Act Like a Chief Energy Officer

I love the word Chief Energy Officer. Wish I could take credit for it.

It comes courtesy of the highly energizing Tony Schwartz, author of The Way We’re Working Isn’t Working: The Four Forgotten Needs That Energize Great Performance.

Each workplace has its own emotional climate. And each leader is a Chief Energy Officer who fuels that climate.

Let’s break this down into some energy habits, shall we?

If you’re fortunate, you work in a culture like Zappos where every aspect of the organizational design is intended to motivate its workforce. Free lunches. Freedom to decorate your meeting spaces. Free life-coaching.

The culture does a lot of the energizing for you.

Even if you’re not blessed to work in a Zappos culture, here are 4 habits that will help you be the inspirational Chief Energy Officer you long to be:

1.    Notes of Appreciation:  Show that you noticed. Saying it, especially when the saying reveals the specifics you observed, is terrific. But when you write it down, not in an email, no, in an old-school note-appreciation-card – wow, then it carries the weight and impact of a well-considered gesture.

Write 1 note of appreciation a week. It takes less than 5 minutes to do so. It will be an exhilarating energy catalyst.

2.    Happy Endings:  Have great meetings. Disagree vigorously. Challenge each other. And at the end, affirm the fire and spirit of the discourse that occurred. The Happy-Ending-Affirmation may come from you. Or invite all meeting participants to affirm each other.

No meeting ends without a vigorous affirmation of the positive that occurred.

3.    Passionate Curiosity:  Even when you’re sure of a course of action, even when you feel like you do not wish to be derailed by a tangential comment, stay curious. Yes. DON’T BE RIGHT, BE CURIOUS. Your curiosity will energize everyone around you.

Talk less, ask more. In every situation. Even when you think you have all the answers.

4.    Conscious Optimism:  While you’re caught in a crappy day, as you have grave doubts about a course of action, face your reality, in that moment. Face it – but refrain from unloading every detail of your anxiety on those around you. Speak your truth, but infuse it with optimism.

Consciously stated faith and optimism will energize those around you. It will energize you. Constant worrying will not. 

Have fun with the notion of being a daily Chief Energy Officer. It’s the best job title in the world!