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AMALAN MELAYU TUA

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The 4 Key Elements Of Great Leadership

​Anyone in a management or supervisory role is a leader, but not everyone in those positions exhibits true leadership. Think of leadership as next level management. The best leaders take their expert management skills and combine them with people skills to become well rounded and highly successful. The difference between being a good leader and a great one is in the relationships you build with your team. These are the four key components of great leadership.

Coaching, not directing.
A great leader is a teacher and a coach, not a dictator. They help their teams develop and grow, and support them by providing training in various forms, including coaching and mentoring. They understand when they need to nurture their teams, and when they need to push them. It’s about finding the balance between giving up too much control and being too controlling. A great leader knows that there is no specific ratio to this, and that it changes depending on the situation.

To be a great coach, you must understand that everyone has different needs and that there isn’t a one size fits all solution. Learn how your team members work best, and tailor your coaching to match their work style. When you’re responsible for very large teams, it’s much more difficult to know which style will work best, so it’s best to experiment with a few styles until you find the one that gets the desired results. That ties in to the next point, being adept.

Being adept.
Great leaders are prepared for change to happen at any time. They’re able to think and make decisions quickly, and more importantly, they know how to rally their teams to make results happen. One day that could mean giving the team free reign to come up with ideas for a project and a deadline that they need to meet. The next day, the deadline could get moved up, and the leader would have to assign tasks and provide more structure.

As a leader, you have to be very aware of everything that’s happening from a process standpoint as well as a people standpoint. Paying equal attention to both is important. By ensuring that your team is performing to the best of their abilities, you’ll be better able to keep the process on track. If you ignore one, the other will suffer.

Respect.
Respect is a two way street, and it must be given to be had in return. Great leaders understand this, and show their team respect through trust. No employee likes to be micromanaged, as it indicates to them that you don’t trust their abilities. In fact, it’s one of the quickest ways to lose respect. Leaders must allow their employees to take risks and accept that they will fail sometimes. If you can’t trust your employees, they won’t trust you. A sure sign of a respected and trusted leader is when employees are comfortable coming to them with questions.

The best leaders have no problem working alongside their employees and aren’t afraid to roll up their sleeves and jump in to help the team when necessary. Your own personal leadership style will dictate how often you do this, as will the nature of your work. Some leaders need to constantly work with their teams, whereas others are able to be more hands off. The key is to step in and put in that extra work when it’s necessary, and not leave your team struggling.

Being a master communicator.
Great leaders can tailor their communication style to meet the needs of any situation. A leader must be an excellent listener, in order to truly understand the needs of their team. Great leaders understand that different situations call for different communication styles, and are able to switch between them with ease. Without high level communication skills, no leader will truly be successful.

To master the art of communication, you simply need to practice. There are six key communication styles you should be familiar with – listening, advising, directing, motivating, teaching, and coaching. Each one has it’s own place and time to be used, and are most effective when combined. Being adept in your communication methods is absolutely necessary. By becoming a master communicator, you’re able to clearly express yourself, and therefore lead with greater clarity.

No matter what your title is, you can become a leader. Practice these skills, and you’ll be on the path to great leadership.

Source : Forbes (ARTICLE)

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Don’t fail fast — fail mindfully

This is a wonderful Ted Talk with lots of lesson to be learnt.

The Talk Transcript for just in case.

[This talk contains mature language Viewer discretion is advised]

If we traveled back to the year 800 BC, in Greece, we would see that merchants whose businesses failed were forced to sit in the marketplace with a basket over their heads. In premodern Italy, failed business owners, who had outstanding debts, were taken totally naked to the public square where they had to bang their butts against a special stone while a crowd jeered at them. In the 17th century in France, failed business owners were taken to the center of the market, where the beginning of their bankruptcy was publicly announced. And in order to avoid immediate imprisonment, they had to wear a green bonnet so that everyone knew they were a failure. Of course, these are extreme examples. But it is important to remember that when we excessively punish those who fail, we stifle innovation and business creation, the engines of economic growth in any country.

Time has passed, and today we don’t publicly humiliate failed entrepreneurs. And they don’t broadcast their failures on social media.In fact, I think that all of us can relate with the pain of failure. But we don’t share the details of those experiences. And I totally get it, my friends, I have also been there.

I had a business that failed and sharing that story was incredibly hard. In fact, it required seven years, a good dose of vulnerability and the company of my friends. This is my failure story.

When I was in college, studying business, I met a group of indigenous women. They lived in a poor rural community in the state of Puebla, in central Mexico. They made beautiful handmade products. And when I met them and I saw their work, I decided I wanted to help.

