Finally took some time and went through my inbox and found this interesting piece. The interview is from the first day of U.S. Air Force Space Pitch Day, November 5, 2019.
The sound quality is poor, but it’s an interview I appreciate. He makes me want to be a better person. Work harder, keep going, and help create good in the world. Elon is not a perfect person, but he shares his flaws and it allows for the acceptance of flaws within ourselves.
Elon was asked “Is it better to contract work out or do it internally?” He said SpaceX started out by outsourcing, but that didn’t work out.
In space, the supply chain is not great. Limited suppliers and legacy ‘supplies’ have their own limitations. So SpaceX makes 90%+ of its rockets. If you want something revolutionary, you can’t do catalogue engineering.
Some tidbits from the interview:
- Groups should step on each others toes
- Organizational flaws show up in the product
- Everyone should have a good (overall) understanding of the product link
- Management in small vs big companies link
- Top engineers want to keep working on cool things
- Assume you’re always at least partially wrong link
- Setting up the company’s employee reward structure to incentivize risk-taking link 1 link 2