It was the crack heard round the world.

Imagine that you’re the bold innovator behind Tesla’s glass division. Elon Musk is ready to unveil his brand new prototype Cybertruck that’s bulletproof, impact proof and virtually indestructible. In a rock concert-style press conference with hundreds of raving fans and employees in attendance, you wait with anticipation. And then, a steel snowball is lobbed at the window and in spite of all promises, the glass shatters. Not once, but twice in front of an online audience of millions.

What do you do?

Today’s episode features one of Tesla’s top materials experts, Michael Pilliod, who runs the glass division. We’ll explore how a globally watched “failure” became a learning experience that would change everything. He even brought the steel snowball to the show [watch the YouTube broadcast of the podcast] as a lasting memento of that moment. Some are wondering, “How does this guy still have a job?” Would you survive that public misstep?

We explore how the culture of Tesla allows for very public triumphs and defeats and urges innovators to keep going. Mike’s background as a Product Designer at Apple through the age of the iPad, iPhone, Apple Watch as well as an Engineer at GE prepared Michael for that moment, and the ongoing successes that follow.

This is one that you have to watch and share! Subscribe now!

Guest Details:

Name: Mike Pilliod
Title: Director, Tesla Glass
Company: Tesla

Mike Pilliod is a dad, husband and lover of great products and advanced materials. His background is in ceramic engineering and glass science and he has been so fortunate to work at GE, Apple, and Tesla. He is having a great ride on the glass wave and looks forward together with his team to future challenges and introducing new technologies.

Connect with Mike here: Linkedin