Nvidia’s Jensen Huang Says He Has ”Cleaned A Lot Of Toilets”, Elon Musk Responds

Jensen Huang, the CEO of Nvidia, has frequently shared his journey from humble beginnings to leading the world’s largest chipmaking company. Before co-founding Nvidia, Mr. Huang worked as a teenage busboy at Denny’s. It was in a booth at the same Denny’s where he once cleared tables, washed dishes, and cleaned toilets that he and his co-founders conceived the idea for Nvidia. Mr Huang believes those humble beginnings still shape the type of business leader he is today and feels that no task is beneath him. 

In March this year, Mr Huang gave an interview at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, where he talked about his experience working at the breakfast chain Denny’s. A video of the interview has resurfaced on the internet, prompting a response from Tesla CEO Elon Musk. 

”To me, no task is beneath me because, remember, I used to be a dishwasher. I used to clean toilets. I cleaned a lot of toilets. I’ve cleaned more toilets than all of you combined,” Mr Huang said. 

Absolutely the right attitude.

During the toilet paper shortages of Covid, I was making sure that our factories and offices had toilet paper!

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 30, 2024

In response, Mr. Musk said, “Absolutely the right attitude. During the toilet paper shortages in COVID, I was making sure that our factories and offices had toilet paper.”

In the interview, Mr. Huang also suggested that this work ethic has instilled in him a deep respect for all types of work and that he is ”not afraid to get his hands dirty.”

”If you send me something and you want my input on it and I can be of service to you — and, in my review of it, share with you how I reasoned through it — I’ve made a contribution to you,” Mr Huang added.

Last month, Nvidia became the world’s most valuable public company, riding on an artificial intelligence-driven surge. As a result, Mr Huang added over $4 billion to his net worth in a single day. He has now become the 11th richest person in the world, as per Forbes’s real-time billionaire list. 

The 61-year-old tech executive co-founded the computer chip company back in 1993 with Chris Malachosky and Curtis Priem. He has occupied the chair of Nvidia’s chief executive and president since its inception. The tech giant went public in 1999 and has surged in trading in recent years. 

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