Time to Detox?

Let's think about what we can give back to the society we depend on.

So, unlike the majority of turkeys, you’ve survived another Christmas of excess; and thoughts are probably returning to those same old clichés and noble ideals.

Some will join a gym, some will go for a swim, some will embark on a detox program and get stuck into a regimen of yoghurt and fruit teas. Others will stop smoking or drinking and go for a dry January.

But this year we should think bigger; we should think outside the usual parochial box, and in the spirit of these changing times, dream beyond simply detoxing our physically neglected bodies.

It’s easy to relate the idea of detoxing, to the environment around us; and this quickly leads us to consider climate change, “Energy Transition” and the prudent aims of “Net Zero”.

And that brings us bang up to date with the zeitgeist that is “ESG”; or at least with the “Environmental” part of it.

Now we’re getting somewhere!!

So what about the “Social” and “Governance” parts of “ESG”? Could they maybe do with a metaphorical detox too?

Hell Yeah! After 2 years with Covid weighing us down at every turn, with fear, uncertainty and doubt; and even longer, struggling with the most prolonged and painful downturn in the oil price that I can remember; and all that on top of the trauma of Brexit … maybe our social compass needs a bit of recalibration.

Let’s look at our companies’ business relationships. Do we hold ourselves and our companies to high social values? Do we direct a percentage of profits into local, social and community initiatives? We all need to do a bit more in the coming year to help lift each other up and get out of this dark place that we have come to inhabit.

And whether the enduring image of the tough North Sea worker rests easily with mental health issues or not, we all need to open up, recognise that we are in this together and support each other.

Hopefully we are nearing the beginning of the end of this wretched pandemic, and maybe as an industry we should be thinking about what we can give back to the society that we depend on for our life blood.

As for Governance ... without becoming overtly Political, I think it's clear to all of us right now, how important good governance is. Avoidance of conflicts of interest; elimination of questionable business practices and acknowledging the wishes of stakeholders all seem to be more relevant than ever.

This time of year presents us with an opportunity to start afresh, to revisit our habits and to resolve to be better. In 2022 let’s think bigger, and extend our new year’s resolutions to the industry as a whole, perhaps using ESG as a guide.