Tesla CEO Elon Musk has given a wide-ranging interview to the New York Times in which he opened up about the struggles he has dealt with in the past year. Musk told the publication, “This past year has been the most difficult and painful year of my career. It was excruciating.” Among the struggles Musk says he has dealt with due to running his multiple companies are failing health and nearly missing his brother’s wedding in order to meet Tesla production targets. Musk also said that recently he has been working 120 hours per week, adding, “There were times when I didn’t leave the factory for three or four days–days when I didn’t go outside.”
Musk has come under criticism lately for his erratic and aggressive behavior, including lashing out at the press on Twitter and calling one of the Thai cave rescue divers a “pedo.” Though Musk did not specifically attribute those actions to his stress levels, a link can be inferred. As for Musk’s future, the New York Times reports that Tesla’s board has been trying for years to recruit a number two executive in the form of a chief operating officer to help take over some of Musk’s day-to-day duties running the business. Though Musk told the Times that he had no knowledge of any recruitment drive for a COO, people familiar with the matter say the board’s search has intensified in the wake of Musk’s recent tweets.