I’ve always had a different view of Elon than most people. You either love him or hate him. I’m sort of in the middle. My take has generally been: Elon’s a bullshitter who delivers.
Given everything that is going on in the Elonverse, I thought it might be an interesting time to zero in a little further. Plus I just listened to his autobiography which paints a picture of the insane ride that is Elon.
Elon the Confuser
Elon delivers yet has so many haters. To me, it’s by three key things:
- Unrealistic timelines (hence Elon the bullshitter)
- He’s a maniac
The first two lead to Elon the bullshitter… the second two lead to Elon delivering. The overlap is where things get the most interesting.
An Awkward Talent Stack
I love the idea of talent stacks as a way to A. differentiate yourself, B. explain others success. Elon doesn’t need to be differentiated, but people do struggle to understand him. Most are either fan bois or just accuse him of being a fraud. Both make sense… he’s a bullshitter and that gets mistaken as fraud, while he delivers ridiculous results leading to fan bois.
Elon the Maniac
Everyone knows it, but Elon is also a maniac. Some of it is part of a larger plan to get things done (make unrealistic deadlines, remove necessary tasks, etc…), but some of it is just him being straight up nuts. His relationships are chaos. He literally believes his son will live on Mars. He makes rash actions. He becomes a sperm donor to one of his employees and doesn’t tell his girlfriend/baby mama. He supports the dumbest conspiracy theories without any research… then quickly retraces when he does any level of research. Elon is a maniac, but he somehow makes it work.
Yet, for all of this bad, it has a lot of good. He’s got a maniacal focus that he leverages. He makes decisions quickly that allow him to iterate. Every coin has two sides and you can’t just look at one to make a decision. Elon’s incredibly complex. Yet sort of stupid simple when you think about it.
Wrap it Up
I’m not sure this is the optimal way to run a business in the long term, but you can’t argue with success. You are going to churn through people left and right.
A few other interesting tidbits:
- Idiot index – a high ratio of finished goods to raw materials. The process of turning those raw materials into
- Elon’s health isn’t great
- I doubt anyone will be able to fill the void, if/when he ever steps down
- It’s highly likely he will willingly step down