Inspiring Women at the WEN Conference

Congratulations to the Women’s Energy Network for organizing and hosting an OUTSTANDING and INSPIRING conference last week in New Orleans! WOW! My colleague Conni Todd and I were invited to contribute to the conference by leading an interactive leadership development workshop: Extraordinary Female Leadership—Vision is the Difference.

We also had the privilege of moderating a panel discussion around personal branding and networking: When Your Name is Your Bond—Building and Maintaining Your Bond in the Energy Space and Beyond. What an engaged and motivated group of women with which to spend 3 days! Not only did we have the opportunity to lead 2 sessions, we were incredibly inspired by other fabulous speakers like Peggy Montana, CEO and President of Shell Midstream Partners, and Marilyn Tam, CEO, Marilyn Tam & Co. 

The conference offered women in the energy industry four “tracks” of workshops, including: Energy Policy and Strategy; Career Game Changers—Operational Expertise, 2015 Industry Outlook—Insights and Trends; Energy Leadership—from STEM to the C-Suite. We elected to attend the Energy Leadership track precisely because of our work and our passion for leadership development. Despite the diversity in tracks and speaker’s topics, the following themes consistently emerged:

  1. Vision is a differentiator and the skill most lacking in female leaders.
  2. Confidence is KING in a predominantly male industry like oil/gas/energy.
  3. Self-Awareness is one of the most important components of career success—feedback is a must!
  4. Women have skills and brain trust that when included on teams positively impacts company performance OR women outscore men on numerous leadership competencies.

What was overwhelmingly apparent was the incredible power of leveraging the collective experience and wisdom of a group of dynamic women across multiple industries and organizations. Best leadership practices and a sense of hope and validation were shared, and owning one’s femininity emerged as a competitive advantage to be embraced and celebrated!

We were thrilled to be able to further the leadership development of WEN conference participants not only at the conference but also moving the work forward into their businesses and workplaces by offering them a complimentary “Work of Leaders” assessment that will further their visioning, execution and alignment skills. We are looking forward to guiding them through their results in an upcoming webinar later this month.

We’d like to thank the amazing women of WEN, especially speaker committee chair, Emily Thomas, for giving us the opportunity to be a part of such an incredible forum for sharing and learning. We’d also like to congratulate Katie Mehnert, Founder and CEO of Pink Petro, on the recent launch of her business and website, “The business social channel for women in energy, where we unite, connect, develop and grow women.” We were surrounded by visionary female leaders at the conference and we look forward to following the incredible journeys and success of these women in the years to come!

“Leaders of the future will have to be visionary and be able to bring people in – real communicators. These are things women bring to leadership and executive positions, and it’s going to be incredibly valuable and incredibly in demand.”

Anita Borg