Petroleum is a rewarding industry in which to hatch your career as a recent graduate.
With many senior oil and gas professionals poised to retire and exit the workforce, Canada’s oil and gas sector is eagerly scouting new employees to take the reins.
This presents a unique opportunity for recent graduates and young professionals interested in hatching their oil and gas careers – a rewarding industry with huge growth potential and demand for a new wave of talent.
However, getting ahead can be challenging and competitive.
While there may not be a fail-safe recipe for success just yet, here are a few tips that are sure to bring you long-term success during your oil and gas career.
1) Make connections (as appropriate)
A common mistake made by many young and ambitious professionals is working too hard to please the corporate hot-shots and senior-level staff.
While you should certainly endeavour to impress your boss and superiors, remember your position.
Junior staff often forget to build relationships with the support staff and operators in the field – the people who work alongside you.
Courtesy and treating everyone equally isn’t simply a tip to a healthy and happy life: it’s also an important tool for career advancement. Making connections that suit your role is an organic way to begin building a professional network and reputation in your field.
If you focus solely on personal gain, you won’t make a good team member – and that problem gets around fast.
2) Understand field work
Whether you’re a junior engineer or on the corporate side, there is no experience more crucial to your success than getting on the ground and in the field.
If there’s any area in the industry that can be plagued by dispute, it is between those on the ground and those that work at arms-length away from the field.
Taking the time to get a sense of what happens on the ground is not only beneficial to the work you collectively accomplish, it also proves invaluable to your own personal development. Getting away from the drawing board and seeing for yourself how operations translate in practice gives you an incredible edge.
You’ll sound and be more competent, you’ll earn respect and get along better with your team – and you’ll begin to piece together the “big picture” of how the industry functions, from the bottom-up.
3) Find a mentor
Mentorship can unlock career success in virtually any field – accelerating your career progress in more ways than one.
A great mentor in the petroleum field offers you real-world training and experience to complement your knowledge base.
Competence breeds confidence, with personal mentor-training offering you the best in the technical know-how that leads to success.
A very tangible and equally important reason to finding a mentor in oil and gas is a reference. Developing a strong professional mentor-mentee relationship brings with it a wealth of opportunity for the future. With an industry that pays great attention to a proven track record in the field, a reference is effectively your ticket to laying down the foundations for your successful career in oil and gas.
Career advice is another long-term advantage offered by having a mentor.
In an industry that is so multi-faceted and complex, it’s all too easy to feel overwhelmed and miss the big picture – which is precisely why mentors are an invaluable resource.