Taking on a leadership function in the energy sector

Peter Bogin Spencer Stuart and the Council on Business & Societyby Peter Bogin of Spencer Stuart

The challenges and opportunities

  • Finding people whose leadership talent is equal to their technical talent.
  • The dearth of good talent at the intersection of leadership and technical/execution skills is a significant challenge for companies and an opportunity for those who excel at each.
  • Diversity: The energy sector compares poorly with other industries in its promotion of females and non-Caucasian males.
  • The sector’s ability to compete for talent: the industry has not always excelled in portraying itself as an attractive career.
  • Some form of cooperation between the different branches of energy is required to highlight the attractiveness of and the opportunities in energy.
  • A major change in the industry is the growing role Private Equity has in the formation of companies and in the selection of leaders. PE firms have a preference for executives, whatever the position, to have a firm grip on financial performance and metrics, and an understanding of the economic drivers.
  • Some executives/consultants struggle with the move from large organizations with large support structures, to those where they are doing much more of the tasks previously delegated to assistants and back offices.

Success ladderReady for the move? Make yourself a better candidate

  • Think broadly: be familiar with all parts of the energy value chain.
  • Think ahead: the industry will be different in 10 years. How are you preparing for this?
  • Be a better leader. Are you motivating your people? Do they want to come to work in the morning and perform? Do they feel a stake in the company’s success? Do they see themselves as cogs in a wheel or as an essential component of the organization’s success?
  • Ensure that people will be rewarded when success is achieved.
  • At the more senior level, is your succession a priority? Are you building talent, creating a bench? Do you hold your direct reports accountable for creating their succession, their bench strength?
  • How do you answer the question, “What have you done to make your current company a better place than when you arrived?”

About Spencer Stuart

Founded in 1956 and privately owned, Spencer Stuart is one of the world’s leading executive search consulting firms, often cited as the adviser of choice for organizations seeking guidance and counsel on senior leadership needs. Spencer Stuart works across a range of industries, from the world’s largest companies to medium-sized businesses, entrepreneurial startups and non-profit organizations.  Peter Bogin’s specific practice – Global Energy – works with clients with a vested interest in energy such as financial institutions, large industrial concerns and the oil, gas and utilities industries.

Spencer Stuart career support and opportunities

  • Focus on executive search, board search, and executive and board assessment;
  • Largest privately held search firm. Over 50 offices in over 25 countries. Next year we will celebrate 60th anniversary.
  • The firm is matrixed into functional and sectorial expertise.  Industry sectors include Energy and Industry but also Consumer, Media, Technology, Life Sciences, Real Estate, and so forth. Functions include finance, marketing, legal, human resources,
  • The typical Spencer Stuart candidate has +15 years of job experience.
  • Spencer Stuart is closely associated with C-Suite search, CEO, CFO, CMO, CLO, CIO, CHRO and so forth.
  • Spencer Stuart also recruits, particularly in the energy space, senior technical talent so as Large Project managers, Refinery managers, Chief Reservoir Managers, Heads of Exploration, Operations, etc.

The Council on Business & Society Global Alliance is an ongoing international dialogue between six of the world’s leading business schools and an organiser of Forums focusing on issues at the crossroads of business and society – The Council Community helps bring together business leaders, academics, students and journalists from around the world. #CouncilonBusinessandSociety

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