Perception vs. Perspective

02 Apr ,2024

Short introduction about myself before I get into things. My name’s Nick Reiter and I’m a field supervisor in the Northeast. I have 10 years under my belt as a Mud Engineer and got my start with another major mud company but have worked the bulk of my career with AES.

As a member of the oil and gas community, you’ve already done something that average people are conditioned not to do. You’ve given up comfort in the immediate for comfort in the future. Many of the jobs in our industry require you to run on lack of sleep, work in extreme weather conditions, and face adversity from others who seek to deflect responsibility for their shortcomings on you. This last one is especially true for the Mud Engineers in the industry. Despite having a slew of contacts at your disposal to help, you as the Mud Engineer are the only one on site that stands alone as a sole representative. These are the reasons why this industry is as lucrative as it is because not everyone can handle this kind of adversity.

The oilfield is an eclectic grouping of individuals which means anyone can climb the ladder with the right attitude and work ethic. In the same room with the same titles, you can have individuals who don’t have a high school diploma working alongside people with master’s degrees who can’t change their own oil. Both types and everyone in the middle are needed for a company’s success and the recipe for advancement looks very similar. Take the unorthodox jobs when they’re offered and bounce around to different rigs to help out. The more things you see and the more contacts you make, the more doors will open throughout your time in this industry. The people who climb the fastest can look at the world with perspective and understand the difference between it and perception. Perception versus perspective can be summed up in one sobering sentence, “you are not the main character.” Perception is how you view the world, while perspective is how others view you and the world. If you can force yourself to use perspective, you can better understand what others need/want before they ask for it and why they have those desires. Everyone needs their back scratched and when you know how to, you’re more likely to get reciprocation.

This industry has chewed up and spit out some of the toughest and smartest individuals I’ve had the privilege of meeting. Come to work with a good attitude and the understanding that you’ll never know everything there is to know about oil and gas and there are no limitations on how high you can climb. If anyone is looking for a helpful resource, I would recommend the AES-produced podcast, The Flowline with Matt Offenbacher and Justin Gauthier. Like I said, you’ll never know everything but if you remember even half of what’s discussed on this podcast you’ll know more than most.

Blog Author: Nick Reiter, Northeast Engineering Field Supervisor