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Editor's note: Women have made great strides in engineering and the oil and gas industry, achieving success at the executive level and by pursing a career along the technical ladder. But often overlooked are the women succeeding in energy-related academia, providing the backbone research and testing that make many industry innovations and breakthroughs possible. JPT asked Tatyana Plaksina, associate professor at University of Calgary, to query some of her peers about their careers and their important role in supporting the world's energy industry. She obtained her doctorate in petroleum and natural gas engineering from Middle East Technical University, Ankara. She obtained her doctorate in petroleum engineering from the University of Texas at Austin. She obtained her doctorate in petroleum engineering from the University of Texas at Austin. She obtained her doctorate in petroleum and natural gas engineering from Pennsylvania State University. She obtained her doctorate from the University of Bristol in Bristol, England. She obtained her doctorate in petroleum systems engineering from the University of Regina.
Soft Skills Finding common ground in technical and managerial careers. Daily we find ourselves at a crossroads because we have to make decisions. Although it is true that some of these decisions can affect or influence our future career paths, the outcomes are not irrevocable. In other words, a single "good" career pick made today does not necessarily predetermine a successful career in the future. Technical and managerial career paths are not mutually exclusive. On the extreme ends of the job spectrum in the oil and gas industry there are unique talents like pure research or general manager. However, for the 80 or 90% of technical management roles in between, there is significant common ground with respect to the journey, accomplishments, recognition, and relative success. All kinds of research are available that promote particular career paths. Numerous publications offer in-depth academic studies of industry employment trends, statistical compensation analyses, updates on the state of engineering and science graduates around the globe, the significance of personality profiling, the potential relevance of birth order, the differences in generations (baby boomers vs. millennials), the value of diversity and inclusion, the effectiveness of mentoring programs, and even attempts to plot career roadmaps Feng Shui-style. These types of studies do offer insight and encouragement as well as being catalysts for self-introspection, awareness, and observation. They often provide a framework or structure that so many of us need or believe we need to organize, plan, and control our lives. They do their best to: explain "why" people act the way they do, delineate "who" might have natural abilities or aptitudes, and ultimately attempt to predict future behaviors. However, I do not believe that any one of them present a magic bullet, right answer, or single path to success.
As I took on roles of greater president of finance.
An eye-opening view into the mind of the energy industry young professional (YP), this paper draws from multiple global surveys of the SPE Young Professionals Coordinating Committee to provide insight into motivating factors, views of professional development, drivers for engagement in professional society activities, and influences behind choices to author and present technical papers. The surveys, authored and analyzed by young professionals, capture the opinions of a significant pool of YPs from around the globe. The surveys delve into many facets of what motivates, inspires, interests, and compels YPs and discusses their emergent career choices and aspirations. YPs share their concerns related to taking the helm of the industry as a significant proportion of industry leadership prepares to retire. Challenges related to absorbing hard-won expertise and experiences at an accelerated rate are discussed. Attraction and retention issues are addressed and challenges related to acquiring management approval to attend events and take leadership roles in the Society of Petroleum Engineers are investigated. Through the surveys, YPs share their views of the conference of the future, detailing the types of events that attract them. Opportunities to better engage and develop this contingent of the industry through novel initiatives and programs are presented.