9 ex-Tesla employees reveal the best parts of working there

TeslaNine former Tesla employees, who worked at the company between 2008 and this year, described to Business Insider their favourite parts of their jobs.
  • While Tesla is a demanding place to work, there are advantages that come with the fast pace and long hours, former employees have told Business Insider.
  • Nine former employees described their favourite parts of working at the electric-car maker.
  • Their tenures at Tesla collectively span from 2008 to 2019.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Tesla, like many companies, is a complex organisation and the experiences that employees have there can vary.

But while the electric-car maker is a demanding place to work, there are advantages that come with the fast pace and long hours, former employees have told Business Insider.

Nine former employees who worked at the company between 2008 and 2019 described their favourite parts of their jobs. (Before interviews that covered a broad range of topics, they asked for anonymity due to a fear of reprisal from Tesla.)

Here’s what they said.

Are you a current or former Tesla employee? Do you have an opinion about what it’s like to work there? Contact this reporter at [email protected].


Seeing how excited customers were when they received their cars

Andy Cross/The Denver Post via Getty Images

“The best part was really just working with an amazing team of inspired people who want to make the world a better place and, of course, delivering that awesome Tesla experience to customers – getting them into their cars, seeing that look on their face for the first time when they either use Autopilot or slam on the accelerator,” a former salesperson said.


Tesla’s reputation

Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images

“Tesla had that cool factor,” the former salesperson added. “I’d walk around town with my work badge all the time just because I wanted to show off that I worked at Tesla.”


A collaborative culture

Tesla

“The environment that I started with was amazing,” a former delivery employee said. “It felt like everyone wanted to come to work. Everyone wanted to be there. It felt like a real family-shop vibe. People, if they saw you were getting stressed, they’d try to help divvy out your workload, so they’d kind of step in, and everyone would help each other out.”


Employee discounts

Tesla

“You got discounts everywhere,” including at movie theatres and Disneyland, a former production employee said.


Being able to watch the engineers work

Matthew DeBord/Business InsiderA first-generation Tesla Roadster.

“My favourite part of Tesla was being able to sit around people who designed [the vehicles],” a former production employee said. “These engineers were just brainiacs,” he said, adding that he once watched a Tesla engineer drive a Roadster from the passenger’s seat after plugging his computer into the car.

SEE ALSO: Apply here to attend IGNITION: Transportation, an event focused on the future of transportation, in San Francisco on October 22.


The high standards

Tesla

“The best part working for Tesla is they hired really good people most of the time, and if you’re not really good, you get let go,” a former delivery employee said. “You have to believe in what you’re doing in those buildings or you’re not going to have a spot tomorrow. I think that was the best part because it took me back to the camaraderie I had in the military.”


How the company adapts and the fast pace

Tesla

“The best thing about a company like Tesla is that the ability and willingness to change and adapt in an instant was always there,” said a former employee who worked on customer-service initiatives, citing as an example Tesla’s delivery operation during the third and fourth quarters of 2018. During each, the company set a record for the most vehicles delivered in one quarter, a record that was broken again this year.

“In any experience I’ve ever had with any other company, Tesla moved faster than anyone else,” the former employee said.


Being able to build things

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

“My favourite part, aside from the coworkers, is that I get to build stuff,” a former production employee, who has since left the company, said. “I enjoy putting stuff together.”


The level of commitment from coworkers

Ng Han Guan/Associated PressA Tesla Model S.

“The best thing was how bought-in everyone was to the company and the mission,” a former salesperson said.


Autonomy

REUTERS/Mike Blake

“The best part is you control your own destiny,” a former engineer said. “[CEO Elon Musk] literally gives you as much rope as you want.”

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.