Sample HR Management Paper on an Analysis of the Existing Human Behavior at Tesla Motors and a Recommendable Change Plan on how the Multinational Company can Optimize the Performance

Abstract
Among the key roles of a human resource manager is the ability to generate energy and
commitment among their employees and channel it towards attaining the critical organizational
goals. A human resource manager must therefore understand their influence on the root causes of
human behavior and attitudes around the organization, as well as the surrounding organizational
context. Though doing relatively good in the international market, Tesla Motors have not had the
most positive human resource report over the last decade. This report reviews the existing human
behavior in the multinational company and recommends a change plan that could assist the
company restructure their workforce to better their operations.
The report is divided into three key sections, the introduction, human resource issues, and the
recommended change plan. Section one serves to introduce Tesla Motors as a multinational
cooperation and the general organizational behavior. Section two reviews prevailing HR issues
prevalent in the organization as per the available secondary information to determine the root
cause of Tesla woes. These include labor violation, work and life balance, health and safety,
talent optimization and workforce layoff. Based on the prevailing challenges analyzed in section
two, Tesla Motors needs to turn things around if they want to retain a competitive advantage as
Multinational Corporation. Section three recommends a change plan that the company could
adopt to improve organizational behavior. These strategies include enhancing and aligning on the
business strategy, identification of leadership gaps in the company, hiring and developing
qualified and talented workforce, diagnosing employees’ data and consistent inspiration of
employees.

Introduction

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Tesla Motors was founded in 2003 by a group of engineers who wanted to reduce environmental
challenges resulting from emissions in fossil fueled cars to introduce electric cars for a better,
quicker and more fun to drive experience (Hardman 2015). Since then, the company has retained
a top position in production of electric cars with new models of electric cars such as model S,
model X, and the most recent invention, the modern 3 that the company stipulates to be both cost
friendly and yet a high volume electric car meant is meant to target medium class customers
(Hoffman 2011). The company also holds a gigantic factory referred to as Gigafactory 1 that is
designed to assist the costs of cell batteries thus reducing the cost of manufacturing (Donada
2019). However negative human behavior has led to deterioration of the company’s operations
since 2016. This report reviews the existing human behavior at Tesla motors by reviewing its
stronghold and weaknesses and analyzing its impacts on the international operations of the
company. Further, it recommends an adoptable change plan that could assist the company
resolve these challenges and regain its track in business.

Human resource issues
Despite the far reaching success experienced by the company, recent reports have indicated a
turn down in the company operations over the last three years. Cases of crashed auto mobiles
while on auto pilot mode have contributed to significant decline in the company’s stock by 2.8 %
(Chen 2018). A collaboration with a Japanese company known as Panasonic in the Gigafactory
to the facilitate production of batteries saw the company step down following consistent losses
with the company. Further, there have been consistent challenges with achieving the company’s
goal of releasing the model 3 electric car, with consumer reports no longer endorsing the model
citing deteriorated reliability concerns. Also, the company records the highest number of
employee injuries despite the claims by the CEO, Elon Musk, that they are always considerate of

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the labor force welfare. While, the CEO, Elon Musk is loved for his successful innovation, the
CEO is reported to have changed significantly leading to his ousting as chairman of the board,
has had a rather rough time with the judicial system to an extent of being forced to apologize for
his bizarre statements against Tesla laborers following their attempts to unionize and being
termed by employees to have a combative and explosive leadership style. A comparison of Tesla
Motors five years ago would make an individual wonder the root source of the mayhem at the
company. A company that is considered so innovative has turned to be revolutionary broken with
business, leadership and employee wrangles presenting all at a go. As Clark (2015) stated, all
business problems are essentially people problems. Almost all of these challenges can be
associated with the current human behavior, with the human resource department outlined in
most reports as the leading cause to the failures in the company. Just recently, the head of human
resource resigned from his position following the uncontrolled human resource conditions.
Since the company was founded, it has strived to leverage best talents through empowerment and
consistent hiring of super talents. Human resource management has been key in enhancing the
success of the company. However, since the resignation of Juliana Bednarski, the human
resource manager and his counterpart Head of Global Employee Engagement in 2016,
performance management at the company has turned out to be a mystery (Nichols 2019). The
company has inversely revolved from employee development strategies to stack ranking, a move
in which the recent challenges on the company can be attributed (Nichols 2019). Human
behavior has significantly evolved to healthy employee relations to random sackings, poor
working standards and labor violation among other weaknesses. This section reviews the
consistent changes on human behavior and the corresponding effects to production at the
company.

