In celebration of international women’s day, the African Energy Chamber interviewed Adeola Adeniyi about her career goals, networking habits, and the role of female leaders in the energy sector. Adeola offers valuable insights into what it takes to be successful in this field. When asked about her career aspirations, Adeola stated that she hopes to become a senior executive in an oil and gas company someday. She also believes that strong networking connections are key to success, and she has made it a point to attend many industry networking events. She’s a geoscientist for a national oil company in Nigeria and holds two master’s degrees–one in Applied Geophysics & another one in Petroleum Engineering where she was the only graduating female student in her cohort and graduated top of her class. Adeola also volunteers within diversity initiatives for the Society of Petroleum Engineers and advocates for women and other marginalized groups’ inclusion in Energy.
Despite being a critical part of the energy industry, women are often underrepresented in leadership positions. Why is there a need for more women in leadership roles?
Women are critical to the energy sector and having more women occupying leadership roles in this sector can’t be overemphasized. This is important because women need to be more represented. For the young women coming up, it is essential that they have women leaders they can look up to. Also, women leaders are transformational and having more women in leadership roles will transform the energy sector greatly. Finally, women leaders often bring a less authoritative and more cooperative spirit to teamwork. As women, we also tend to consider a lot of factors when facing challenges and making decisions, so we bring a fresh perspective to our leadership roles.
Women’s networking groups are a great way to connect with others in the oil and gas industry, learn more about the industry, and build relationships that can lead to future opportunities. Are you part of any women’s networks or groups? and what part has networking played in your career growth and success
Yes, I currently volunteer as the event lead for the Diversity and Inclusion arm of the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE), Benin-City Section, Nigeria. The Diversity and inclusion arm of SPE used to be called Women in Energy, but it was rebranded to capture the other diversities we have in the energy world. Being a part of this network has helped me hone my leadership, networking, communication and planning skills. It has also helped me to embrace the different diversities in the industry and have a collaborative spirit. These skills I have developed have helped me work better with people and deliver my best to any team I am on.
Despite being a vital part of the economy, the oil and gas industry is not particularly appealing to women. In fact, women only account for a small percentage of the workforce. In your opinion, what is the most appealing part of working in the oil and gas sector?
Two things rank the same on my list. One is that you can infuse technology in any part of the oil and gas work chain. Whether you are in the downstream, midstream or upstream, there are always opportunities to improve your tech skills and solve problems. There are lots of training and development opportunities. The other appealing part of working in the industry is that it creates opportunities for research and development, develops businesses, sustains infrastructures, and provides ample opportunities for personal development.
With her experience in the oil and gas industry, Adeola provides some great advice for women looking to enter the energy field. She has a clear understanding of the challenges and opportunities that come with working in this field, and she is passionate about helping other women and marginalized groups achieve their goals. We look forward to seeing more women achieve success in the energy industry. If you’re interested in learning more about female leaders in the energy sector, be sure to check out our website for upcoming interviews and articles.