Elon Musk’s take on remote working: come back or quit

In emails sent to Tesla teams, Elon Musk asks his employees to come to the office “at least” 40 hours a week, under penalty of having to leave the company. His tone is quite amazing.

The labor code is definitely not the same in France as in the United States. We reassure you all the same, the message sent by Elon Musk to Tesla employees is far from unanimous, including across the Atlantic. On Reddit and on social networks, many denounce the firmness of Elon Musk with respect to telework. for the billionaire “Anyone who wants to work remotely must be in the office for a minimum (and I do mean a ‘minimum’) of 40 hours per week or leave Tesla. This is less than what we ask of factory workers. ». This is the introduction of an email whose subject is “teleworking is no longer acceptable”.

Elon Musk highlights equality between employees

On paper, the argument put forward by Elon Musk is entirely admissible. The workers themselves are obliged to come on site. In the name of equal working time, he believes that no one should be allowed to telecommute. Only people who have spent at least 40 hours on site can continue to work from home, supposedly so as not to create a gap with the workers. An absolutist vision, in line with his other opinions (on freedom of expression for example).

Of course, it is difficult not to see a certain hypocrisy in this. In all companies, all trades are not subject to the same time and geographic constraints. This anti-teleworking vision is not really in line with the modernity of Tesla, but is consistent with those of other large groups (Apple, for example, which would like its employees to return). Elon Musk, although known for his hard work, is someone who travels a lot and manages several businesses. He too cannot be at the office every day.

In another email (with subject “to be very clear”just to add a layer), Elon Musk qualifies telework as “pseudo office” and says that the companies that practice it haven’t released good products for a long time. “That’s why I lived so long in the factory — so that those working on the line could see me working alongside them. If I hadn’t done this, Tesla would have gone bankrupt a long time ago,” adds the billionaire.

What shocks Tesla employees and the outside world is the tone used by Elon Musk in his two emails. Enticing his employees to come back is one thing, threatening to fire everyone while denigrating telecommuting and other companies is another. The potential future boss of Twitter shows an astonishing severity which, even in a country like the United States, is cause for concern.

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