Tesla head of product launches Rich Otto leaves after nearly seven years

Tesla head of product launches Rich Otto leaves after nearly seven years

Tesla Model Y TSLA

Tesla Head of Product Launches Rich Otto has announced that he is leaving the company. The former Tesla head of product launches shared his update and his reasons behind his decision to leave the EV maker in a post on LinkedIn.

Otto worked at Tesla for almost seven years, and he was involved in several key events of the company. These include the 2022 Cyber Rodeo, the launch of the Cybertruck, the Model S Plaid’s first deliveries, and the Cybertruck first delivery event, among others. He also played a part in Tesla’s media projects.

In his post, Otto noted that the thing he will miss most with his work at Tesla is the people he has worked with, as well as its culture. He noted that it is this culture that allows employees to “stretch outside their comfort zone, take on massive projects, and thrive.”

Inasmuch as Tesla was an exciting place for work, however, Otto also noted that the company has “taken its pound of flesh.” He also admitted in his LinkedIn post that morale has taken a hit in Tesla following the recent round of layoffs.

Following is Otto’s LinkedIn post.

After nearly 7 years, last week I resigned from Tesla. 

Why leave? It’s a company I love and that has given me so much, but has also taken its pound of flesh. 

Great companies are made up of equal parts great people and great products, and the latter are only possible when its people are thriving. The recent layoffs that are rocking the company and its morale have thrown this harmony out of balance and it’s hard to see the long-game. It was time for a change.

There’s a lot that I’ll miss about Tesla — its people being #1. I was lucky enough to work across many of the engineering, design, manufacturing, creative, and sales teams that make our cars possible, and I’ve loved the opportunity to lead how we introduced these products to the world.

What makes Tesla special is its collaborate-with-anyone culture: it means that great ideas and influence can come from anyone, and is a catalyst for employees to stretch outside their comfort zone, take on massive projects, and thrive. 

Thank you to everyone who took the time to teach me something over the last 7 years. I learned so much, and hopefully, you learned a thing or two from me in return. 

I’m hopeful that Tesla — and all of the employees affected by these layoffs — can get back on their feet soon. If there’s anything I can do to help, don’t hesitate to reach out. 

I’ll be taking a quick break and then jumping back in to figure out what’s next for me. If you see anything cool – hit me up! 

Oh, and what am I not going to miss? Definitely not the coffee.

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