Can you imagine Ratan Tata talking off the cuff, smoking on TV? Or can you wrap your mind over a scene where we see Godrej talking weird and then backtracking? And any kind of weird behavior from Ambani, be it Anil or Mukesh? Simply not possible.
That’s the thought that comes to mind when we read with a lot of pain the way Tesla’s Elon Musk is behaving off late. Two days ago, apart from smoking weed or marijuana, Musk spent two-and-half on the Joe Rogan Show, going on a self-pity trip, talking weird like his brain being a "never-ending explosion" of ideas that most people wouldn't want to experience, he told Joe; saying that running Tesla is the hardest job.
Musk sipped whisky and it looked like Musk was all about stoking his ego, making a complete fool of himself. Smoking weed in California is legal and the host of the show was smoking it; so Musk too took a puff saying that it was legal, so it did not matter.
It’s not about the legality of smoking weed but more about the public conduct of a CEO. Don’t CEO’s, who are sources of motivation and inspiration have to be careful about how they behave when in public? Musk smoking weed in public, even if legal, sends out a wrong message to lakhs of people who look up to him. Musk could shrug off this saying that he does not follow rules and cannot be guided by what to do in public and what not to. That’s how this maverick genius has always been. So whatever he does and says, may or may not be an indication of his mental health.
Many are saying that this bizarre behavior indicates that he has come off the hinge; the stress of SpaceX and Tesla has taken a toll on his mental health. His recent accusations of pedophilia and child rape against a rescue diver — not backed by evidence — have indeed raised serious questions about his state of mind.
There is no doubt that Musk is a genius but at the same time, it is also a very known truth that he likes to tell everyone about his greatness. He has a mammoth ego and cannot tolerate criticism; he is known to have destroyed career of people who have tried to point fingers at him or found faults. Yes, reminds one of another genius – Steve Jobs.
The Tesla stock is taking a huge beating with Musk’s bizarre public behavior and rants on Twitter. Two of his high ranking executives quit over the weekend. More than the weird behaviour of Musk, what is bothersome is the quitting of these executives. The interpretation of these quitting’s is that if the company needs to bring is someone at the top level, to work directly alongside Musk, it would be downright tough as Musk, is known be a “nano-manager.” But if it is stress causing this behavior, Musk seriously needs to bring in a second-in-command.
A person heading a company is extremely important as he/she is directly responsible for the shareholders, partners and all those financially entwined with his company. The debate rages world over – whether the CEOs health is a private matter? When the company is CEO-centric, when the CEO is the face of the company and controls all functions in the company, then from a moral or ethical angle the company may choose to disclose to the regulatory authority about the long absence of the CEO from business.
Maybe, just as SEBI stipulates that companies declare their financial health, maybe it is time to ask promoters to show a certificate of good health too…..what say?