By Shep Hyken
“There are two kinds of people: Batteries Included and Batteries Not Included.”
That quote comes from Dan Sullivan, founder and president of the Strategic Coach program. If you’ve been following my work, you’ll probably recognize his name. I’ve learned a lot over the years by attending his workshops and coaching sessions. He recently released a book that included many of his quotable words of wisdom. This one—about Batteries Included or Batteries Not Included—resonated with me. If it doesn’t already resonate with you, I bet it will in just a moment.
I have what appears to be an endless amount of energy. Yes, I sleep, but I like to get up and go. People have often compared me to the Energizer Bunny, as I just seem to go and go and go. There’s no doubt I’m a “Batteries Included” kind of guy, and I like spending time with others who come with Batteries Included. Words and phrases I would use to describe this type of person include self-starters, willing to take charge, doers, motivated, up for a challenge, willing to step outside their comfort zone and more. You get the idea.
Then there are Batteries Not Included kind of people. Words and phrases to describe that type of person include negative, pessimistic, little initiative, complainers and energy vampires. That last one is ugly. The old phrase, “They can suck the energy out of the room,” comes to mind here.
Who would you rather be around or work with? (That’s a rhetorical question.) What type of person gets regular or accelerated promotions? What type gets more sales? I could ask a host of similar questions, but it doesn’t take long before you realize that a Batteries Included personality is a good thing, especially in the working world.
Here’s something important to remember. You don’t have to be the Energizer Bunny, full of life and energy, to be thought of as Batteries Included. You don’t have to have an outgoing, gregarious, life-of-the-party personality. What you do need is a certain type of energy—the type that adds to whatever is happening instead of taking away from it. You must, at minimum, have a joy for what you do, a desire to make things better, a willingness to be open-minded and—this one’s big—the mindset of a contributor.
That’s what Batteries Included people do. They contribute. They add. Batteries Not Included people detract and take away. Ask yourself which category you fall into. If your batteries aren’t already included, find ways to inject that energy into everything you do. You can start small. I guarantee it will make a world of difference for both you and the people you do business with.