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# RiverRipper's Guide to Energy

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Manager
Joined: 06 Jan 2010
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Concentration: Finance &amp; Strategy
Schools:Tuck, Ross, Sloan, Chicago, Kellogg &amp; Darden
Q47  V40
WE 1: Energy (Sales)
WE 2: Energy (Corporate Development)
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
OK, this is probably going to sound like an odd question, but what are some of the exit opportunities in oil & gas? Suppose I start working for them, but it doesn't turn out the way I thought it would, where could I go from there? Are the exit opportunities limited? The reason I'm asking is because the supermajors tend to hire for life, and for someone who's a little afraid of commitment like me, that leaves me gasping for air a little. Thank you.
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
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milias wrote:
OK, this is probably going to sound like an odd question, but what are some of the exit opportunities in oil & gas? Suppose I start working for them, but it doesn't turn out the way I thought it would, where could I go from there?

This was part of the reason I did not go back after an internship. My mentor for the summer basically told me that the exit opportunities for O&G for most positions is limited to other oil companies or industry companies. He also described the golden handcuffs as you advance, you get stock grants that vest over a long time and its often generous so its usually really difficult to walk away from that pile of cash. Almost everyone I met at the supermajor I worked for was a career person.

You could do an internship and see if you like it but realize that if you join up you probably will spend a lot of your life there unless you leave quickly. (less than 3 years). Its a great industry in a lot of ways: good work life balance, high pay, international opportunities, etc...but there are definite drawbacks. Spending 3 months there might make you love it or leave it.
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
riverripper wrote:
This was part of the reason I did not go back after an internship. My mentor for the summer basically told me that the exit opportunities for O&G for most positions is limited to other oil companies or industry companies. He also described the golden handcuffs as you advance, you get stock grants that vest over a long time and its often generous so its usually really difficult to walk away from that pile of cash. Almost everyone I met at the supermajor I worked for was a career person.

You could do an internship and see if you like it but realize that if you join up you probably will spend a lot of your life there unless you leave quickly. (less than 3 years). Its a great industry in a lot of ways: good work life balance, high pay, international opportunities, etc...but there are definite drawbacks. Spending 3 months there might make you love it or leave it.

Yea, that's what I was afraid of. There just doesn't seem to be that many exit opportunities for oil & gas. I think I'm OK with doing an internship to evaluate the career choice, but I'm also concerned whether that's going to affect my chances for full-time employment next year should I choose to go into another industry.

In any case, I guess it's a little too premature to think about it until I actually get an internship offer.
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
I ended up completely away from not only oil but also energy. I went into a manufacturing company on a GM track. I dont think internships will shut you out of an industry, its how you frame your experience over the summer. A few of my friends ended up in the oil industry and are enjoying it thus far. It really depends on the person and what you want to actually do for a living in terms of function not just industry.
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
Interviewed with Chevron and Exxon last week for an internship. Still waiting to hear back. The wait is killing me. Does anyone know how long it usually takes for them to get back to you with a decision?
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
Exxon is notorious for their piss poor recruiting process. I have one friend who was told they were getting offers but shortly there after they got another call saying they decided to not extend one afterall. I would say they had one of the worst reps with my class because of how they approached internship recruiting...dragged people along and then gave projects that were not what they were told they were. Then fulltime was even worse...the pay is extremely high but I think only one person I know who got an offer took it and not a single intern went back.

Chevron on the other hand is pretty solid about it, but it all depends on when they are done interviewing at all schools. They may hand out offers if someone hits it out of the park and will ding quick if you absolutely bomb. Most companies will keep a few in limbo until they are done interviewing. Their rotations can be difficult though. One will be overseas and often another will be outside the bay area in the US. That was one huge negative for me since that many moves was not going to work on a personal level.
Current Student
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
Thanks, riverripper. Appreciate the input.

riverripper wrote:
Exxon is notorious for their piss poor recruiting process. I have one friend who was told they were getting offers but shortly there after they got another call saying they decided to not extend one afterall. I would say they had one of the worst reps with my class because of how they approached internship recruiting...dragged people along and then gave projects that were not what they were told they were. Then fulltime was even worse...the pay is extremely high but I think only one person I know who got an offer took it and not a single intern went back.

Hmm, that's interesting. They were late to the game, so to speak, at Ross this year due to the big snowstorm, which caused a one-week delay in their interview schedule. I heard that they ding pretty quickly, at least for one of their finance positions. Haven't heard about any offers yet. My interviewer told me that they will expedite the decision-making process this time, since they're already behind, due to the weather.

riverripper wrote:
Chevron on the other hand is pretty solid about it, but it all depends on when they are done interviewing at all schools. They may hand out offers if someone hits it out of the park and will ding quick if you absolutely bomb. Most companies will keep a few in limbo until they are done interviewing. Their rotations can be difficult though. One will be overseas and often another will be outside the bay area in the US. That was one huge negative for me since that many moves was not going to work on a personal level.

I interviewed for their Finance Development Program internship. I was told that I would hear back in about a week. Another person was told 2-3 weeks. So not sure. My interviewer also said that they had more schools to go to.

