We know how stressful it is to run a startup. Add in the additional pressure of people relying on your startup – it’s a lot of responsibility and it can be exhausting. That’s why, we’ve welcomed Sean Hall as Head of Founder Wellbeing to our team. We’re working on developing purpose driven leaders who will see it through and we know they need energy to do that. We believe this is a first for accelerator programs in Australia and we hope that others will follow.
Sean is a long time friend of Remarkable. DiversityX, Sean’s first startup, was part of Cohort 1. Since then Sean has gone on to launch Energx, a performance training and coaching company that enables people, leaders and organisations to excel in times of disruption and change.
We asked Sean to tell us more about himself and how he’s working with Cohort 3 throughout their 16 week’s with Remarkable.
Tell us a little bit about you and Energx
I’m on my fifth career (fitness, marketing, technology and HR have come before) and Energx is an eclectic mix of what I’ve learned along the way – the good, the bad, and the ugly. I’ve built two start ups and worked as employee #11 in another. On the corporate side I’ve been responsible for a $10B brand impacting 16 million customers and designed culture strategy for 40,000 people. I have five world firsts in bringing tech innovations to life. But perhaps most importantly, I learned why wellbeing is important the hard way by suffering burnout, or what I call an energy crisis, twice in three years.
While I was on the Remarkable Accelerator, I realised that one of the biggest barriers to social change is that people are simply too stressed and tired to provide significant help. This realisation led me to launch Energx. We created and teach a skill called energy intelligence designed to help people increase the quantity and quality of energy we have. We believe when we collectively have more in the tank will see social change progress faster.
What’s the Remarkable wellbeing program involve and what results are you hoping to see?
Mental health and burnout statistics for entrepreneurs are shockingly high coupled with a startup culture that seems to make heroes out of people doing ridiculous hours. Our focus is on prevention with my job to build the energy intelligence in the cohort so they are more aware of what is impacting their energy and therefore make better decisions.
Each of the cohort have completed our unique Energx ExIQ assessment which determines their current energy and helps them set new energy goals. I’ll help them get to their goals.
We kicked off the program with a group session last Friday which was designed around the aggregated data of the cohort. At the end of the session everyone had a plan to confidently get them to their goals. Throughout the program, each of the Founders will have 1:1 coaching sessions to keep them accountable and on track.
Each week we’re also asking them to set a ‘no fail’ goal that’s relevant to their wellbeing in the same way they do for their business. And finally we’ll assess everyone in 12 weeks time to track their progress and maintain their momentum. This is so everyone is at their most energised leading into the last weeks of the program and demo day.
Why is wellbeing important on an accelerator program?
Ultimately it is the quantity and quality of energy we have that determines our ability to be and feel successful. We literally cannot achieve what we don’t have energy for. Of course there are the obvious health benefits to a wellbeing program but what I’m really focusing on is the most important part of their bodies – their brains. Their ability to build their cognitive energy will be directly linked to their ability to create value.
All the skills that are required by the startups to achieve the impact they desire are super hard when we’re tired. You need energy for things like complex problem solving, decision making, creativity, building empathy, critical thinking, building relationships and just having fun.
What are your top five wellbeing tips to help the cohort?
1. Never lose sight of who and what really matters. Success is worthless if you’ve got no one to share it with. Failing and being alone is even worse. Always make sure your best energy is available to the people who matter most.
2. Fully utilise everything that the wellbeing stream of the program has to offer. Follow your personalised energy plan to enable you to be your energised best.
3. Make sleep and hydration a priority. Every day we wake up tired, we start behind. Drink enough water to optimise brain function. It really is the simple things sometimes.
4. Reframe your diary as energy vs time. Focus on activities which are energising and important, as these will be the ones that drive the most value, most quickly.
5. Make time to ‘shimmy’ every day – one of my favourite quotes is “life is too important to be taken seriously” after all if you can’t have fun doing it, what’s the point?!