We recently told you about how Tesla released a software update to include a feature called Dog Mode just months after a tweet asking for feature that keeps the inside of the car at a comfortable temperature for pets and displays a message saying such.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 20, 2018
As if that turn around wasn’t impressive enough, what happened this week is beyond the comprehension of most large companies. Mere seconds after Twitter user Rahul Sood tweeted to Tesla and its CEO Elon Musk about a potential bug causing the feature to not work as expected if your AC was last set to a manual fan speed, Elon responded “Fixing …”
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 31, 2019
But that isn’t all. The fix itself, pushed via software update, came through just two days later. In less than the time it takes to have a typical meeting, Elon saw the tweet, determined it was a good idea, made the decision to act, and presumably assigned a person or team to code the fix. The update then got created, tested, approved and pushed within two days.
Well that was quick! Thanks Elon! pic.twitter.com/D9yN1tgiEQ
— Rahul Sood (@rahulsood) August 2, 2019
At a time when other automakers still appear to be content with the type of business model that has worked for them the last 100 years, Tesla is proving once again that it defies convention. Last year, a leaked e-mail from Elon Musk to all Tesla employees outlined recommendations for productivity that dismissed some of the business practices common in large companies. In part, the email said:
Btw, here are a few productivity recommendations:
– Excessive meetings are the blight of big companies and almost always get worse over time. Please get of all large meetings, unless you’re certain they are providing value to the whole audience, in which case keep them very short.
– Also get rid of frequent meetings, unless you are dealing with an extremely urgent matter. Meeting frequency should drop rapidly once the urgent matter is resolved.
– Walk out of a meeting or drop off a call as soon as it is obvious you aren’t adding value. It is not rude to leave, it is rude to make someone stay and waste their time.
– Don’t use acronyms or nonsense words for objects, software or processes at Tesla. In general, anything that requires an explanation inhibits communication. We don’t want people to have to memorize a glossary just to function at Tesla.
– Communication should travel via the shortest path necessary to get the job done, not through the “chain of command”. Any manager who attempts to enforce chain of command communication will soon find themselves working elsewhere.
If anything can illustrate the agility of Tesla, it’s the events that unfolded related to this Dog Mode fix.