Elon Musk’s Top 5 Productivity Tips & Advice

In a bid to crack down on waste within his beleaguered organisation, Tesla, billionaire (and possible evil genius) Elon Musk has sent a memo around to all staff worldwide, telling them to be more careful not just with company expenditure, but with personal time management also.

While the memo is filled with the expected sage advice concerning supply chain, dealing with contractors and the like, the real gem of wisdom within the notice is one regarding the use of one’s time in meetings.

We’ve all had a meeting that’s seemingly dragged on forever, but the numbers actually support Musk’s claim that they’re a massive drain–not just on the collective employee’s brains, but also on the company’s dollar. A 2014 study indicated that senior executives in US firms spent two work days a week in meetings. Experts also claim that US companies combined waste US$25 million a day on lost productivity due to meetings. That’s US$37 billion a year.

And that’s a lot of Teslas, which is currently the enigmatic Elon’s biggest problem.

To reach incredibly high production targets, his Fremont car building facility must start chalking up some serious numbers, not just to deliver pre-orders of the US$35,000 dollar electric vehicle on time, but to stay afloat financially. He knows this, it’s very public information, and some shareholders are getting very itchy feet indeed.

The CEO sees time as money, an adage as old as time (or at least money) itself, and is fed up with it being wasted. The full list of recommendations regarding time management is listed below.

In the meantime, good luck walking out of your next mind-numbing meeting.

  • Cancel large meetings or if you have to have them keep them “very short”
  • Walk out of a meeting or end a phone call if it is failing to serve a useful purpose.
  • Avoid acronyms or nonsense words. “We don’t want people to have to memorise a glossary just to function at Tesla”
  • Sidestep the “chain of command” to get the job done. Managers insisting on hierarchies will “soon find themselves working elsewhere”
  • Ignore the rules if following them is obviously ridiculous.