In order to envision lofty goals and transform them into (arguably) attainable processes — like Elon Musk and his quest to colonize Mars — one has to be a little eccentric as a boss. This sometimes translates into not-so-awesome stories like Musk firing his long-time assistant after she asked for a raise. Yet occasionally, a story surfaces that paints Musk (as Cass Anderson described at BroBible) as so “straight-up savage” that one has to admire the guy.
Musk also sounds damn efficient in meetings if this account, as relayed by Business Insider, is absolutely true. Apparently, Musk is not a fan of packed rooms at meetings or pulling engineers away from productive tasks, so he expects all attendees to either participate or not bother attending. This account arrives via a former SpaceX employee who posted on Quora:
Elon to a meeting member: “You haven’t said anything. Why are you in here?”
That may be borderline rude, but it makes sense. Don’t be in a meeting unless there’s a purpose for it; either to make a decision, or get people up to speed. In most cases, an email will suffice.
The staffer in question was part of an analysis group, so one-on-one communication would be favored over giant group meetings, where people tend to tune out and coast while — just maybe — taking an unofficial break in the process. We’ve all likely tried to pull this off at some point, but Elon Musk has no patience for such charades. After all, he’s shooting for the moon.