Female Power in the O&G Industry
Schlumberger is a global provider of technology for reservoir characterisation, drilling, production, and processing to the oil and gas (O&G) industry. In the 90 years since it began the company has expanded its presence to more than 85 countries, employing about 100,000 people representing over 140 nationalities.
Operating in Malaysia since 1935, Schlumberger is no stranger to Malaysia’s O&G industry. The Malaysian branch of Schlumberger employs a workforce of over 3,200 people across eight offices and facilities in the country. Despite being in a male-dominated industry, the O&G giant takes pride in implementing gender-equal policies. Roughly 16.4 per cent of the Schlumberger workforce comprises women – double that of the industry worldwide. It is their goal to reach 25 per cent by year 2020.
The company’s advocacy of gender diversity can also be seen through the recent appointment of Phuah Shok Han, Transformation Manager, South and East Asia for Schlumberger. Prior to her current role, Phuah was the Operation Manager for Brunei, Malaysia, Philippines, and Indonesia. She graduated as a chemist in 2001 and joined Schlumberger as a field engineer in Jakarta, Indonesia, working her way up the ranks in various roles around world, including Indonesia, Venezuela, UAE and India.
Transition to home soil
In 2015, an opportunity came knocking, when Phuah was offered to return to Malaysia in 2015 with an operations management promotion. She embraced the chance wholeheartedly and embarked on a career journey on home soil for the first time.
Although excited to return, Phuah pointed out that just like any other transition, there had been challenges while settling in. Therefore, adaptability and optimism are crucial in ensuring a smooth transition into a new environment, especially as the O&G industry was undergoing a difficult period when she came home.
Three important personal attributes assisted Phuah to make the best out of the situation: career identity and the ability to excel in her chosen path; creating value to her current position; and the ability to step out of her comfort zone.
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