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Labor laws violation
Despite that the United States allows workers to form a union to champion their rights, Tesla
Motors does not abide by these provisions. Reports by CNN indicated that the company has
consistently violated labor laws by threatening employees who attempt to unionize causing
divisions between the leadership and the labor force (Michl 2017). This is because when there is
clear evidence of misusing employees in the company, the human resource management does not
act to protect the employees, probably due to the dictatorial nature of the company’s CEO.
Further, there have been frequent cases in courts in California after the CEO was sued for
sabotaging the efforts by Tesla Motors employees to form a union. In the company’s firm in
California, the efforts of over twelve thousand employees to create a workers union have been
thwarted by security guards and the management (Dobbs 2016). However, these cases will
always turn to be a slap in the wrist since despite being convicted guilty since the National Labor
Relations Board will always file a petition on the federal appeals court that rules in favor of
Tesla Motors (Chen 2019). This leaves Tesla Motors employees as the only labor force without a
unionized workforce among the automakers in the United States.
Talent optimization
Another weakness in human behavior at Tesla is the lack of recognition and utilization of special
talents at the company. In May 2018, Musk announced the setting aside of all contractors at the
company regardless of whether they were independent or through a staffing company. In the
message, the company boss reported that the only survival chance that the contractors had was
the willingness of a Tesla employee to step aside and assign their position to the contractor
(Murmann 2018). While this step may be seen to cut down operational cost, the company failed
in setting aside talents that were crucial towards the operation of the company. The managements

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need to align talents to the business strategy and ensure that they merge the right talents with
business operations before laying off employees inconsiderately.
Workforce layoff
Another challenging human behavior at Tesla Motors are the frequent cases of employee layoffs
in the company. This behavior is demoting the commitment of most employees. Having
observed a huge number of employees laid off, employees have low morale as they work in fear
and speculation of being fired. For instance, the company recently fired over 9% percent of its
work force totaling to three thousand employees (Murmann 2018). In the statement by the
company, the company reported that it was a strategy to promote quality production after
reviewing the performance of its employees. Further, the company’s CEO has the tendency to
scare employees on plausible sackings whenever he feels that an employee is not performing to
standard and also consistently threatens them of possible firing. For instance, in an interview
with one of the fired workers, a local magazine reported that most employees were always afraid
to meet with the manager as he could simply fire a person over a question not sufficiently
answered (Zhang 2018). In what they described as “Musk’s firing fury”, the CEO is reported to
be angered by the simplest of things such as perfumes, with the human resource manager
advising employees to keep off him whenever they had applied them (Liu 2016). Such states of
tension are a demolition to the employees’ productivity. For instance, in a recent case where an
engineer had been promoted to work at the company, it is reported that Musk fired him in their
first meeting after accusing the engineer of committing a machine he had not touched. Tesla also
lacks a consistent and objective reward system. The company rewards its employees based on
Elon Musk’s opinions after conducting frequent performance reviews. This is despite the fact
that Musk is reported to change his mind over a product in most occasions thus disregarding and

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thwarting employee efforts (Dobbs 2016). Consequently, most workers at Tesla Motors are
ejected from the company even before they have been appreciated for their efforts. The company
need to suggest a consistent reward system with gifts, holidays, promotions and breaks to
motivate the workers and also enable them balance between work and personal life (Liao 2018).
Health and safety
With the burning desire to launch the Model 3 automotive which is meant to break records as the
cheapest electric cars, Tesla Motors has hired thousands of firms to help them accomplish the
mission. However, despite hiring the numerous number of employees, Tesla has consistently
failed in ensuring the safety of employees when in operation. In a review by Forbes, Tesla had
reported at least fifty four fines following their violation to facilitate employee health and safety
(Maine 2019). Human resource management has consistently failed at satisfying the health needs
for their employees. Compared to other motor plants, Tesla has recorded the most charges on
health and safety violations. Over the last five years, Tesla has paid fines worth 236730 dollars
following these violation, a figure that exceeds the second ranked company in terms of fine
charges with at least seven times (Chen 2018). These reports presents Tesla as a chaotic place to
work in, one that is not responsible enough to recognize the health of its employees.
Furthermore, the company is always reluctant to provide medical attention to workers who get
injuries while at service. In an injury report in 2018, where a Tesla’s rear hatch door dropped on
an employee who was servicing the truck, the Center for Investigative Reporting indicated
that the worker claimed lack of sufficient medical care from the clinic contracted by the
company. In another case, the company had to pay a fine worth twenty six thousand dollars after
they failed to cater for medical expenses for a contract worker who got their pelvic bone
fractures by a forklift within the company’s recycling area. Though the company defends

