Find This Energy Company Its Newest Executive, Get A $100,000 Reward

Recruiters are getting ditched in favor of crowdsourced hires that double as good publicity.

Find This Energy Company Its Newest Executive, Get A $100,000 Reward
[Photo: Getty Images]

Know any high-level executives in the solar business? You could be in the running for a $100,000 reward. All you have to do is provide a name.


Energy company NRG is looking for a president for NRG Home, the company’s $6 billion business that includes its retail brands (NRG, Reliant, and Green Mountain Energy), residential solar brand (NRG Home Solar), and more.

The crowdsourced executive hunt is actually a smart move for NRG–it generates publicity, and $100,000 is less than the company would pay for an executive search firm to headhunt for the position, according to David Crane, president and CEO of NRG. “We wanted the number to be meaningful because of the importance of the search. At the same time, we are disciples of Peter Diamandis and the “X-prize” approach to galvanize action in order to achieve critically important outcomes in the shortest possible amount of time,” he writes in an email.

In March, advertised a similar headhunting approach: a $1,000 reward plus $1,000 to the charity of your choice for finding a new employee, even if you don’t work there. But that was a much smaller reward ( is also a much smaller company). NRG could be overwhelmed with names, both qualified and not.

“Since this is the first time anything like this has been done, we don’t know what kind of volume we’ll get, but we are prepared to sift through all the referrals that we receive. In the worst-case scenario, we don’t find anybody, but we generate some buzz about what we’re trying to do with NRG Home,” writes Crane.

The newly created role is ideal for someone who “has the passion and fortitude to instigate disruptive change in the retail electricity sector” and combines “entrepreneurial credentials as well as significant experience operating effectively within and around an established corporate environment,” according to a company press release.

Want to submit a candidate? Check out NRG’s site here. If you submit yourself and are chosen, you don’t get the $100,000 reward–but you do get to donate $100,000 to charity.

About the author

Ariel Schwartz is a Senior Editor at Co.Exist. She has contributed to SF Weekly, Popular Science, Inhabitat, Greenbiz, NBC Bay Area, GOOD Magazine and more.