It has been several weeks since my last post and, in the big scheme of things, the challenges we faced that led to the creation of “Start the Conversation” have not only continued but escalated in intensity. After a brief “time-out” to assess and gain even more perspective, I thought it time to post again in order to keep pressing the conversation into action.
In two region-wide events with Eric Metaxas and Alex Epstein we have focused on two major points:
– The responsibility of leadership in such a time of abundance and challenge
– The value of the oil and gas industry to the health and well-being of the world; and our responsibility in the Permian Basin to measure up to our worldwide importance and value
As the weeks and months have gone by, the pressures on every facet of our region have intensified almost daily. Whether it is the ever-growing stress on infrastructure, the critical need for housing, the goal of educational superiority, the demand for healthcare excellence as well as the ever-growing need for quality of life excellence, and even community safety and well-being; every direction you look, the needs are great and the time is critical.
So, the question still looms large, “What are we to do?” I suggest to each of you, it’s time for some extreme engineering.
If you allow your mind to go back in time, you will easily remember when the prevailing view about the Permian Basin was not one of optimism and opportunity. As a matter of fact, when I moved here in 1999, most everyone I spoke to thoroughly believed the best days of the Basin were gone and the best one could hope for was to settle into a lifestyle of maintenance and protectionism rather than opportunity, vision, and advancement. Indeed, the times have changed! But, why did the times change?
I submit to you, the Permian Basin, and the entire oil and gas industry of North America is renewed and revitalized because people and organizations refused to live entrapped in the “accepted way of thinking”. Instead, many started engineering with a vision of what could be, rather than within the constraints of old paradigms and practices of the way things were and the way things should be.
Today, at a social and civic level, we face the same challenges of old ways of thinking and worn out paradigms, right here in the Permian Basin.
The challenges we face today because of the visionary engineering of the oil and gas industry must be met with the same rejection of standard operating procedure and replaced with another form of visionary engineering within our communities, taxing entities and every facet of life and well-being throughout the Permian Basin.
Whether it is a new, shared and combined strategy across all taxing entities, a new set of paradigms, processes and programs for education, new and aggressive demands for action at the state and federal congressional level, or even greater and more radical calls for new ideas and new systems not yet envisioned, the time is now, the opportunity is now – no time can be wasted.
This visionary engineering will require at least one thing; it will require an absolute willingness to come together as one region and combine every resource professionally, politically and financially towards a prioritized list of necessary needs for 5, 10, 15 and 20 years. We will not be able to raise our regional game to the necessary level the new boom of opportunity demands without an “all for one and one for all” extreme ownership of our shared opportunity.
So what do you say? Can we do this?