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themselves to always cover up for work injuries, whistleblowers who were denied to form a
laborers union by the CEO still report consistent injuries in the haste to compete with time in
completion of model 3 car (Chen 2019). The company reported the injury rate at 6.2 per every
100 workers, a figure that is way up compared to the standard 4.2 per every 100 workers. Most
of these injuries were attributed to the rush in building ore Model 3 cars, a move that prompted
most workers to be in operation for over ten hours daily including weekends as per Musk’s
demand (Cheng 2016). In an interview with most workers, they indicated that while they could
hold the pressure for three week days, most reported cases of tiredness and injuries from the
fourth day. Generally, human behavior related to employees at Tesla Motors have constantly
deteriorated following lack of the company to address their health and safety issues (Li 2018).
This explains the stagnation in some of the projects, with some employees failing to work
satisfactorily thus limiting their productivity (Lashley 2017). The human resource need to
address this challenge to facilitate efficient operations at the company.
Company Number of OSHA violations

2014-2019

OSHA fines IN DOLLARS

Tesla Motors 54 236730
BMW 0 0
Nissan 5 33700
Toyota 4 0
Ford 4 29918
Subaru 0 0
GM 0 0
Mercedes-Benz 2 16741

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KIA 2 9180
Tabular representation of OSHA violations and fine levels among Automobiles companies in the
United States

Change plan
Despite the significant challenges, Tesla still holds a top position in production of electric cars.
Admittedly, like in most companies, Tesla woes can be attributed to rise from the top leadership.
However, at least 77% of the employees are reported to still like their CEO, though only 57% are
likely to recommend Tesla Motors to others (Michl 2017). This means that while the company
may have waivered from its visionary goal, a small rectification of the human behavior would
turn the company back to the wave of success. The company needs to review the human
behavior and adopt an effective change plan act that will act accordingly to safeguard the
interests of the company. This section provides some recommendable actions that the company
could incorporate in the change plan to relight its labor force.
Identification of leadership gaps in the company
Most human challenges at Tesla Motors are attributed to leadership challenges at the company.
For instance, though most of these employees love the creative ability of their CEO, most of
them will always evade an encounter with him following his consistent range and fury (Hess
2018). Further, there have been significant wrangles with the human resource department as
most leaders resign due to woes with the employees and the executives. Tesla should reevaluate
its leadership team to ensure they are fit to relate positively with employees. There are different
strategies that can be used to evaluate the leadership team. The company could use a personality-
based behavioral assessment to identify the approach that team members have on work,
communication and decision making. Through these, senior leaders will get informed on the

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needs of employees and become more self- aware. As a result, this will ease collaboration,
communication and relationships between all shareholders. A collaborative workforce combines
creativity, innovation and manual labor to come up with solutions on challenges facing the
company.
Another strategy would involve a deep scrutiny of the competency of certain leaders in the firm.
Since 2016, the human resource department has contributed to significant challenges in the
company (Michl 2017). The company needs to understand that while leaders need to be
entrepreneurial and more creative, the human resource department demands a disciplined,
process adaptable and stable leaders. Therefore, through leadership evaluation, the company can
access the ability of the team to stretch and develop to meet strategic demands or whether the
company presents an urge to hire new leaders to fill revealed gaps. Based on the review of Tesla
Motors, there are minimum senior leadership gaps left to be filled. However, the company needs
to reconsider and restructure the human resource department.
Talent development
A review at Tesla’s failure in achieving the Model 3 target reveals that despite the high number
of employees in the company, the firm lacks adequate talent (Chen 2019). Further, based on the
recent control of human behavior at the company, lack of talented human resource managers is
eminent comparing to the position of the company about five years ago. The company needs to
identify and hire top notch talents to shift the company back to the right track. With employees
who are behaviorally wired towards the company’s strategy, the company will easily assign
different employees tasks based on their level of qualification (Mangram 2013). The best way
Tesla can achieve talented employees is through talent analytics, a strategy that involves
supporting and informing business strategy through people data (Helmond et al. 2017). For

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instance, through the referral program, research indicates that referral employees are likely to
stay in a company for a longer duration of time. Also, employees who get their referrals hired
will most likely stay in the company over a longer period (Stai 2011). Consequently, through this
system of talent analytics, human resource managers at the company should identify high quality
employees and seek for referrals from them. Generally, with a talented set of leadership and
employees. Tesla will easily swerve to its normal operations and regain its competitive
advantage.
Enhancing and aligning on the business strategy
Although Tesla may have easily penetrated the auto industry through innovation, the company
management needs to understand that they require a define business strategy to achieve some
business goals. For instance, the company’s CEO is over optimistic in completely
revolutionizing the motor world but has no define business strategy (Maine 2019). In most
occasions, Must will give instructions and end up getting angry when the end product is not
according to his speculations (Talla et al. 2016). The company needs to define a business
strategy that will help them achieve their goals. Further, the company should understand that
despite the dire desire for change, they should be patient and align by the strategy step by step till
they accomplish their final goals.
Diagnosing employees’ data and prescribing relevant actions
A review of Tesla employees is enough to inform any manager that their engagement and morale
are down. Based on ongoing report, most employees at the company live in mayhem and
speculation following the actions that they have observed over the last five years. These
employees have observed a significant number of the employees laid off, with possibilities of
others getting fired based on Musk’s fury of firing, the employees have seen stocks at the

