The Six Productivity Hacks Elon Musk Sent To His Staff

I had to laugh when I compared it to what we did in the police

Malky McEwan
The Haven
Published in
9 min readDec 21, 2020


Photo by Shuniya Studios on Unsplash

In a leaked memo, Elon Musk sent every employee in Tesla his six rules for productivity. Unsurprisingly, they are good.

I had to laugh when I compared it to what we did in the police — and I bet they are still doing it.

#1. Leave a meeting if you are not contributing.

Walk out of a meeting or hang up the phone the moment you realise you are not contributing. If you are not adding value — get the hell out of there. It is not rude to leave, it is rude to waste other people’s time.

I once got up to walk out of a meeting — Chief Inspector Chumley wasn’t pleased:

“Wait,” said Chumley, “one more thing. What if we could get the horsey section to attend the town fair too?”

“If you mean the mounted police, that is what they are for,” I replied.

“See if they can supply two horses and riders. That should do it.”

I toddled off. Later, I contacted the mounted section, they couldn’t have been more helpful; they’d supply two horses and two riders, no problem. Town fairs were just the thing they were good at.

The next day I sat in on the hindsight meeting, and at the end, Chief Inspector Chumley asked,

“How did you get on with the horsey section?”

“The mounted division is more than happy to assist. They put the event in their diary and will send two horses and riders for high viz patrols through the town.”

It was in mid-sentence the little mischievous imp that lives in my brain had some fun.

“The only thing is, Chief Inspector, they require a sweeper supplied by our division.”

“A sweeper?”

“Yes. Someone to follow the horses with a brush and shovel to pick up the horse manure. They can’t supply one on that day.”

“You are kidding!”

“I know it is an imposition, but according to them, they can’t do it for us unless we supply a sweeper. Too many complaints from the public if they don’t.”



Malky McEwan
The Haven

Thinker. At least, I think I am. If you have a curious mind, join here: