Elon Musk has never yet of his own free will relinquished the reins of one of the many large companies he has created or taken over over the past three decades. Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, a Yale University professor and management specialist, compares him to Travis Kalanick (Uber), Adam Neumann (WeWork), even Steve Jobs, “before he got his ass kicked” and was fired from Apple in 1985. Managers, according to him , becoming “withdrawn into themselves”, unable to “listen”, “rejecting what could help them”.
“In Musk’s Shadow”
For Ann Lipton, professor of business law and entrepreneurship at Tulane University, even if Elon Musk appoints a successor, “he has very strong opinions about how to run Twitter,” of which he remains the majority shareholder. “So any new boss might struggle to implement their own vision,” she says. “He will likely work in Musk’s shadow, especially since Musk wants to stay with the company. Thus, the Pretoria native indicated that even once he found the rare gem, he would still take care of “the teams dedicated to software and servers” .
The billionaire is a compulsive user of the platform, Ann Lipton imagines the possibility that he responds to direct requests from users asking him to decide certain issues, thus weakening his successor. As for the profile of the future CEO, “he needs someone who responds more wisely and diplomatically to outside looks,” says Jeffrey Sonnenfeld. But for the academic, the problem is that Elon Musk “is looking for a clone of himself, and that is exactly what must be avoided”.
Several names mentioned
Several American media have mentioned the names of investor Jason Calacanis and former PayPal director David Sacks, close to Elon Musk and also patented twittos. They were part of the tight team that surrounded the billionaire during the takeover of the platform and intervened in important decisions, according to the Los Angeles Times.