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The New Reality for the Canadian Petroleum Industry

It’s been a rough year for the oilpatch here in Canada. For every one of my contacts that have changed their LinkedIn headline to “seeking new opportunities”, I’m sure there’s another couple of dozen people who I don’t know doing the same. The story of how bad it is gets repeated the unemployment rate gets reported, every time the price of oil drops, every time another banker predicts record lows…

… and the impact is far reaching. This kind of news doesn’t just affect the citizens of Calgary but also countless smaller communities throughout Western Canada. The impact on both corporate profits as well as individual income (thousands without jobs, even more taking rollbacks in salary) are also having an impact on government budgeting.
But these downturns in the price of oil are a reality of the industry and the industry has been responding as it usually does... reduce overhead costs, via capital spending and payroll, and wait for the price to rebound. However, this downtown is looking especially nasty both in the depth it is dropping to as well the duration of this downturn.
You will have to be brave enough to admit your limitations. As a leader, many will be looking to you for ALL the answers. You know you don’t have them… but you have the capacity to find them. It is in the realization that you don’t have ALL the answers that you can start to ask for help from others.
There is a great opportunity for this industry to reinvent itself into a more efficient and more effective player in the economy. All it requires now is leaders who recognize that opportunity and brave enough to act on it.