Published on February 21st, 2020 | by Johnna Crider0
Ben Wehrman: “7 Things I Learned While Working At Tesla”
February 21st, 2020 by Johnna Crider
This is the story of a former Tesla employee, Ben Wehrman, who wound up working for Tesla while he was traveling. His blog post shares 7 things that he learned while working at Tesla and sheds light on the atmosphere as well as the love Tesla owners have for their vehicles.
He’d always dreamt of working for a sustainability champion when he was in the states, but he had no idea that the opportunity would come while he was traveling. Wehrman had what he described as a quarter-life crisis adventure, and this is the time when he worked for Tesla. “That is such a score, and I’m so incredibly thankful for that experience,” he writes in his blog post.
This adventure for him started just a month into his New Zealand Working Holiday. He received what he calls the most epic phone call of his life. A Tesla recruiter found his work with sustainability projects online and contacted him to see if he wanted to join the team on a 3-month contract. “I said yes. Duh,” he writes.
In what he describes as the coolest freakin’ job ever, Wehrman worked from November 2019 through January 2020 and described it as an incredible opportunity. He worked at Tesla in Auckland, New Zealand, and was able to receive training across multiple roles. In this three month period, he learned 7 major things that I will briefly highlight here.
1. “Teslas Are Insanely Fun.” Wehrman had never been a car person (like me!) and never had a dream car, but the Model 3 changed that for him. “Teslas are true alien spaceship technology,” he writes.
2. “Tesla Is Not A Car Company.” This is something many don’t understand. Although Wehrman knew this before, while working at Tesla, this point was driven home. “It’s a full-blown fossil-fuel curbstomp machine,” he writes.
3. “The Employees Are Top-Notch.” Wehrman says that his coworkers in his Tesla work family were everything that you could ask for in a team: welcoming, smart, open-minded, scrappy, and passionate about building a bright future. “Elon has created a management pipeline that puts a premium on folks who embody all of these characteristics, and I can confirm from personal experience: It’s paying off BIG-time.”
4. “The Work Environment Is Awesome.” Wehrman describes an environment that created a company in which the employees are truly a part. Tesla’s employees know they are a huge part of a company that is changing many industries. “These employees feel that, and working at Tesla creates its own feedback loop of high energy and motivation in this office.”
5. “Every Customer Becomes A Salesperson.” This made me think of Earl on Twitter, @28DelaysLater, and his referral code. (If you don’t follow Earl, you must.) Wehrman tells us in his post that he met with very happy customers daily. He had to walk them through the functions of their new cars, and it was the same thing every time. “Their face would LIGHT UP with each new feature I showed them,” he writes.
6. “The EV Industry Transcends Cutthroat Competition.” Speaking for himself, Wehrman writes that he thinks that the majority of Tesla’s employees, as well as investors, would agree that Tesla fans care about the EV revolution as a whole. They would gladly welcome EV newcomers that are joining the fight against big oil. “Folks, this is unheard of in the business world, and just goes to show that the EV movement is not just about profits — it’s about changing the world for the better.”
7. “Tesla Is Becoming A Cultural Phenomenon.” Wehrman would often be flagged down by strangers when he wore his Tesla work uniform and badge. People would ask him about Tesla, what it’s like working there, and what Elon’s secrets were behind the scenes. More and more people love tech, and even more love environmental sustainability. Tesla is a sweet blend of both, and Wehrman writes, “This is the result of the company’s masterful execution of free, widespread marketing: EVERYONE is curious about what the heck Tesla is up to.”
Wehrman’s post is a refreshing look into the world of Tesla from the point of view of an employee who scored a dream job while traveling. It may have been only three months, but those three months made a difference in his life for the better and gives us a snapshot of what Tesla is truly about. You can read his full post here.
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