Twitter’s new CEO Elon Musk appears to be desperate because of a historic workforce reduction followed by mass resignation. Tech journalist Zoe Schiffer got emails sent by Musk to Twitter’s remaining employees, in which Musk asked “anyone who can actually write software” to report to the company’s headquarters in San Francisco on Friday.
Multiple reports claim that Twitter’s offices have been closed, and I have revoked employee badge access until Monday, while I said Musk to be patrolling the office grounds with close confidantes. This came after Musk gave employees a deadline to either commit to his Twitter 2.0 vision of hardcore engineering or bid farewell to the company with a three-month severance package in hand.
According to Insider and Fortune, few people want to join Musk on his quest to reinvent Twitter, with between 1,000 and 1,200 employees quitting. Musk did not appear to have expected the mass departure, which has left Twitter with just over 2,000 employees, down from over 7,000 just a few weeks ago. Musk appears to be concerned, as he summoned the entire workforce — particularly the coding talent — to a team call and asked them to provide the most relevant piece of code they had written at Twitter.
Musk invited employees to attend the meeting in person, saying, “if possible, I would encourage you to fly to SF to present, in person.” What is truly bizarre is that Musk asked the engineers to send details of code they had pushed in the previous six months, or to bring screenshots of the “most salient lines of code” they had written recently to the meeting.
According to Reuters, Musk also stated in the email that he would be in person at Twitter’s office until midnight and then return on Saturday morning. The mercurial CEO, who is currently facing labor lawsuits and possible regulatory scrutiny, informed employees he will allow “short, technical interviews” to better understand the core system that keeps the social media platform running.
Twitter is in a precarious position right now, and social media is buzzing with speculation that the platform will fail. Twitter is already rehiring some employees who were let go in the first wave of massive layoffs following Musk’s agreement.
The entire board has vanished, top security and compliance minds have also left, content moderation staff has been drastically reduced, and core system teams have been gutted. Musk recently tweeted that he isn’t concerned because “the best people are staying.”