Al GoreWhat do you do after you almost become president?

I guess the answer depends on who you are. Al Gore could have moped around or simply settled for a lucrative career as a public speaker, commanding up to $175,000 per speech and being considered the “ultimate Davos man.” Not bad, right?

Instead he did far more, according to a New York magazine article by Steve Fishman.

After the presidential campaign, he dusted himself off and turned his obsessions into businesses.

Gore’s commitment to the health of the planet and its citizens shines through the business enterprises he created.

Generation Investment Management, a moneymaking firm he created with a former Goldman Sachs exec in 2004, is devoted to  long-term, sustainable development. When analyzing investments, it considers factors like climate change. When analysts noticed BP’s refinery fire in Texas and pipeline fire in Alaska suggested a culture of safety was falling short, they stopped investing in BP.

According to his website, Gore spends most of his time on The Climate Reality Project, a non-profit devoted to solving the climate crisis.

After losing the presidency, Gore called the media a “dysfunctional oligopoly” that was “bad for democracy.” It probably didn’t help that the media had fixated on him as a “supercilious Ivy League egghead.” No real journalism was occurring, he claimed.

In response, he and an entrepreneur launched their own cable TV station, Current TV, which drew upon user-generated content and ads. They recently sold the cable channel in a $784 million deal, making Gore richer than Romney.

Granted, most of us don’t have the public stature of an almost president.  But all of us can choose to link work to our obsessions. That’s one way to ensure work will always be stimulating. Connect it to something you would think about anyway.

Source: “Al Gore’s Golden Years,” New York magazine