The Birth of Pink Petro

Written by:

Katie Mehnert

Welcome to Pink Petro.

Six months ago it was just an idea. Today, it's a community built by industry and for industry, and a community like no other. I thank our industry founders for their support, Halliburton and Shell, and our friends at Jive Software and Social Edge for believing in our vision and making it happen, faster than the speed of social!

So, people ask all of the time. How did you birth Pink Petro?

The rumors are true. Pink Petro was conceived on a cocktail napkin on a 777 between London and Houston in 2013.

To add a little glamour to the story, it was a cocktail napkin on board a Dreamliner flight. which was grounded on the London Heathrow tarmac (for 20 hours, to be exact). And there’s nothing glamorous about international business travel, especially when people are constantly asking if you’re accompanying your husband on his business trip. With no personal devices allowed, I sat quiet for a while, and did some game-changing, life-altering, wine-induced thinking.

A little background

As a child of both the 1980s and an engineer, I was acutely aware of the devastating impact the bust of the oil industry had on my family and our community in New Orleans.  Aside from the fact that I had to re-take Algebra in high school and despised math, this early childhood experience discouraged me from pursuing a technical career. Instead, I took the least technical route there was, and graduated in Communications. So I'd like to think I've earned my stripes as a 'People Engineer'.

My strong desire to learn this business was paired with a relentless focus on building a path in an industry I had no formal education or experience in. This took me through some interesting assignments at Enron, Duke Energy, Waste Management, Entergy, Shell and BP. I have seen a wide part of the value chain and travelled the globe to offices and facilities worldwide working in technology, supply chain, projects, operations and ultimately landed in the best part of the business: health and safety.  I also experienced the bumps and bruises they've all faced: bankruptcy, fraud, insider trading, explosions, and oil spills. My career mantra became "Why Waste a Good Crisis?"

Creating my own 'room'

Yet, with every organization, I noticed a recurring theme: a big contributor to my success was being in the right room at the right time with the right resources. I have been blessed with advocates, both male and female, who taught, pushed, and positioned me for success. Building a village of people and experiences has been a long road. And, I've had my own personal bruises and disappointing moments, but they've shaped me to birth this community.

Pink Petro is the solution to bring that room, with the right people and the right resources, together, for success.  We have three basic rules: no solicitation, no recruitment, and be yourself.  There are other social channels that provide what we don't, but we're not looking to be like anyone else.  We want to create what Pink Petro is with you.

Thanks for joining me, our supporters and other members on this journey.  I look forward to uniting, connecting, developing and growing with you.

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