What Twitter’s Uncertain Future Reveals about Leadership

Do you still think that Elon Musk is a tech genius? Yes, he is a billionaire, but he is also another rich example of poor leadership.

Has capitalism taught us nothing? Money can’t buy you love or leadership abilities. It also should not determine who oversees a community. Because greed is not a virtue, and communities repurposed to make money become factories.

However, money could buy you a blue check mark on the bird app for a few weeks. A status symbol for content creators who had worked to gain a sizable following and verification for journalists and celebrities against impersonators, this blue tick, as it is known in the United Kingdom, was available for the low, low price of $8 a month.

Musk had hoped the subscription plan would increase revenue, but it failed for all the obvious reasons, as persons began impersonating him, George W. Bush and Eli Lilly and Company. The parody account of this pharmaceutical company issued a tweet announcing that insulin was now free, causing its stock to plummet.

The repurposed badge could now be checked off as a bad idea because it also turns out that Twitter users were not going to throw their money at the new owner’s problem.

With his most recent $44 billion dollar purchase, Musk reminds us that banknotes can’t buy you management skills or vision. Just because you have the cash (after pawning your Tesla stock and securing loans) to purchase a company doesn’t mean that you are now qualified to run it.

At 2 a.m. on Wednesday, November 16, Elon Musk sent an email to his employees, offering them a choice to become “extremely hardcore” and work “long hours at high intensity” for Twitter 2.0 in an effort to rebuild the company or to take three months severance. It was an early morning ultimatum but not too early for employees to resign en masse.

The subject line read, “fork in the road,” and these employees chose to go wherever the wind blows with cash in hand. Musk is now trying to persuade some workers to stay, and after this failed “loyalty oath,” Twitter office buildings closed temporarily.

It just goes to show you that when you think you’re the smartest person in the office at a company built for community, you might find yourself alone.

Needless to say, thousands of heads put together are better than one. With the Twitter staff already cut from 7,500 to 3,750, Musk’s “hardcore” email has ended with him trying to save face as hundreds more leave.

Someone should take his phone. Is the little blue bird not telling him anything?

Referred to in some social media circles as “Phony Starks,” a play on a fictional character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe Tony Starks also known as Iron Man, Musk is increasingly being viewed as someone who merely plays the role of a wealthy businessman and inventor.

Less this information be lost in a Twitterstorm, Tesla was not his idea. The creators are Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning. Musk came on as the company’s fourth CEO and at one point held $90 billion dollars in stock. He sold $30 billion to buy Twitter, which may not be with us for much longer.

Twitter users on the platform have already started tweeting messages of condolences, using #RIPTwitter and asking their followers to join them on TikTok, Instagram, Mastadon and Substack. Because the conversations must go on.

Twitter, whose mission is to “serve the public conversation,” is now being talked about in the past tense. Because communities should not be led by people simply because they have the most dollars and cents.

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