Elon Musk says Twitter is more productive after job cuts, suggests tech companies should do the same
After his takeover last year in October, Elon Twitter’s workforce has been cut down from 7500 to roughly 3500
Twitter and Tesla owner Elon Musk, during an interview with the Wall Street Journal, recently suggested that big tech companies should cut jobs to increase work value and
productivity. Referring to the situation at Twitter before his takeover, Musk mentioned that in most companies, there are workers who “help move things forward” and others “who try to slam the brakes on (productivity)”. He also mentioned that nine out of ten people at Twitter were of the second category and dropped productivity.
After his takeover last year in October, Musk reduced the Twitter workforce to half, from 7500 to roughly 3500. More workers got laid off in the months that followed, while some even left due to Musk’s “hardcore” work culture. Twitter currently only has 1,500 workers globally.
Musk’s statement during the interview
During the interview, Musk talked about tech companies in Silicon Valley and pointed them out for not adding value to their work. He said, “A lot of people are doing things that do not have a lot of value, and that’s probably true for most Silicon Valley companies. Maybe not to the degree to which it was at Twitter, but it’s still. There’s significant potential for cuts without affecting their productivity. In fact, increasing their productivity.”
When asked if job cuts also led to Twitter outages, Musk quipped, “Outages are not unusual, Instagram recently had an outage, for example.” Musk also joked that users took to Twitter to report about the Instagram outage.
Nonetheless, Musk has time and again talked about the situation at Twitter in terms of productivity, and even accused the previous management of running Twitter like a non-profit organisation. During the mass layoff, he not only fired the top management, including then-CEO Parag Agrawal, he maintained his stance that work-from-home is morally incorrect.
Back in November 2022, when Twitter witnessed mass layoffs and resignations, Musk sent a memo to its employees, which said, “We will need to be extremely hardcore. This will mean working long hours at high intensity. Only exceptional performance will constitute a passing grade.”