Gratitude to oil & gas families

My Transition Year & Today’s Oil Folks

Written April 12, 2020

Today, a rather lengthy Facebook memory popped up today. In seeing it,  I’m taking pause. I appreciate so many blessings … current and past. This photo was taken in 2016. That’s a work over rig behind me.  Drilling rigs are much larger. This was taken during a transition year for me. Here, I was doing some management consulting work for a client. But, during this time I dabbled in politics and did some substitute teaching. Teaching won.

Why this is relevant

Many (oilfield) friends and former clients are having a tough go of things right now. (Others too … but, this note is in support of oilfield people). Thank you for considering these thoughts.

For “anti-oil” friends

For my friends that dislike (even viscerally disdain) all things oil & gas … okay, I disagree with you on this subject, but also do understand your perspective … please take pause a moment and consider how significant (in positive ways) the energy industry has contributed to your life … as well as tens of thousands of families each year for decades.

Many use the expression “big oil” to mean/convey/describe evil people that are greedy and don’t care about Earth … caring only about wealth … etc. I am sure that for some “oil people” that is an apt description. It is highly inaccurate regarding the industry, however. People (maybe even you) wrongly use that term “big oil” to describe all things oil & gas. That term has an actual meaning (Wikipedia is a good source for complete explanation). Most employees of the big oil entities do care about crucially important things that you care about. But also, lumping in everyone oil & gas together is errant.

More about the photo

Here … my client was SMALL oil & gas. Real people … moms, dads, young adults … really fine human beings worked hard, smart, and thoughtfully to mine oil and gas from this one spot … among many other similar locations.

One of my (consulting firm’s) clients specialized in protecting the soil around a drilling pad and minimizing the use of water … and also, dramatically reducing haul trucks needed to for that work.

This specific small client was started from scratch … four men part time … grew to include their spouses… then dozens more. It was (and is) America at its best … entrepreneurs risking personal wealth on an idea (a noble idea) to build a very viable business that has grown steady … great paychecks for employees, earth-friendly service, and love for community.

Let’s check ourselves

I get it that we have strong beliefs … and outrage is sometimes warranted. If you are sort-of (secretly, or not so secretly) “liking” the difficulties oil & gas is facing right now, please check yourself a little bit. I am no longer oil & gas … I teach. Still, I hold deep appreciation for what the industry has meant for me … and still does for so many.

Thank you.

To my friends in the industry … thank you.

To those who disagree with me … thank you for browsing this.

John