Tesla employees involved in the recent layoffs were likely unaware of the situation until waking into work the day of a last-minute four-hour meeting.
Not long after Tesla CEO Elon Musk emailed employees to increase productivity, explaining that they should limit meetings and calls and focus on the task at hand, an email was sent in the wee hours of the night asking employees to set aside four hours for a video conference meeting. Musk previously told workers:
Walk out of a meeting or drop off a call as soon as it is obvious you aren't adding value. It is not rude to leave, it is rude to make someone stay and waste their time.
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Well, about 250 employees would be walking out of this meeting, but not until the four-hour presentation was over. Once they walked out, some would be finding the door and not returning.
According to several sources, including laid-off employees, and a person from Tesla Motors Club forum with inside information, the email came at 1 AM just hours before Tesla would announce plans to lay off 9 percent of its workers in order to work toward profitability.
Chances are, many of these workers were fast asleep and didn't even receive the email until they woke, or even worse, until they arrived ready to work, only to find out that they had a four-hour meeting, which would end with them packing their bags.
One of the biggest complaints from many Tesla-skeptics is that the company has yet to make a profit. However, there are arguments on both sides. In terms of automakers, Tesla is considerably new and still funneling an exorbitant amount of capital back into building out for the future. But, at some point - and now we know that Tesla CEO Elon Musk agrees - the automaker has to find a way to show a profit. Musk said in another email:
As part of this effort, and the need to reduce costs and become profitable, we have made the difficult decision to let go of approximately 9 percent of our colleagues across the company.
These cuts were almost entirely made from our salaried population and no production associates were included, so this will not affect our ability to reach Model 3 production targets in the coming months.
The good news is that the company's stock has been rising once again, and even more quickly than it has in the past. We've seen share growth as high as seven percent recently and the stock currently sits just shy of $360 per share.
We can only wait and see if this move, along with the Model 3 production ramp, will lead Tesla to a true position of profitability in the near future.