If you’ve been paying attention to the world of finance recently, you’d have noticed that Elon Musk’s Tesla company experienced a bit of a downturn on Friday. As it turns out, this dip was all caused by its iconic founder lighting one up during a podcast.
On Friday afternoon, the latest episode of The Joe Rogan Experience podcast was uploaded online. In this edition of the podcast, Rogan’s guest was none other than Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk. During the two-and-a-half hour appearance, Musk didn’t say or do anything particularly offensive, however, he did decide to partake in a bit of marijuana.
“You probably can’t because of stockholders, right?” asked Joe Rogan as he passed Elon Musk the joint that contained a mix of marijuana and tobacco. “Do people get upset at you if you do certain things?”
Now, if you’re not too well-versed in marijuana laws around the world, it is now completely legal to smoke in the US state of California, where the podcast was filmed. However, the seemingly-unprofessional nature of Musk’s actions have had effects that many could never have anticipated.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 7, 2018
As The Guardian reports, Tesla’s shares crashed by a huge 6% on Friday after Elon Musk’s podcast appearance went viral.
In the wake of this market crash, Tesla’s head of accounting, Dave Morton, and head of human resources, Gaby Toledano announced that they were departing the company.
Just one month after first joining the company, Morton’s decision to exit Tesla was caused by “the level of public attention placed on the company, as well as the pace within the company, have exceeded my expectations”.
“This caused me to reconsider my future,” he explained. “I want to be clear that I believe strongly in Tesla, its mission and its future prospects, and I have no disagreements with Tesla’s leadership or its financial reporting.”
On a lighter note though, Elon Musk’s brush with the kush has also resulted in the CEO becoming an instant meme around the world, with images of his faced obscured by smoke clogging up Reddit, Facebook, and even blank walls in Melbourne.
Sadly though, this isn’t the first controversy that the maverick CEO has been involved in over the last couple of months.
While Musk has made headlines in recent weeks for his questionable business decisions, which included announcing funding that was not yet secured, and withdrawing plans for Tesla to go private, it was his comments surrounding the recent Thai cave rescue that truly lowered the public’s opinion of him.
After Musk had referred to a British diver at the centre of the rescue a pedophile, he later retracted his comments and apologised.
Despite the immense wave of backlash that followed, Elon Musk seemed to double-down on his comments last week as part of an email to BuzzFeed, when he reportedly stated, “Off the record, I suggest that you call people you know in Thailand, find out what’s actually going on and stop defending child rapists.”
While Elon Musk might be the absolute master of getting his face into the papers, he might want to take a few steps back and put his foot on the brake, lest he do some irreparable damage to both his public perception and company, especially when both have such great potential to do good in the world.