Fingers crossed.
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
If you get both, go with Chevron they are the better MBA program in my opinion...their is more attention to the MBA's and the culture I think is more enjoyable. Plus the location, Bay Area vs Houston, is more desirable for most people.
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Joined: 18 Jul 2010
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
yes go with chevron..
Current Student
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
Does anyone have any pointers on Shell, in particular their rotational leadership development program? Have an upcoming interview for this position. Thank you in advance.
Intern
Joined: 15 Nov 2009
Posts: 37
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Concentration: energy, international business, risk management
Q50  V38
WE 1: Oil and Gas engineer
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
Hi guys Im currently working as an engineer for a subsea construction company. The big oil guys are generally our clients. My interest post mba in a business development role in the gas power and alternative energy sector. Do these companies recruit international students for such roles if so what are the student profiles like in terms of prior workex, grades, GPA, GMAT
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
A few will hire internationals, others wont...though some will hire you overseas but not sure how that pay structure works. As for business development. It depends what you are talking about, I believe the best path to that is probably treasury at Exxon or the finance program at Chevron. If you want utilities there are lots of opportunities but utilities typically aren't international friendly. Alternative energy companies may be more open but still might be challenging.
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
Hello all,
I have been a silent observer on GC for a long time, today I thought of posting something. I browsed through the pages on this energy thread. But I didn't find a single post regarding the information about the wind energy sector. May be wind is a niche sector and slowly picking up. Can anybody please provide some information about the careers in the wind energy sector. There are some good companies in this sector, Suzlon, Vestas to name a few. These are the market leaders and have presence almost in all the parts of the world. What kind of positions are available for MBAs in these companies? Moreover, from which colleges are people hired predominantly in this sector.
Also, can anybody give some insight into the energy consulting. I guess all the major consulting companies have a department dedicated to this field but do they hire people having experience in the energy field or they hire general consultants and train them to work in this sector.
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
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A friend of mine joined acciona, which is one of the largest wind players in the US. I know a few people who interviewed with Vestas. Its a pretty small area still despite all things. Getting hired is not really school based yet. I know acciona is in chicago so they recruited at both Booth and Kellogg. Honestly, if you dont have a background its going to be a tough road. There are people with background, often engineering at these firms or utilities looking to return and they have a huge leg up. Wind is not that competitve of a market in the US right now, the goverment props it up and it seems to have slowed over the last few years.

As for consulting, the biggies hire people as generalists. You can pick office and might get more energy related projects but no promises. I discussed energy with a few of them and none seemed like it was going to be highly likely to get into energy exclusively even considering a strong background. There are some niche consulting firms but they aren't going to have the same opportunities and career prospects as BCG, Bain, etc...
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
Enjoyed this thread, and am definitely someone who is very interested in renewable and alternative energy. However, I am also considering the possibility of working in the industry indirectly. For instance, working with a car manufacturer on its line of electric vehicles -- or for a company that manufactures electric car components.

How difficult is it to break into finance or general management with car manufacturers -- particularly with EV manufacturers, or specifically with alt vehicle divisions of car makers? Is an engineering degree to go with the MBA absolutely mission critical, or is it possible to find work and advance without one? I assume that the West Coast is the place to be, if this is my interest?

Edit: Or, if I wanted to go this route (working with firms that produce EVs and other alt energy-related tech, without having an engineering degree to go with an MBA), would I be better off trying to work with a venture capital firm post-MBA?
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
How well does McCombs place students in 'Energy'? From the placement statistics, most of the students end up either in financial services or consulting (the usual suspects).

Also I have read that McCombs is a strong 'regional b-school'. Does this limit the opportunities that MBA grads have coming out of UT-Austin?

Thanks.
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Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
LSEguy wrote:
How well does McCombs place students in 'Energy'? From the placement statistics, most of the students end up either in financial services or consulting (the usual suspects).

Also I have read that McCombs is a strong 'regional b-school'. Does this limit the opportunities that MBA grads have coming out of UT-Austin?

Thanks.

I am a UT alum and have good friends who studied at McCombs with energy interests, so I feel I can comment with some knowledge on this.

Studying energy at McCombs = "I want to work in the oil and gas industry in Houston, or, perhaps, with an energy consulting firm such as Wood McKenzie."

To back this up, just look at who recruits there. Walk through the school and look at the plaques of the energy firms on the wall who contribute and sponsor events there. Oil and gas. And you may as well call the energy finance concentration the "oil and gas finance" concentration.

McCombs is not noted for its placement in the renewable energy industry. It is an afterthought there. Texas is an oil and gas school when it comes to energy, big time. I have had friends tell me to not go to McCombs if renewables are my interest. (And it is.) Now, I do know a McCombs grad who briefly worked in the renewables industry, but he worked in Houston. And he is the exception to the rule. And note that he worked in Houston. If you go to McCombs for energy, be prepared to work in Houston. (Possibly Dallas, if ExxonMobil gives you a look, but bet on Houston.)
Re: RiverRipper's Guide to Energy [#permalink]
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