How to Make an Impact as a CEO with Jason Salfi

The success of the company depends largely on how well its CEO creates a work environment that can drive innovation and productivity. Employees often look to the CEO for creating and maintaining the culture of their organization. So then, as a CEO, you have the power to make an impact. But how do you set your company on the right path? For episode 072 of my podcast, ‘The World Class Leaders Show’, I invited Jason Salfi. He is the Co-founder and CEO of Dimensional Energy, a revolutionary company that makes sustainable fuels and products from carbon dioxide and renewable energy. 

Jason’s Definition of Impact

I have asked many Leaders what their definition of Impact is, and everyone has a different version of it, and sometimes, unfortunately, because it’s being used so many times, it becomes a buzzword. So what is Jason’s version of impact? “Impact is a pretty agnostic word, it can be positive, or it can be negative, it’s all up to your intention.” The unintentional impact would be like companies that don’t pursue positive societal or environmental change, resulting in wealth aggregation. Intentional impact means having a positive effect on society and the environment from a regenerative approach — one that is durable and long-lasting.

From Founder to CEO

Founders need to shift their focus from building a great product to building a thriving and sustainable company. They must learn how to let go of the “baby” they created in order for it grow up into self-sustaining business And for Jason Salfi dealing with his transition from Founder to CEO, he said “it feels very natural” because of his great co-founders. They got things off the ground, a good equilibrium and balance between everybody on the technical and  business side. They were really strategic about how they brought people in, and making sure that they are a good fit for the culture they’re trying to build. And as they grow our biggest challenge is taking care of our mentality for the business.  “As the team grows, I want us to  remain human and kind to each other and have a really wonderful place to work. It’s just about having that intention that sets the tone for your success.”

Ways  To Protect Your Business Culture While You Grow

Business culture is the key factor in a company’s success or failure—it makes you unique, defines what your business stands for, and differentiates it from competitors.  Fortunately, there are things that you can do now while you build up your business to protect your culture as it expands.
  • Be Intentional 
“You have to build culture intentionally and not fall into default cultures.” Building a culture is the single most important thing that an organization can do in order to drive success. However, just building a culture without intention doesn’t always work. Building your company’s culture is essential for its success and to prevent conflict in the future.
  • Be Open to Criticism
Taking criticism can be difficult. It’s hard to hear someone tell you how they think you could do things better—nobody enjoys that experience. But it may not all be bad news: sometimes, if we’re willing to listen carefully and consider another person’s perspective, their critique can give us an edge in a competitive environment! “If you can build a great system, you will go through a lot of storms to become better”

Words for CEOs

The highest ranking employee in an organization—the chief executive officer (CEO)—is expected to lead the team and develop a vision for the future. However, that role can be isolating because it makes you responsible for everyone else’s performance as well as your own. So, if you are a CEO who feels alone , here are some encouraging words from Jason Salfi. “You’re not alone in the world. Accept things are going to be hard  and on the other side, there are maybe smoother sailing times ahead. Just always keep that sort of openness to nothing is permanent, and you will move forward through any situation if you stay grounded. Keep an open mind to the possibilities, and don’t confine yourself to a bad outcome just because of difficult situations. So, these are things we all go through as CEOs and people running big companies, but you can get through these things with intention and care.” To close the interview, I asked Jason to share with us his responses to my top guest questions.  Q: Is there anything that you would like to share that is working so well, for you that might be inspirational for others? Keep a beginner’s mind. Remember that baby steps count as well. Give yourself the space to recover and rejuvenate. Be open to mentorship. It is going to be a wildlife adventure, this is going to be fun, and it’s going to be hard, but that’s what life is. So  go for it.  Q: Is there anything in your career that you might have done differently? It’s a journey. I’ve learned some things,  and I’m thankful for my family for being so supportive. I was pushing a little bit too hard towards work in play, but not nurturing of a very young marriage at the time. I could have put more time towards the nurturing of an exciting love.  Q: Is there any specific book that you would like to recommend to the audience just because it changes your perspective, your life, or maybe your career?    It’s not about knowing everything and proving how much you know, it’s more about proving how much you can learn. So I’m reading “The Ministry for the Future” by Kim Stanley Robinson and “Parable of the Talents” by Octavia E. Butler.  For more information regarding Jason Salfi and his work, you can visit the company website http://www.dimensionalenergy.com/. You may also wish to reach out on Linkedin, at  https://www.linkedin.com/in/jasonsalfi/. If you’ve enjoyed this or other of my podcast episodes, please send me any comments via LinkedIn at linkedin.com/in/andreapetrone, or via email at [email protected]  For more information on my work and access to other valuable resources, please visit the website, at https://www.andreapetrone.com.    Listen to the podcast related to this article: https://www.andreapetrone.com/072: How to Make an Impact as a CEO with Jason Salfi/
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