- Elon Musk finished his China trip with a late-night speech to staff at Tesla’s Shanghai Gigafactory.
- He told them their hard work “warms my heart” and is “very important” for the world.
- His visit came six weeks after some workers complained about performance bonuses being cut.
In a late night speech, Elon Musk told Tesla workers at the Shanghai Gigafactory that their hard work “warms my heart.”
A video posted by the Chinese state newspaper Global Times shows Musk addressing his staff on Wednesday.
“Thank you for being here late at night,” he begins. “It’s been incredibly impressive how you have been able to overcome so many difficulties and so many challenges.”
“I just want to let you know, it warms my heart,” Musk said, tapping his chest before a fist pump.
He also made a heart sign with his hands, similar to the one he was filmed making while dancing at a nightclub in San José del Cabo, Mexico, last month.
“There’s so much positive energy, getting things done, that actually, I think, will be very important not just for Tesla but also for the world,” Musk added.
Six weeks before his visit, Reuters reported that staff at the Shanghai Gigafactory had performance bonuses cut following a fatal accident.
Tesla workers then criticized Musk on Chinese social media, and some people even complained to his mom on Twitter.
Wednesday’s visit wasn’t the first time he’s praised Chinese Tesla staff’s hard work. Last year, Musk praised the Shanghai factory’s 20,000 staff for their work ethic, saying: “They will be burning the 3 a.m. oil.”
That came as some workers were required to sleep on the factory floor according to an internal memo, in order to keep production going during China’s strict COVID lockdowns.
He’s also been encouraging Twitter staff to stay late at the office, building bedrooms at its San Francisco headquarters and telling them to work 80-hour weeks.
Musk told CNBC he sleeps around six hours a night, and according to Jimmy Soni’s book “The Founders,” Musk was “perpetually sleep-deprived” at his first startup, Zip2.
Musk bought hamburgers and soft drinks for the roughly 100 staff in attendance in Shanghai, and left after an hour, according to Bloomberg.
Tesla did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.