Elizabeth Stephens is Senior Director Business Development, HMH, and an Energy Workforce Advisory Board Member. She recently shared her thoughts on women in oil and gas.
Energy Workforce: Why did you get involved in oil and gas?
Elizabeth Stephens: My neighbor was in the industry and spent months sharing the excitement he had building equipment to support the drilling sector. I was excited by the challenges and solutions the sector provides and wanted to be a part of providing energy solutions to the world.
EW: What are the major changes you’ve seen during your time in the industry?
ES: When I joined the industry in 2007, I can only remember a handful of executives being women. Now, we are more focused on investing in ourselves and supporting our peers, and being active in committees, boards and organizations increases our visibility. The investment in mentoring others and focusing on personal growth helps give light to our progress. The training and support for women in the industry is an important piece to continue the success we have earned.
EW: What do you think companies could do to retain female employees?
ES: As a former employee at DistributionNOW, I was a proud founding member of RAD (Retain, Attract, & Develop). We started the group internally to focus on the women in the organization. Flexibility was always at the forefront of feedback we received from our employees, female or male. Providing flexibility in schedule demonstrates to your employees that you understand work/life balance, respect their personal time and appreciate how hard they work for the organization.
EW: Do you have a mentor, and if so, how has mentorship helped you towards your career goals?
ES: Yes, I have had several mentors over the years. Having a mentor has been instrumental in my career growth. My mentors have helped me identify new skills and expertise to compliment the success I have realized over the years. I have great trust in the people who are guiding me, sharing lessons learned and helping me establish goals. These people have been both men and women who are honest and candid with me. The best part is celebrating wins with them. I love having these leaders in my corner!
EW: What advice would you give women thinking about a career in oil and gas?
ES: Come join us and contribute to this amazing sector.
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