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High-Performer Spotlight: Brandon Janda, GD Energy Products

Brandon Janda, Product Line Director, GD Energy Products, is a member of the Council’s Emerging Executives Committee. He recently shared her insights on the energy services and technology sector.

COUNCIL: What is your role with the company? What does a typical day look like?

Brandon Janda: I’m the Product Line Director for HDD and Oilfield Production Pumps. My responsibilities include managing our product portfolio, analyzing current and new market trends, identifying high potential industries and helping build our new product development path.

A typical day for me is always exciting. My focus is finding solutions for customers. In a single day, I could be talking about a new design with engineering, a custom solution with our sales team or future opportunities in a new market.

COUNCIL: Why did you join the oil and gas industry? Was there an individual who influenced your decision? Was there an event or piece of technology that got you excited?

BJ: I initially joined the oil and gas industry because it was what I knew best growing up. My father worked at Texaco in Houston for 37 years, and I remember spending my sick days from school hanging out in his office. It was always a part of my life. He was ultimately the biggest influence for me wanting to be in the industry. As a kid, I was fascinated by the ability to locate and drill for fossil fuels. To this day, I’m still amazed at the advancements in technology that have been made.

COUNCIL: What individual has been most instrumental in helping with your career? What did their mentorship look like and how did it guide your path?

BJ: My first boss out of college was by far the most instrumental in helping me with my career. He instilled in me the confidence to always be myself and not be afraid to build my own path. His mentorship guided me in making decisions that helped expose my strengths. We have been friends for 20 years now, and I still reach out for advice.

COUNCIL: What was your impression of the industry beforehand and how has it evolved?

BJ: When I started, I always thought the industry was slow to train new talent and relied heavily on existing experience. It’s refreshing to see that today we are far from that. We are training new talent and you see it in the advancements we are making. We are in good hands for the future.

COUNCIL: What has surprised you most about the industry? 

BJ: The support that we give each other. Through the ups and downs of the market, people are always there to help. The friends I have made are some of the best people you could ask for.  

COUNCIL: Where do you hope to see the industry develop over the next five years?

BJ: I want to see the industry continue to grow and build new talent. I believe we will make huge technological advancements in the next five years.

COUNCIL: What role do you believe you will play in the industry’s future? 

BJ: I’d like to continue bridging technologies between the oil and gas industry and other industries. I believe our products can have a huge impact in the industrial market.

COUNCIL: How has your involvement in the Council supported your career goals? 

BJ: Being involved in the Council allows me to work closer with my peers. We are able to share ideas and help direct the future of our industry. 

COUNCIL: Who are one or two individuals you’ve met while working in the industry who have impacted your thinking?

BJ: I recently listened to Pearl Chu from Schlumberger speak at our leadership forum, and it was very insightful. I believe to be good leaders we have to learn to help individuals grow and promote positivity. It was refreshing to listen to her career experiences and how both positive and negative feedback matter. Learning the ideal ratio for positive to negative feedback is 5.6 to 1 was surprising. It definitely made me realize I need to focus more on the positive than the negative.

COUNCIL: What’s a technology or innovation you’ve seen in the energy services and technology sector that impressed you?

BJ: I’m always impressed with the new safety equipment. There are many examples I could point out, but it’s the innovations that removed the need for heavy tools in day-to-day work. I know at our company we continue to develop hammerless solutions like our SafeLock Valve Cover. It’s important to continue to make our industry safe. 

COUNCIL: What advice would you give someone just getting started in the oil and gas industry?

BJ: Be confident in what you do, take all the advice you can and get involved. The Energy Workforce and Technology Council is a perfect start!

COUNCIL: What do you wish other people knew about oil and gas?

BJ: The people that work in this industry are passionate about what they do, and they truly care about the future. We are innovators.

COUNCIL: What do you do for fun?

BJ: I enjoy woodworking, grilling and the occasional 150-mile bike ride.

COUNCIL: What’s a fun fact that people would never guess about you?

BJ: I love to play the guitar and have been doing it for over 20 years but not many people know it.

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