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Matthew A. Winkler

In Defense of Elon Musk's Managerial Excellence

The Tesla CEO’s track record proves he’s a pre-eminent builder of businesses and maximizer of shareholder value.  

This is the world’s best corporate manager.

This is the world’s best corporate manager.

Photographer: Suzanne Cordiero/AFP via Getty Images


For all the histrionics, from the 2018 tweet “considering taking Tesla private” for which he incurred a $20 million fine from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to smoking weed during a podcast and his latest foray offering to buy Twitter Inc. for about $43 billion, Elon Musk is a pretty good business manager. In fact, the chief executive officer of the world's most valuable automaker has no equal.

Among the 10 largest publicly-traded companies, Musk’s Tesla Inc. is No. 1 in growth the past decade with revenue increasing more than 260-fold to $53.8 billion; No. 1 the past 12 months with sales surging 71%; No. 1 in share performance over five and 10 years with its stock appreciating 15- and 146-fold, respectively, to a recent $1,000; and No. 1 in employment by more than quintupling its workforce since 2016, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.