Technology

Elon Musk tells staff he’s now hiring and talks about a Twitter HQ in Texas


Twitter Inc.’s harried chief executive Elon Musk just held a meeting with what’s left of his staff, telling them he is on the lookout for new employees.

The all-hands meeting happened on Monday at Twitter’s San Francisco headquarters. It’s not the first time Musk (pictured) has held such a company-wide get-together during his chaotic time as the Twitter boss. Earlier in the month, staff heard about his vision for the future and were assured in terms of free speech and misinformation, Twitter’s policy hadn’t changed much.

That was after he’d already laid off a good chunk of Twitter’s 7,500 staff, and more left after what can only be called a mutiny. Later, in an email, he told staff that if they wanted to work for his Twitter 2.0, they better accept they have to work hard and that Twitter was, first and foremost, an engineering company. This seemed to backfire, with hundreds of people jumping ship.

Not surprisingly, Musk told staff today that Twitter was done laying people off and was now looking for new employees. He told the people in attendance that Twitter will be all ears if they have friends or acquaintances who might fit the bill, especially if they work in engineering and sales. Reports state that Twitter’s sales department has been decimated, but Musk told staff that the “highest priority” was anyone who can write code.

According to people who were at the meeting, who later talked to The Verge, Musk spent about 30 minutes taking questions from his employees, and one thing that was brought up was the possibility of moving Twitter to Texas, something Musk did with Tesla Inc. His response was perhaps not what people expected.

“If we want to move the headquarters to Texas, I think it would play into the idea that Twitter has gone from being left-wing to right-wing, which is not the case,” he said. “This is not a right-wing takeover of Twitter. It is a moderate-wing takeover of Twitter.” He added that if Twitter is to become the “digital town square,” it should not be a company that looks partisan to any branch of politics. He also said that while he wasn’t intending to move the company, having an HQ in California and one in Texas might not be a bad idea for the future.

He admitted that things had obviously become a tad unstable at Twitter but assured staff that, in time, there will be order. He said a lot of things need to be done, which is why he may decide to set up engineering teams in Brazil, India, Indonesia, and Japan. As for the latter, Musk said it is a country where Twitter seems to be working very well.

“It may seem as though Twitter is US-centric, but if anything, it’s Japan-centric,” he said. “There are roughly the same number of daily active users in Japan as there are in the US, despite the fact that Japan has one-third of the population of the US.”

He finished by telling staff that their compensation in the future will include them being given stock grants they’ll be able to cash out at regular intervals, as happens at SpaceX. According to other people at the meeting, this was one of the reasons the staff that had remained were at last able to feel some relief.

Still, no doubt the near future will be quite the rocky road for the new Musk-eteers, some of whom have reportedly been working the kind of hours Musk works.

Photo: Mohammed Abdelzak/Flickr

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