Building Hydrocarbon Bonds

David Vaucher writes about creating bonds within and outside of the energy business.
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Openness, honesty needed from the oil & gas industry to address climate change

I love working in this industry: the people are great and I really like working with and around all the technology it implements. That said, I do care about the environment, so I hope the industry will join me in furthering efforts to produce energy in a safe, ethical, and environmentally conscious way.  More »
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Continuing career development: here’s what I’m reading

There is lots out there already on the web, but the downside is that it is difficult to put all of this information into one, cohesive whole on a particular topic. Furthermore, when you do find something particularly interesting, the nature of the article format means that there are limits to how deep a piece can go: you’re hooked from the first sentence, and just as it starts getting good, the article ends!  More »
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Oil & gas industry standards could be beneficial, but obstacles abound

Standards sound great, but I see obstacles to their adoption. I’ll outline those this week, and, since no one likes people who complain about problems but never offer any solutions, I’ll share some thoughts on how to overcome these issues.  More »
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Commentary: Career growth means embracing change

In the year and a half I have been doing this column, I have dispensed A LOT of career advice both in my weekly pieces as well as personal emails with readers, so securing this newest opportunity was enlightening: I was on the “other” side!  More »
Baker Hughes painted 1,000 drill bits pink to raise awareness about breast cancer. (Rhiannon Meyers/Houston Chronicle)

Supporting the fight against breast cancer: good. Pink drill bits: not so much…

I fully support any effort to cure any kind of cancer, and it certainly seems the people behind the campaign were well-meaning and sincere when they decided to go ahead with the idea (the mother of one of those involved died of the disease), but set against the oil & gas industry’s ongoing efforts to attract more women, it’s my opinion that the campaign could unintentionally be more divisive than uniting.  More »
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Here’s one oil & gas industry outreach program you should definitely stand behind

The message is so important, and the company pushing that message is so appropriate, that I can’t help but be really, really enthused about this latest outreach effort from one particular and very significant player in the oil & gas industry.  More »
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Commentary: What does it take to call yourself a “professional”?

Being a professional isn’t then just receiving payment in exchange for a service. It represents a state of “being”, a code you set for yourself that encompasses not only expertise in your chosen field, but also striving for to meet the highest standards of moral behavior and personal conduct.  More »
Photo courtesy of "The Way Ahead" magazine

Here’s “The Way Ahead” for your oil & gas career

I was just starting out my career at the time, and it was truly as if everything I was thinking at the time was captured exactly in the pages of that first issue I received.  More »
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Want to improve your business acumen? Take some tips from Gordon Ramsay

Believe it or not, you can learn a lot from reality television.  More »
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Job negotiations: If you feel you’re getting a raw deal, you probably are

One of the best parts about writing this column has been hearing from readers around the world, and this week I’ll share one such exchange to illustrate how a “good” negotiation should go.  More »
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The oil & gas industry, enabler of new experiences and new friendships

Today I want to write about a fun experience I had, further proof that the oil & gas industry is a great enterprise through which people can come together, while learning and trying new things.  More »
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Commentary: Mark Wahlberg and Deepwater Horizon? I’m skeptical but cautiously optimistic

I’ve written in the past about my skepticism when it comes to Hollywood depicting the oil & gas industry, and unfortunately I don’t see much reason or incentive for this film to take a different course.  More »
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How is your “professional hygiene” routine?

Just as you wouldn’t go to bed without brushing your teeth (right?…) here are a few good habits you should work into your regular routine, daily, then weekly, monthly and yearly.  More »
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Protecting the term “engineer”, part 2

The piece I wrote last week on doing more to protect the title of “engineer” drew a really heated response, so much so that I thought the matter merited a follow up post with some clarifications.  More »
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For the sake of the profession, let’s do more to protect the term “engineer”

I’m on vacation this week, and so far I’m enjoying not doing anything much other than staring at the beautiful view out of my window, and taking long walks in the countryside. Once I touch down back in Houston, I’m back to work, and back to the process of studying for the Professional Engineer (PE) […]  More »
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