Charlie, a retired engineer, is Humanergy’s on-call handyman. And he is so much more than that. Charlie can fix anything. Even more impressive than his multitude of abilities is his total commitment to our organization. From day one, Charlie has taken ownership for our physical spaces and our organization’s people.

Charlie doesn’t wait for us to generate a list of to-dos. If he sees something that needs addressing, he takes care of it. He anticipates problems and points out opportunities for more effective use of our resources, such as ways for us to be more energy efficient.

One weekend, an employee dropped by the office with her husband to retrieve her glasses. Charlie happened to be driving by, noticed an unfamiliar car in the lot, and drove in to investigate who was on the property. His commitment to his job isn’t constrained by the day of the week or the nature of the task.

Charlie also nurtures Humanergy’s people. It isn’t unusual to come in to find that Charlie has left us a basket of tomatoes from his garden or candy on Valentine’s Day. When one team member’s child came down with the flu, Charlie delivered a care package of treats to her home.

What can we all learn from Charlie?

Commit. Charlie has committed himself 100% to the organization and its success. While he is not here every day, and isn’t even an employee, he takes ownership for Humanergy’s mission.

Do it because you love it. Charlie has a passion for what he does and who he does it for. He’s here because he cares, not because he needs the work or the money. (As you can imagine, Charlie is in high demand – everyone wants him as their go-to guy.)

Pitch in. Whether it’s in your job description doesn’t matter. Be the person who’s willing to do what it takes.

Make it personal. Share some of your private life and connect with others on a personal level. Remember birthdays, offer support during trying times and never forget that coworkers are people too.

Be yourself. One of Charlie’s best attributes is his authenticity. He is a “what-you-see-is-what-you-get” guy, and there’s a direct relationship between his values and his actions.

How can you help others find their “inner Charlie?” If you’re a leader, model Charlie’s attributes. After all, if you don’t take ownership, others surely will not. Allow people enough latitude in their work to make decisions and apply their skills to the fullest. Feed their strengths and encourage their individuality. Help them connect the dots between their future and the organization’s. You’ll be rewarded with a more creative, self-sufficient and dynamic team and a lot more enjoyment at work.

Every organization needs at least one Charlie. (Sorry, you can’t have ours. We don’t give out his name or his phone number!)

Have a question or want some input from Humanergy about this topic? Contact us and we’ll get right back to you!