8 Pieces Of Advice From Women In Energy

Written by:

Katie Mehnert

We know energy shapes our world. But what will become more evident is exactly how companies impact climate change directly and put information in front of investors. As these businesses adhere to disclosing their risks, the more the pressure builds to find alternative solutions and bring in the Benjamins they want to see. With energy security at the forefront here in the US and abroad, a diverse energy platform has become especially important. Even renewable superhero Elon Musk agrees as he tweeted:

Women leading change in the energy industry share their tips for other professionals to bring inclusion and diversity to the forefront to make more impactful solutions.

8 Pieces Of Key Advice From Women In The Energy Industry

Progress and change only happen if leaders have followers. That’s why Paula Glover, President of the Alliance to Save Energy, discussed the future of energy with four other female executives. Each has different stories and experiences and strongly invests in the future of clean energy. Yet, their focus is less on the ‘why’ and centered around ‘how’ the industry should look to get there. 

Here’s their advice for every woman in energy.

Build Your Own Personal Board of Directors

It takes a village to raise a child.

In the same way, it takes a village to raise women in energy. Colleen Jansen, CMO of ChargePoint, interprets this “village” as a personal board of directors. Find people who will hold you accountable, have different skill sets, and are a few years ahead of you. Find them and engage with them for that accountability.

Diversity & Inclusion

We’ve heard it before, but there’s more to diversity and inclusion than adding more women and people of color. It’s about bringing together all different types of perspectives, groundbreaking ideas, and even opposing viewpoints to find the best solution for our future. Adding diversity into the workforce is essential. We must be open to utilizing the abilities and talents of others if we want to create a better tomorrow for the next generation. 

Strive To Make More Of A Positive Impact

Find a way to get back to the purpose of all that we do. Without energetic conversations and intentional actions, what do we have left? We will get results when we redefine our ‘why’ and infuse passion into our industry. There is a way to make money, use technology, and capitalize on passions about the challenges we face. From this, we can create something tangible for years to come.  

Believe In The Ability To Evolve

Just because we’ve worked or done something a certain way doesn’t mean we can’t shift for better results. The same is true on an individual level, pointed out by Janice Tran, CEO and Co-Founder of Kanin Energy. This means people of all professional experiences should feel confident stepping into decision-making roles. 

The energy industry's future isn’t limited to simply changing our processes. It’s about believing in the ability to evolve the entirety of the workplace over time. Now is the moment to stop talking about how change can benefit the industry. Instead, let’s look at how change can increase our chances of finding profitable, sustainable solutions.

Explore Every Market To Find Future Solutions

Creating clean energy means more than finding the fastest solution. It’s about thinking decades ahead and taking the time to understand beyond what we know. Explore every market, generate ideas outside of normal expectations, and talk about it. Quick solutions can be band-aids over time. We need to alter the perception of what working in energy means to create palpable results.

Keep The Conversation Going

Dr. Emily Reichert, CEO of Greentown Labs, says to ask questions, stay curious, and learn instead of relying on your ability to conceal what you don’t know. 

Women have picked up that being the uninformed person in the room isn’t beneficial in the workplace. However, it’s more constructive and profitable to use other people’s skills by asking for explanations. This means having the courage to raise a hand, ask for elaboration, or simply say, “I don’t know. Can you tell me more about that?” Chances are, you’re not alone in wondering, and everyone gains some sort of knowledge because you have the boldness to admit your weaknesses. But it doesn’t mean you are weak. It means you have the drive and prowess to grow in your talents and catapult your abilities into finding answers. Speak up and stand out, even if it makes you uncomfortable.

Candice Michalowicz, COO of EDPR NA Distributed Generation, emphasized how people she encounters underestimate her because she’s young and female. It would be easy for this to be a chip on her shoulder. Instead, she realized that being young and female is a strength. That’s her superpower.

Invest In The Minds Of Younger Generations

Taking this step requires more than focusing on the current workforce and investing in future professionals. This means addressing academics down to the elementary level to engage the next generation of energy visionaries for years to come. 

At ALLY, we’ve teamed up with children's book authors Erin Twamley and Joshua Sneideman to create Everyday Superheroes: Women in Energy Careers. We hope this book can serve as a resource to create excitement about STEM careers for elementary aged children.

Together, this requires more focus on STEM teaching, social media outreach, internships, and bringing in younger people the same way tech companies do. Let’s highlight Houston and its rich history of energy, oil, and gas entities. 

We are a thriving hub of energy companies that make daily decisions that affect people across the globe. So we must support the people inside the industry and include competitive salaries, inclusion, future solutions, and other opportunities directly to the next generation of professionals.

Breaking The Bias By Working On
Real Results

The expertise and knowledge of each individual are valuable. This means we can focus less on the idea of diversity and instead aim the attention on delivery. Talking about change isn’t enough to give us the solutions we need to increase our revenue and continue the path of revolutionizing the future energy workforce.

The bottom line?

Clean energy isn’t just about adding more women or women of color. It’s about us in the industry, together. Be a part of this change to drive impact while following your passion – either as a candidate or a company. Sign up today, and let’s get started.

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