'Oil' Company Boss Understands What Business He's Really In
from the embracing-change dept
Quite often we point out how companies fail to understand and adapt to the changing nature of their businesses, and how this leads to all sorts of missed opportunities. It's nice, then, to be able to point to a company who does seem to grasp the changing marketplace it's facing, and evolve accordingly. The CEO of Royal Dutch Shell, Jeroen van der Veer, penned an editorial (via WSJ Energy Roundup) in the Times of London earlier in the week, commenting that a rising demand for energy will outstrip the ability of renewable energy (such as wind and solar power) to replace fossil fuels. In addition to advancing power-generation and fossil fuel extraction technology, van der Veer says that improving energy efficiency should be a top priority, as half of the energy generated worldwide is wasted or lost. Think about that for a second: here's the CEO of an "oil" company telling people they should be using less of his product. But this statement reflects that van der Veer understands he's not the head of an oil and gas company, but rather an energy company that needs to play a significant role in shaping the future of the market. He understands that the business of fossil fuels, while not dying, is changing, thanks to natural and technological constraints and political pressures. While certainly Shell could choose to keep a narrow focus, to do so would be ignoring the bigger opportunities of the wider energy market. Furthermore, rather than taking the view that energy efficiency is an enemy, since it could reduce consumption, he understands that the long-term future of the market, and Shell itself, depend on it to survive.