Elon Musk spoke at the Wall Street Journal‘s CEO Council Summit in London on Tuesday and opened up about his mass firings and layoffs since he took over as Twitter’s owner last October.
“There were a lot of people that didn’t seem to have a lot of value,” Musk said bluntly. “I think there is the possibility for significant cuts at other companies without affecting their productivity, in fact increasing their productivity.”
Musk’s cuts at Twitter were vast and contentious, first ousting top executives such as then-CEO Parag Agrawal before issuing rounds of mass layoffs, bringing Twitter’s total estimated active workforce to around 1,000 employees as early May — nearly 90% less than it was when Musk took over.
Last November, Musk sent an ultimatum to employees saying their work ethic had to be “extremely hardcore” and that they could expect to be “working long hours at high intensity.” Employees were asked to sign a document stating that they were all in by 5 p.m. the next day or face termination with three months of severance.
Musk went on to talk about his own sense of work ethic at Tuesday’s summit by explaining that it’s often difficult for him to juggle his day considering he is a triple-leader between running Twitter and being CEO at Tesla and SpaceX.
“My days are very long and complicated as you might imagine,” he explained. “And there’s a great deal of context switching … the time management is extremely difficult.”
Musk recently appointed former NBCUniversal executive Linda Yaccarino as CEO of Twitter, maintaining that he will shift his focus at the social media company to the tech and product design side.
Musk’s net worth as of Wednesday afternoon was an estimated $186.2 billion.
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