted top management amid GM’s first brush with bankruptcy.Fritz Henderson got the job in 2009 as GM was preparing to file forbankruptcy and former AT&T Chairman Ed Whitacre came on boardlater that year as GM emerged from Chapter 11 protection.

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GM’s first female CEO is looking to start the year dealing withmore conventional GM problems, such as reviving Cadillac, dealingwith trouble in Europe and improving vehicle quality, she toldreporters today in Detroit. To fix the company, she said she willhold her deputies accountable for making progress.

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As for her first year, Barra, 53, was matter-of-fact about thefatal defects in older small cars.

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“If I could roll back the clock and not have it happen, Iwould,” she said. “Good things are going to happen, bad things aregoing to happen. Deal with it.”

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In February of last year, just weeks after Barra took over, GMrecalled almost 800,000 cars because the ignition switch could slipout of the “run” position, shutting off the engine and safetyfeatures like air bags while the car is driving. The recalleventually expanded to 2.59 million vehicles and has been linked to42 deaths.

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Less Patience

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As a result of the recall, Barra said she is much more impatientthan she might have been. She wants GM to become a zero-defectcompany and said she will not accept excuses for failing to deliverresults on quality or other issue she wants to fix.

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“Last year was a defining moment for the company,” she said.“I’ve become more impatient and more determined. Maybe I would haveaccepted longer timelines to get things done. Well, no more.”

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There are plenty of problems still to fix. Cadillac sales in theU.S. fell 6.5% last year. GM has trouble in Europe, where weakeconomies are stalling progress turning around its German Opelunit. And the company continues to recall cars for reasons notrelated to the flawed ignition switch -- a record of almost 27million in the U.S. alone last year. Barra will also need to get anew four-year labor pact with the United Auto Workers union, whichwants a pay raise after several years of fat profits.

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‘Not Really Fixed’

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“You can go back to 1992 and most of the new CEOs stepped into acrisis,” said Maryann Keller, an independent automotive consultantin Stamford, Connecticut. “Mary inherited a company that wasphysically changed in bankruptcy but not really fixed.”

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GM is still losing market share in the U.S. as it has donealmost every year since the early 1960s. Last year it slipped to17.8% from 17.9%. Light-vehicle sales may rise to as much as 17million this year or remain at last year’s 16.5 million, shesaid.

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Barra said she wants to start growing again. However, she saidGM will not chase market share gains at the expense ofprofitability.

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If not for Cadillac, GM would have gained share.

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“Cadillac at one point in time did stand for luxury of theworld,” she said. “Something doesn’t diminish overnight. It willtake time to rebuild it.”

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Barra in July hired former Audi of America chief Johan deNysschen to lead Cadillac’s turnaround. She said GM needs to workon adding more product and promoting the brand better.

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European Focus

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GM lost $844 million in Europe in 2013 and $976 million throughthe first three quarters of last year. It was the automaker’sweakest global region.

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Europe will be a point of focus this year, said Barra, who hasvisited the headquarters in Germany twice since taking over asCEO.

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UAW leaders say that one of their top priorities is gaining wageincreases for workers. Barra wouldn’t comment on whether she wouldagree to a raise for factory employees.

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“The main thing is we need to make sure we’re competitive fromindustry perspective and that’s what my focus will be,” shesaid.

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To promote accountability, Barra said she has changedperformance reviews. They don’t just talk about what happened, shesaid: It’s a blunt review.

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“We have very honest conversations with individuals,” she said.“Did you do what you said you’re going to do or not?”

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