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Elon Musk’s Ultimatum for Tesla Management: Return to Office or Exit


This is not the first time that Elon Musk’s hard-love treatment of employees has come up.

Looks like the world’s richest man has had it with this whole work-from-home business.

Tesla Inc. CEO Elon Musk has fueled the return to office debate on Twitter by extending an email he allegedly sent to the electric carmaker’s executive staff on Tuesday.

Under the subject line “Remote work is no longer acceptable” [sic]Musk wrote that “anyone who wants to do teleworking should be in the office for a minimum (and I mean * minimum *) of 40 hours a week or leave Tesla. That’s less than we’re asking for factory workers.”

The CEO further specified that the office “should be a main Tesla office, not a remote branch office that is not related to the job duties, for example to be responsible for Fremont factory human relations, but that your office in” must be another state. “

Although Musk did not directly address whether the email was authentic, he strongly suggested it was by responding to a follower asking him to address people who think going to work is an outdated concept. “They have to pretend to work somewhere else,” he replied.

This is not the first time Musk’s hard-hearted treatment of employees has come up.

About two weeks before Musk reached an agreement with Twitter Inc. to acquire, Keith Rabois, a Silicon Valley venture capitalist and entrepreneur, tweeted an anecdote that speaks to his friend’s management style. By Space Exploration Technologies Corp. Musk once noticed a group of interns grinding around while waiting in line for coffee.

Musk saw this as an insult to productivity. According to Rabois, who knows Musk from his days at PayPal Holdings Inc., Musk threatened to fire all interns if it happened again, and had security cameras installed to monitor compliance.

Rabois wrote in April that employees at Twitter – one of the most prominent companies allowing permanent remote work – are “in for a rude awakening”. Musk’s apparent email to Tesla’s executives suggests that Twitter’s policy will change as soon as it takes over.

The reference to Tesla factory workers is also interesting in light of the situation at the carmaker’s plant in Shanghai.

Thousands of staff there have been effectively locked up for months and work 12-hour shifts, six days a week. Until recently, many slept on the factory floor as part of a closed loop system meant to keep Covid out and cars rolling off the production line.

Workers brought in to get the factory back on track are transported between the facility and their sleeping quarters – whether unused factories or an old military camp – with day and night shift workers sharing beds in temporary residence.

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