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San Jose Mercury News Columnist's Opinion on Elon Musk

Discussion in 'Tesla Motors' started by Owner, Nov 27, 2013.

  1. Owner

    Owner Active Member

    Dec 20, 2012
    San Francisco Bay Area
    A columnist (not a reporter) wrote the following opinion piece about Musk.

    Quinn: Tesla's Elon Musk needs to delegate crisis management - San Jose Mercury News

    My take: an old fashioned view on how to run a business.
  2. Krugerrand

    Krugerrand Active Member

    Jul 13, 2012
    And my take: Michelle Quinn, who cares? :tongue:
  3. artsci

    artsci Sponsor

    May 10, 2012
    Timonium, Maryland
    Who the hell is Michelle Quinn?
  4. lolachampcar

    lolachampcar Active Member

    Nov 26, 2012
    WPB Florida
    Employee X was taken from temp to perm based on performance and a good attitude. We continued to advance X through more and more rigorous positions (with increased pay) until he reached a point where he got some negative feedback. This is inevitable as we all reach a point where we do not get something right the first time. X did not react well to the negative feedback and began a downward spiral that resulted in his being dismissed for theft of company information in violation of the NDA he signed on the same day the EEOC complaint hit my desk. Apparently X was copying all the manufacturing documentation to prove how good he was. As you might guess, the timing was an employment attorney's dream.

    Later I learned that X had left The Home Depot following a complaint and settlement. I could easily have given X $5K to go away and this surely would have been the most cost effective way to deal with him. Two things stopped me. First, Y who sat next to X, was paying close attention. If there was money to be made with this path, she was all over it. Second, paying X would have simply passed the problem along to the next company.

    It took four years and $35K to finally have a judge tell X to "either sign the papers you said you would sign or go to jail for contempt". The papers were a simple settlement that dropped the theft charges in exchange for a release on the (baseless) EEOC and related charges. This was the very same offer we made on day one of the dispute.

    I bring up the above story in response to the Quinn piece. Letting things pass in an expeditious manner is not always the best path. Musk had a point when he asked why the two MS fires without injury got more coverage than the many ICE fires with injury. Sure, part of the answer was that he is a big target but there is merit to that question and the media needed to post the question. Having what the "target" tweets making the news puts that very retort in the news.

    Musk is simply not accepting the way business is run today and he is speaking out. Can it backfire on short term shareholder value and is it a bit of a gamble? Sure! Can you make money in this world without these types of gambles and taking a longer term stand? Sure. Are we better off doing it the easy way? I think not but then I am in the minority.
  5. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

    Apr 2, 2010
    Ottawa, Canada
    I agree that the negative publicity on the fires is both unwarranted and excessive.

    That said, Tesla doesn't for the most part do paid advertising. Aside from the all-important word-of-mouth Tesla mainly uses the "free" publicity they get via news media, blogs, etc. to promote their product. They have deliberately built a large public profile in the media.

    Unfortunately that high profile position is a double-edged sword. You also put more of a focus on any bad news.

    Also unfortunately people in the media business have the attention span of a gnat, and don't use much in the way of reasoning when deciding what story to cover or what to write. Clearly these fires are somewhat newsworthy, in that they are the first for an OEM EV, but considering the frighteningly dismal record of ICE vehicles the reporting is ludicrously unbalanced.
  6. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

    Mar 8, 2012
    Even so the general public is largely unaware of the fires. I've been to five or six car shows, including today's, since the fires started and have had about three comments. I'd expect that car show attendees would pay more attention to car news than the average person, but the knowledge of the fires (or at least the concern about them) is very small.
  7. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

    Feb 6, 2011
    Columbia River Gorge
    In fairness (?) to the media, the media is just a cross-section of society in general. I'd like to think they operate by a higher standard. Heck, I'd like to think that politicians operate by a higher standard. But just like most people you interact with seem to operate on a 'sound bite mentality', so do most of the media|educators|politicians|financial analysts|whoever we're talking about.

    There are some people in the media business who are fair, bring in-depth thoughtful analysis to the forefront. Unfortunately those folks are rare. But let's remember the media is no worse than any other group.
  8. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

    Nov 10, 2011
    I'd like to think that too. Unfortunately, I don't. Standards for media and politics have lowered faster than grammar and spelling in human communication.

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