The Dangers of Trying To Reinvent An Industry, And A Few Notes on Tesla | Coyote Blog
The fact that Musk is not an auto executive could be a benefit, but it has not been. In the education industry, Salman Khan revolutionized learning with his Khan Academy's free learning platform, and incredibly high-quality tools to help parents and teachers understand when and where each child is and the problems they are having learning whether it be math, economics or something different.
Khan experimented on YouTube to teach his cousins. When others found his videos and let him know how valuable they were, he began to produce more. In the end, he built K-12 math program and likely has now addressed most of the college-level math. This slow process allowed Khan to experiment with education and the tools necessary to track the students' educational progress. Mistakes and hiccups were worked through by the users and Khan, so the learning process and Khan's ability to learn and integrate knowledge was never compromised. This organic model is probably the best but is very difficult to produce in the real world. The YouTube compensation scheme allowed this to happen until Khan was able to attract a few high dollar donors.
An analogy for the Khan model was that Khan was trying to learn to ride pro PBR level bulls. He did so by starting on a hobby horse, then moving to a well-mannered horse, to a strong-willed horse, to a green broken horse, to an unbroken horse, to smaller bulls moving incrementally to larger and more aggressive bulls until he finally was riding pro PBR level bulls.
On the other hand, Musk decided to experiment on automating final assembly during production. This was essentially the opposite of what Khan did and quickly created serious, intractable problems which dog Tesla and Musk today. A reasonable analogy would be that Musk was trying to learn how to ride pro PBR level bulls by riding pro PBR level bulls right out of the first gate. That is not possible.
The problem Musk has run into is the Peter Principle which is a variant of the Dunning-Kruger Effect. Once the individual high centers it is all but impossible to continue to learn and integrate experiences into his knowledge base. The reason is he is in uncharted territory, and the problems are too tricky and come too fast leaving him off balance; his means he cannot learn and integrate knowledge. The solution is to backtrack to the point where the individual is competent and start again. The failure to backtrack was Obama's core problem and the reason he was not just incompetent but incapable of learning his way out of his myriad problems.
No one is willing to walk back to the place of their competence and start over. I am not knocking Musk or Obama. These people must be walked back by others. Usually, this requires employment termination. I suggest Musk take control of SpaceX and hire an actual auto executive to run Tesla. The shareholders may need to walk Musk back.