SpaceX employees draft open letter to company executives denouncing Elon Musks behavior

An open letter to SpaceX decrying CEO Elon Musks current behavior has sparked open dialogue among the many companys employees in an inside chat system. Employees are being inspired to signal onto the letters solutions, both publicly or anonymously, with a signed model of the letter to be delivered to the desk of SpaceX president Gwynne Shotwell.

The letter, reviewed by The Verge, describes how Musks actions and the current allegations of sexual harassment towards him are negatively affecting SpaceXs popularity. The doc claims that employees throughout the spectrum of gender, ethnicity, seniority, and technical roles have collaborated on writing the letter. Its not recognized which SpaceX employees wrote the letter; the employees who posted the letter within the inside chat system haven’t responded to requests for remark.

Elons behavior within the public sphere is a frequent supply of distraction and embarrassment for us, significantly in current weeks, the letter states. As our CEO and most distinguished spokesperson, Elon is seen because the face of SpaceX each Tweet that Elon sends is a de facto public assertion by the company. It is essential to clarify to our groups and to our potential expertise pool that his messaging doesn’t replicate our work, our mission, or our values.

Musk has been doing lots not too long ago, and his presence on Twitter could be significantly crass. In April, he shared a picture of Bill Gates and an emoji of a pregnant man, captioned with in case u want to lose a boner quick. Last 12 months, he additionally responded to a tweet about Jeff Bezos aerospace company Blue Origin, saying Cant get it up (to orbit) lol. Musk can also be at present trying to purchase Twitter.

Shared on Wednesday in an inside SpaceX Microsoft Teams channel with greater than 2,600 employees, the letter argues that the company shouldn’t be dwelling up to its oft-stated No Asshole coverage and its zero-tolerance sexual harassment coverage. The doc goes on to counsel three completely different motion objects to tackle the scenario: SpaceX ought to publicly tackle and condemn Elons dangerous Twitter behavior; the company ought to maintain all management equally accountable for unhealthy behavior; and SpaceX wants to clearly outline what precisely is meant by SpaceXs no-asshole and 0 tolerance insurance policies and implement them constantly.

The variety of signatures was not instantly obtainable, however employees had been requested to signal onto the letter by filling out a survey or scanning a QR code. The letter generated greater than 100 feedback within the Teams channel, with many employees agreeing to the spirit of the missive, in accordance to screenshots of the chat shared by two sources who spoke with The Verge and requested to stay nameless. Some commenters additionally claimed to be embarrassed by Musks behavior. Others expressed a want for the company to higher tackle govt management behavior in addition to sexual harassment complaints.

The letter comes almost a month after a report from Insider alleged that SpaceX paid a former company flight attendant a $250,000 settlement after she accused Musk of exposing himself to her and propositioning her throughout a therapeutic massage, an allegation that concerned Musk providing to purchase her a horse. Musk denied the allegations, telling Insider there’s much more to this story.

If I had been inclined to have interaction in sexual harassment, that is unlikely to be the primary time in my whole 30-year profession that it comes to gentle, he told the outlet. On Twitter, Musk joked in regards to the story in tweet reply: Hi Chad, very long time no see! Fine, should you contact my wiener, you may have a horse.

After the story got here out, Shotwell despatched a company-wide electronic mail to SpaceX employees defending Musk. Personally, I consider the allegations to be false; not as a result of I work for Elon, however as a result of I’ve labored carefully with him for 20 years and by no means seen nor heard something resembling these allegations, Shotwell wrote. Anyone who is aware of Elon like I do, is aware of he would by no means conduct or condone this alleged inappropriate behavior.

This is not the primary time that the subject of sexual harassment at SpaceX has surfaced. In December, a former SpaceX worker wrote an essay on the Lioness platform detailing her expertise with what she described as pervasive sexual harassment on the company. She additionally criticized SpaceXs HR response to her complaints. The Verge spoke with 4 further former SpaceX employees on the time, all of whom argued that the companys HR division improperly dealt with harassment complaints. Before the story got here out, Shotwell emailed the company reiterating the No Asshole coverage.

We additionally know we will all the time do higher, Shotwell wrote in December. That is why HR has been soliciting suggestions from teams throughout the company to guarantee the method is efficient. HR can even conduct an inside audit, adopted by a third-party audit.

A replica of the letter could be learn beneath:


An open letter to the Executives of SpaceX,

In gentle of current allegations towards our CEO and his public disparagement of the scenario, we want to ship suggestions on how these occasions have an effect on our companys popularity, and thru it, our mission. Employees throughout the spectrum of gender, ethnicity, seniority, and technical roles have collaborated on this letter. We really feel it’s crucial to keep sincere and open dialogue with one another to successfully attain our companys major objectives collectively: making SpaceX an excellent place to work for all, and making people a multiplanetary species.

As SpaceX employees we’re anticipated to problem established processes, quickly innovate to remedy advanced issues as a crew, and use failures as studying alternatives. Commitment to these beliefs is prime to our id and is core to how we have now redefined our trade. But for all our technical achievements, SpaceX fails to apply these rules to the promotion of range, fairness, and inclusion with equal precedence throughout the company, leading to a office tradition that is still firmly rooted in the established order.

Individuals and teams of employees at SpaceX have spent vital effort past their technical scope to make the company a extra inclusive area through convention recruiting, open boards, suggestions to management, outreach, and extra. However, we really feel an unequal burden to carry this effort because the company has not utilized applicable urgency and sources to the issue in a fashion according to our method to essential path technical tasks. To be clear: current occasions usually are not remoted incidents; they’re emblematic of a wider tradition that underserves lots of the individuals who allow SpaceXs extraordinary accomplishments. As trade leaders, we bear distinctive duty to tackle this.

Elons behavior within the public sphere is a frequent supply of distraction and embarrassment for us, significantly in current weeks. As our CEO and most distinguished spokesperson, Elon is seen because the face of SpaceXevery Tweet that Elon sends is a de facto public assertion by the company. It is essential to clarify to our groups and to our potential expertise pool that his messaging doesn’t replicate our work, our mission, or our values.

SpaceXs present techniques and tradition don’t dwell up to its said values, as many employees proceed to expertise unequal enforcement of our oft-repeated No Asshole and Zero Tolerance insurance policies. This should change. As a place to begin, we’re placing forth the next classes of motion objects, the specifics of which we want to focus on in individual with the manager crew inside a month:

Publicly tackle and condemn Elons dangerous Twitter behavior. SpaceX should swiftly and explicitly separate itself from Elons private model.

Hold all management equally accountable to making SpaceX an excellent place to work for everybody. Apply a essential eye to points that forestall employees from totally performing their jobs and assembly their potential, pursuing particular and enduring actions which can be properly resourced, clear, and handled with the identical rigor and urgency as establishing flight rationale after a {hardware} anomaly.

Define and uniformly reply to all types of unacceptable behavior. Clearly outline what precisely is meant by SpaceXs no-asshole and 0 tolerance insurance policies and implement them constantly. SpaceX should set up secure avenues for reporting and uphold clear repercussions for all unacceptable behavior, whether or not from the CEO or an worker beginning their first day.

We care deeply about SpaceX’s mission to make humanity multiplanetary. But extra importantly, we care about one another. The collaboration we want to make life multiplanetary is incompatible with a tradition that treats employees as consumable sources. Our distinctive place requires us to think about how our actions in the present day will form the experiences of people past our planet. Is the tradition we’re fostering now the one which we goal to deliver to Mars and past?

We have made strides in that course, however there’s a lot extra to accomplish.

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