Tesla's leader warned to “step aside” to avoid “crisis”

Tesla's leader warned to “step aside” to avoid “crisis”

Executive Grapevine
Executive Grapevine | Executive Grapevine International Ltd

The Founder of an Exec Search firm has delivered Tesla’s CEO stern advice, as the electric car-maker rolls out its much-vaunted Model 3 Edition in attempts to make it in the mainstream automobile industry.

Despite the clear success that the largescale rollout of Model 3 represents, some industry experts and media commentators are now calling on Tesla Founder, Elon Musk, to step aside.

As Tesla begins to require efficiency, deadline-meeting, supply-chain management, labour administration and profit margin organisation from its leader, rather than visionary ideals, it is argued that Musk is ill-suited to Tesla’s next phase.

Speaking to Wired, Patricia Lenkov, Founder of Search firm, Agility Executive Search, explained that “the best leaders know when to transition, when to bring in expertise of other kinds. When they don’t you end up in crisis mode”.

However, there’s evidence to suggest that Musk may well move aside: he’s a notorious polymath who’s interested in several projects at once; seems well-suited to working on new ideas; and, perhaps most importantly, in 2013, told investors he’d consider moving aside once Model 3 hit the market.

And, there are models of transitions that have come before: Google co-Founders Larry Page and Schmidt moved “upstairs”, away from the daily noise of running a company; and, Bill Gates stepped down in CEO, with Steve Ballmer replacing him.

Whether Musk is genuinely considering stepping aside, or not, there is no dearth in candidates already being touted, including the ex-CEO of Ford.

Whatever the reality, one thing is clear, the task of replacing Tesla’s singular and esoteric leader will have Search firms lining up to take on the assignment.

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