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company go down, they have observed the company fail to fulfil the Model 3 target and also
seen customer reports disregarding the company. Therefore, Tesla Motors should launch an
engagement survey designed to collect critical issues from the workforce. Through the survey,
the management should seek to uncover chronic problems facing the employees (Akpabot et al.
2019.). Also, the surveys should assist the organization in determining the expected steps that
they wish the management to take to make life in the firm, more adoptable. Through the surveys,
Tesla’s management will uncover acute problems in the company such as bad managers, plant
conditions and other factors that contribute to disproportionality in the operation of employees.
After revelation of these problems, the company will comprehend solutions that will give
employees a conducive environment to work. Based on the data collected, the company should
identify the most crucial factors and initialize the change process by acting on them. Based on
trending reports from the company, most challenges rise from an unfavorable company culture.
The employees no longer put their trust in the senior members of the company as there is limited
communication and interaction between them. Also, when actualizing the change plan, the
management should not necessarily focus at making employees happy. Rather, they should be
focused at creating a culture of communication openness and exchange of ideas regardless of the
position of the official (Cooperrider 2017). Through this, workers will be more freed thus
generating comfortability and happiness among them.
Since the root source of challenges at Tesla Motors is concentrated on human behavior,
managers at the company need to start solving the challenge from the roots. This means that the
managers need to get an opportunity with the employees to review the result of the engagement
diagnostic survey, identify all the root challenges and identify long lasting together (Friedman
2016). By simply sitting down in an engagement session with employees, this will assist in

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rebuilding their confidence in that their cries have finally captured the intended attention
(Spohrer 2013). Generally, manager- employee engagements generate dual benefits. To begin
with, such meetings generate a sense of value to employees. Also, through these small actions,
employees feel engaged with company activities thus making them more productive. As a result,
employees will automatically generate the driving force to give extra efforts in the company,
making the company more productive (Akter et al. 2016).
Consistent hiring and inspiration of employees
Tesla management must understand that though they yearn for change to achieve their company
goals, change is not a one-time event. Rather, the process will take time inspiring employees
when at the same time hiring new ones to fill upcoming gaps. Therefore, Tesla needs to engage
in rigorous and consistent hiring of employees with the focus top identify the most suitable and
favorable candidate. Also, the company needs to engage employees in more frequent review
meetings and inspire them to enhance open communication and relationships (Baer 2017). The
company boss should also seek to notify employees on the target products rather than bumping
on them whenever they fail to produce according to his expectations (Liao 2018). To inspire
employees, the company need to facilitate a balance between work and life. This can be achieved
by offering holidays to employees, creating work at home opportunities and taking them on
occasional vacations. Further, motivational strategies should be incorporated in the company
where the company recognizes employee effort via rewards and rank promotions. For instance,
the company may set designated targets and assign a certain department, say the sales group. If
the group achieves a stipulated sale value, the company may opt to reward them with
commissions or other forms of appreciation (Amladi 2017).

Conclusion

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Tesla motors is currently a hub of human resource challenges. The behavior of employees in the
company presents fear, tension and speculation following a rather unfriendly turn of events since
the resignation of the then human resource manager. Since then, there have been consistent firing
of employees, disregarded labor laws by the management, regular injuries and uncatered for
health expenses. Further, employee relationships with the executives have deteriorated pushing
the employees to a helpless corner. Following these situation Tesla’s flow of business have
experienced a significant down turn. Despite the high ranks in innovation, the company reports
failed business practices such as recorded losses in stocks, unfriendly customer reports, and
declined number of sales in the Model 3 car. Major challenges leading to the decline of Tesla
Motors are associated with a failed human resource management. There exist communication
wrangles between the employees and the management such that employees do not play any part
in formulating decisions about their welfare. For instance, the manager has constantly ignored
labor laws by denying the employees an opportunity to form an opportunity to formulate a
worker’s union. Also, employees health is not catered for as significant cases of injuries that
have been recorded have not been solved with the required attention. Further, the management is
redundant on employee motivation in that employees speed excess hours at the work place.
These challenges demand that Tesla adopts an effective change plan else they risk being
overtaken by close competitors. The company should consider defining and aligning by the
business strategy, identify existing leadership gaps, hire and develop talents, engage employees
through open meetings and adopt corrective actions based on the revelations of these meetings.
Also, the company should engage in continuous hiring and inspiring of employees to facilitate
talent optimization. Through these strategies, the company will correctively tackle arising
challenges in human behavior and swerve to the right direction of success.

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