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  • By The Financial District

Elon Musk Sparks Talent Exodus

Elon Musk has sparked a huge departure of Tesla employees who are upset by their CEO's crazy pronouncements, which include eliminating positions by 10% and ending work-from-home programs, as well as his Twitter attacks aimed at lowering the company's value

Photo Insert: Tesla founder Elon Musk during a NASA commercial crew demo launch

After Musk announced a return-to-work deadline this week, some of the electric carmaker's almost 100,000 employees may already be weighing their alternatives.

Musk suddenly threatened to dismiss anyone who did not work 40 hours a week in the office, a stark contrast to the flexibility granted by Big Tech businesses competing for the same talent pool, Hyunjoo Jin reported for Reuters.

"Tesla is kick-starting its own local Great Resignation," said Stanford University economics professor Nicholas Bloom, who predicted that 60% of employees would return to the office full time, about 10% would quit, and about 30% would look for another job.

Some tech companies, sensing an opening, were quick to swoop. Scott Farquhar, Australia’s third-richest man and the co-founder of software maker Atlassian, tweeted about plans to expand and offer flexibility. "Any Tesla employees interested?" he added.

All the news: Business man in suit and tie smiling and reading a newspaper near the financial district.

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, more and more tech workers, used to working from home or hybrid policies, are refusing to come back to the office full-time. One former Tesla engineer told Reuters he recently took a job at Alphabet because of the lack of work-life balance, including pressure to come into the office during the pandemic.

At Google, he has to come to the office only three times a week, with some of his team members working remotely, he said. He said his friends working from home "are not less productive, but significantly happier."

Business: Business men in suite and tie in a work meeting in the office located in the financial district.

Another former Tesla engineer said he had been under pressure to work in the office during the pandemic in 2020 and got COVID twice - before moving to Apple. The threat of layoffs and the return-to-office order come as Tesla engineers are watching their stock-based compensation drop.

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