Let’s be clear, the oil and gas industry is experiencing quite a bit of turbulence at the moment. Personnel are working on multiple tasks at the same time and there’s a huge degree of uncertainty around what’s over the horizon.
Knowing you’re working on the right thing at the right time has become a whole lot harder. It’s becoming increasingly evident that many people are forgetting the basics that can help them to make sense of business complexity.
Brass tacks, core essentials, hard facts, fundamentals, nuts and bolts, principles – call it what you will, there’s a strong argument in favour of concentrating on simple, important ideas and activities in order to navigate your way effectively in the current climate.
When times are good, it is easier to get by without focusing on the basics but, when times are tough, it is essential to evaluate those things that made us successful and begin implementing those strategies once again.
The first step is to figure out what the important decisions are that you need to take. This might sound blindingly obvious but only once you have stripped away the layers of complexity can you start to see the way forward.
Once that’s clarified, you should map out the order in which you need to make the important decisions – and understand what choices you really have.
Consider what you value, this will help you weed out the choices that are probably distractions.
Finally, work out what you need to do to distinguish between your important choices and get going, focusing on the early decisions.
Sound too simple? These things are called basic for a reason and are just as applicable across all major decisions at work and in life. A couple of months ago we used this to help a state wealth fund decide what to do and this morning it helped one of our new graduates figure out whether or not it was a good time to buy a flat in Aberdeen.
While the industry continues to look towards an uncertain future, the approach can also be used to help bring some clarity to the difficult choices facing many at the moment.