The conditions at Tesla’s production facility leading up to meeting its Model 3 production goal have been reported as nothing short of hellish as Elon Musk "barked" at employees working 12 hour shifts, bottlenecking other parts of the company's production and reportedly causing concern by employees that the long hours and strenuous environment would cause even more workplace injuries and accidents.
Some Tesla analysts and bulls seemed surprised that the company's stock fell on Monday, even after the company was able to report at the end of the weekend that it had not only reached its 5,000 Model 3 per week goal, but also that it had produced 7,000 vehicles overall. “I think we just became a real car company,” Musk wrote in an e-mail to his employees after meeting the goal for one week.
This led to a nearly 30 point swing in the price of Tesla stock during trading on Monday and further declines today. The stock opened and was quickly over $360 per share before it ultimately faded, gave up all of its gains and went on to finish the day red by several percent. Perhaps this quick loss of confidence was a result of investors finally reading behind the surface level headlines.
Sure, Tesla was able to produce 5,000 Model 3's in a week, but at what cost? Skeptics and bears had asked what the point of meeting the 5,000 per work goal was if it must be done in an “all hands on deck“ fashion that is going to burn out employees and bottleneck other parts of the production line. For instance, it's now being reported that the company's Model S line is 800 cars behind schedule.
On Tuesday, Reuters reported that this is basically exactly what happened. In addition, they reported that a “short tempered“ Elon Musk personally oversaw production and “snapped“ at employees who were told that that weekend work days were mandatory and that 12 hour shifts should be expected.
The article stated:
A tense and short-tempered Chief Executive Elon Musk barked at engineers on the Fremont, California assembly line. Tesla Inc pulled workers from other departments to keep pumping out the Model 3 electric sedans, disrupting production of the Model S and X lines. And weekend shifts were mandatory.
Leading up to Sunday morning’s production milestone, Musk paced the Model 3 line, snapping at his engineers when the around-the-clock production slowed or stopped due to problems with robots, one worker said. Tesla built a new line in just two weeks in a huge tent outside the main factory, an unprecedented move in an industry that takes years to plan out its assembly lines, and said the tented production area accounted for 20 percent of the Model 3s produced last week.
“They were borrowing people from...