Telecommuting/ WFH and Remote Work

Elon is smart visionary but a lousy manager. Engineers are not motivated by threats and bullying. Doesn’t work. They need challenges and prospects… Carrots not sticks.

Nike recruited me and offered me a remote data scientist job. “Remote” actually meant flying to Portland once a month…


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During the pandemic, many people realize life is more valuable than money and they enjoy the company of their loved ones. Many older folks over 60s quit the workforce, parents opts to stay home as much as possible, and DINKs wants more time with their significant half. Only unattached TikTokers want to be in office to socialize.

Hybrid :+1:

Labor shortage :slightly_frowning_face: A significant drop in labor available especially for those need to be physically in the workplace.

This is a structural change. Society and economy need time to adjust.


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Musk has a high bar for worker productivity. IMO less than 5% of employees can be trusted to be maximally productive while working from home. People who argue that they are ‘just as productive’ working from home are generally mediocre clock punchers and not in that top 5%. Hard chargers like Musk and Jobs have/had an even higher bar for employee productivity so I’m not surprised that Musk is pissed about WFH.

The other factor is that his businesses involve real physical products with major engineering challenges and the potential for catastrophic failure. You can’t build starship rockets from your beach house in Cabo. This is not some lame viral internet scam like Yelp where business pay for ‘protection’ against negative online reviews.


I think you have misunderstood the stance of many people here. WFH works only for work which can be done from home. I don’t think nobody here supports everyone to work remote. Some of the jobs can only be done from office. I’ve a quality control engineer friend from Apple who has to go to office and that’s valid. How did you arrive at 5%? Any study to backup?

IMO = “in my opinion”. Everyone has a different bar for what is satisfactory productivity. In a truly innovative business it is not something that can easily be quantified.

If everyone in a company can work from home (software, law), fine, there is a case for it. In businesses that actually make physical products you run into issues when ‘management’ decides they don’t need to come in any more but the rank and file still need to show up and build the product. When model 3 was ramping up Musk was sleeping on the factory floor, not phoning it in from the beach. Tesla probably wouldn’t exist right now if had taken the present attitude toward WFH.

Yes you are right. I am not arguing against that. That’s why said not everyone/ certain situations (like initial Tesla period) can be remote. 2020/ 2021 was almost full remote. Tesla was hugely growing without any substantial loss right? Why should a software engg. go back to office now? By your logic for 2 yrs 95% of employees in your company were unproductive and if it’s true your company should have filed bankruptcy now.


We were only fully remote for 3–4 weeks at the start of the pandemic, but then there was shift work, issues with childcare/school shutdowns, covid cases in the office, people with at-risk family members who resisted coming in even though their job required it (this is hard situation!) etc etc so it has been hard to get back to full productivity.

How long was Tesla fully remote? Barely at all! Certainly not most of 2020/2021. I recall they violated the county lockdown orders to keep the factory open…and in Shanghai they had workers sleeping in the factory to keep things running during the recent lockdown. That ‘get it done no matter what’ attitude has been a major contributor to their recent growth. It is not a good look for management to be phoning it in while asking their employees to camp at the factory for a month and be separated from their families to hit the quarterly production target. I don’t “need” to be in the office for my work but show up every day to lead by example, build culture and bond with the team.

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@DH0 if I were in a job the required me to come to the office/factory, I’d still want others who can WFH to WFH. Main reason being, I don’t like sitting in traffic with any more folks than already.

Based on the last 2.5 years it seems WFH exceeded expectations. We’ll all know in a decade how this remote work fares. @the trust part, I don’t think people who sit and work in front of computer terminals can be monitored for their efficiency just by being in Office.

Of course, certain jobs can’t be done remotely. I have said it myself on this thread. I have quoted that post below.

4,000 weeks. And, you can’t save it.


For a person who don’t like to read books, luckily got web search and nice people who wrote TL;DR version.

A perfectly happy retiree who is building birdhouses for the sheer joy of watching the wrens will probably not find anything in the book they didn’t already intuitively understand.

This book is not for me :slight_smile:

I didn’t mean read the book necessarily. I meant the title alone supports your observation. Those two words say it all; the average amount of time we have. And, I added that time cannot be saved.

It just puts it in perspective. Maybe more so for me now that I’m so much closer to my mortal end than I’ve ever been. :wink: One of the biggest differences in my life past age 65 and my life at say, age 40 is, I used to think about what I wanted to do in the future and look for a way to get there. Well now, I think about the future and realize that, I may not be around or physically able to do what I’m planning. It’s kind of shocking and makes one focus more on the here and now.

For instance, I rebuilt a rotted deck last year. I started like always by saying I wanted to make it last for at least 40 years and I didn’t want to be redoing in in five or ten years. Then I realized, it’s not likely I’ll be here in 40 years. So, I rebuilt the deck but, took a few shortcuts that didn’t insure longevity. It won’t be my problem next time. I made me wonder how many house flippers, contractors, etc. have this same attitude…It won’t be my problem.