Indian billionaire businessman and chairman of the Mahindra Group, Anand Gopal Mahindra, has shared his thoughts about what Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s biggest contribution really is. According to Mahindra, Musk’s biggest contribution is not Tesla, SpaceX, or any of his companies — it is his willingness to take risks.
The Indian billionaire businessman shared his thoughts following the initial test flight of SpaceX’s Starship rocket, which experienced a rapid unscheduled disassembly minutes into its mission. Despite its dramatic end, Musk and SpaceX set expectations low about the test flight, with the CEO noting that he would be happy as long as Starship did not blow up the launch pad.
In true SpaceX fashion, Elon Musk and his employees promptly got back to work following Starship’s fiery end. Musk thanked SpaceX’s team on social media, and he also highlighted that there were many things that were learned during Starship’s maiden flight.
SpaceX shared the same sentiment, noting that “With a test like this, success comes from what we learn, and we learned a tremendous amount about the vehicle and ground systems today that will help us improve on future flights of Starship.”
While Starship’s dramatic end caught a lot of flak and mockery among Musk’s critics online, Mahindra noted that the SpaceX CEO’s capability to move forward following such a failure is something remarkable. The Indian billionaire businessman stated that many others would probably be permanently discouraged after experiencing such a failure.
“The most significant contribution to business by Elon Musk will not be Tesla or SpaceX but his unwavering attitude towards risk. Most people would be permanently discouraged by such a ‘failure.’ However, by treating each initiative as a learning experiment (and having the resources to do so), you essentially expand the boundaries of knowledge and progress. Salute!” Mahindra wrote.
Mahindra’s comments highlight something that numerous Musk critics typically forget about the CEO. While it’s easy to criticize Musk for his volatile behavior on social media, and while his political comments are low-hanging fruit for controversies, he is still an overt optimist that stubbornly refuses to give up despite experiencing a mountain of failures. And that, ultimately, is among the reasons why Tesla and SpaceX have reached their current heights.
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