Elon Musk is being compared to another ruthless U.S. businessman—Jack Welch.
- Elon Musk is known for his impulsiveness and his need for micromanaging, leading to a comparison of another big businessman—Jack Welch.
- Welch is an infamous micromanager who tended to make big financial decisions on a whim much like Musk.
- Both men are also considered brilliant visionaries, navigating ideas into billion-dollar businesses.
Why it’s news
Elon Musk tends to keep people on their toes as many people never know his next move. He has opted to make huge financial decisions quickly as well as not listen to advice from others and do things completely on his own.
Another thing Musk liked to do—micromanage. It is no secret that the Tesla CEO likes to insert his opinion quite often which has led people to compare him to Jack Welch.
Welch was chairman and CEO of General Electric between 1981 and 2001 and grew a large cult following and a vast wealth, much like Musk. He became famous for massive company firing sprees as well as micromanaging.
Both Welch and Musk have a tendency to take in more than they can handle and spread themselves very thin ultimately leading to a downfall.
Many people fear that Musk could potentially fall from his pedestal just as Welch did years ago after taking on too much and hurting companies in the process.
“They’re both pretty ruthless in the sense that they’re not too worried about the effects on the broader community or on the employees,” said director of the Center for Human Resources at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, Peter Cappelli. “They’re thinking first that their job is to look after their money.”
Musk and Welch also both have a love for micromanaging and inserting their opinion anywhere.
Welch penned a 2016 LinkedIn post entitled “Why I Love Micromanaging and You Should Too,” according to Bloomberg writers Matthew Boyle and Jo Constantz. Musk has also expressed his fondness of micromanaging, referring to himself as a “nano-manager.”
Welch’s actions have been chronicled in many a business book, most recently in William Cohan’s Power Failure, which details the failings of his hand-picked GE successor Jeff Immelt.
The leaders do have some differences of course, but overall their business tactics will surely be discussed for years to come.