NRG Energy, the biggest independent power producer in the U.S., is undergoing a transformation.
Last week, the company announced it is splitting up its assets into three separate entities: NRG Business, NRG Home and NRG Renew. NRG Business will encompass the power producer's conventional generation portfolio in the wholesale markets. NRG Renew will include all of its utility-scale renewable energy projects. And NRG Home will manage the retail business, including rooftop solar installation, home energy management and electric vehicle charging.
As part of that restructuring, the company is doing something very unconventional: crowdsourcing ideas for a new executive.
No, David Crane is not leaving his post as CEO. Rather, NRG is looking for someone to run its $6 billion home energy business.
"NRG Home -- combining NRG’s robust conventional retail electricity platform with our emerging residential solar business and other home energy products, services and controls -- is going to be, from the outset, a uniquely capable company set up to pursue a greater purpose that is uniquely important to our collective future,” said Crane in a statement.
The company is offering $100,000 for the winning referral. According to NRG, it's the first crowdsourced executive job search.
NRG's planned transition goes far beyond simply splitting up business units. Although the power producer is still very heavily invested in fossil fuels, Crane recently laid out his vision for becoming the Apple or Google of the electricity industry by better connecting consumers "with their own energy-generating potential."
"There is the post-grid future -- a future that is driven by renewables, incorporating both energy storage and sophisticated localized automation to balance production and load," wrote Crane in a letter to investors in March.
That same week, NRG announced its acquisition of Roof Diagnostics Solar, the eighth-largest solar installer in the country. It has also set up partnerships with smart-thermostat maker Nest, planned new microgrid projects, and has started experimenting with solar PV tied with battery storage systems.
The new president of NRG Home will be responsible for growing those offerings into a "disruptive movement."
"We have witnessed disruptions in multiple industries over the past 30 years -- telecom, information technology, and cable and entertainment to name a few -- and we are looking for the leader who can harness the power of disruptive technology and apply it to NRG Home for the benefit of our customers and the greater good of society," wrote the company in the job description.
Along with having a passion for disrupting the status quo and addressing climate change, the candidate would ideally have both an entrepreneurial background and experience within a large company.
Got any good ideas? Share them in the comments section below. You can also submit one idea to NRG by August 22 for a chance to win $100,000.