With some friends, I cofounded a social enterprise with the mission to help the women create an income stream and improve their quality of life. We did everything by the book, as we had learned in business school. We got investors, we spent a lot of time building the business and training the women. But soon we realized we were novices. The handmade products were not selling, and the financial plan we had made was totally unrealistic. In fact, we worked for years without a salary, hoping that a miracle would happen,that magically a great buyer would arrive and she would make the business profitable. But that miracle never happened.

In the end, we had to close the business, and that broke my heart. I started everything to create a positive impact on the life of the artisans. And I felt that I have done the opposite. I felt so guilty that I decided to hide this failure from my conversations and my resume for years. I didn’t know other failed entrepreneurs, and I thought I was the only loser in the world.

One night, seven years later, I was out with some friends and we were talking about the life of the entrepreneur. And of course, the issue of failure came out. I decided to confess to my friends the story of my failed business. And they shared similar stories. In that moment, a thought became really clear in my mind: all of my friends were failures.

Being more serious, that night I realized that A: I wasn’t the only loser in the world, and B: we all have hidden failures. Please tell me if that is not true. That night was like an exorcism for me. I realized that sharing your failures makes you stronger, not weaker. And being open to my vulnerability helped me connect with others in a deeper and more meaningful way and embrace life lessons I wouldn’t have learned previously. As a consequence of this experience of sharing stories of businesses that didn’t work, we decided to create a platform of events to help others share their failure stories. And we called it Fuckup Nights.

Years later, we also created a research center devoted to the story of failure and its implications on business, people and society and as we love cool names, we called it the Failure Institute. It has been surprising to see that when an entrepreneur stands on a stageand shares a story of failure, she can actually enjoy that experience. It doesn’t have to be a moment of shame and embarrassment, as it used to be in the past. It is an opportunity to share lessons learned and build empathy. We have also discovered that when the members of a team share their failures, magic happens. Bonds grow stronger and collaboration becomes easier.

Through our events and research projects, we have found some interesting facts. For instance, that men and women react in a different way after the failure of a business. The most common reaction among men is to start a new business within one year of failure, but in a different sector, while women decide to look for a job and postpone the creation of a new business. Our hypothesis is that this happens because women tend to suffer more from the impostor syndrome. We feel that we need something else to be a good entrepreneur. But I have seen that in many, many cases women have everything that’s needed. We just need to take the step.And in the case of men, it is more common to see that they feel they have enough knowledge and just need to put it in practice in another place with better luck.

Another interesting finding has been that there are regional differences on how entrepreneurs cope with failure. For instance, the most common reaction after the failure of a business in the American continent is to go back to school. While in Europe, the most common reaction is to look for a therapist.

We’re not sure which is a better reaction after the failure of a business, but this is something we will study in the future. Another interesting finding has been the profound impact that public policy has on failed entrepreneurs. For instance, in my country, in Mexico,the regulatory environment is so hard, that closing a business can take you a lot of time and a lot of money.

Let’s begin with the money. In the best possible scenario, meaning you don’t have problems with partners, providers, clients, employees, in the best possible scenario, officially closing a business will cost you 2,000 dollars. Which is a lot of money in Mexico.Someone who earns the minimum wage would have to work for 15 months to save this amount. Now, let’s talk about the time. As you may know, in most of the developing world, the average life expectancy of a business is two years. In Mexico, the process of officially closing a business takes two years. What happens when the average life expectancy of a business is so similar to the time it will take you to close it if it doesn’t work? Of course, this discourages business creation and promotes informal economy.

In fact, econometric research has proved that if the process of declaring bankruptcy takes less time and less money, more new firms will enter the market. For this reason, in 2017, we proposed a series of public policy recommendations for the procedure of officially closing businesses in Mexico. For a whole year, we worked with entrepreneurs from all over the country and with Congress. And the good news is that we managed to help change the law. Yay!

The idea is that when the new regulation comes into force, entrepreneurs will be able to close their businesses in an online procedurethat is faster and inexpensive.

On the night we invented Fuckup Nights, we never imagined that the movement would grow this big. We are in 80 countries now. In that moment, our only intention was to put the topic of failure on the table. To help our friends see that failure is something we must talk about. It is not a cause of humiliation, as it used to be in the past, or a cause of celebration, as some people say. In fact, I want to confess something. Every time I listen to Silicon Valley types or students bragging about failing fast and often like it’s no big deal, I cringe. Because I think that there is a dark side on the mantra “fail fast.”

Of course, failing fast is a great way to accelerate learning and avoid wasting time. But I fear that when we present rapid failure to entrepreneurs as their one and only option, we might be promoting laziness. We might be promoting that entrepreneurs give up too easily. I also fear that the culture of rapid failure could be minimizing the devastating consequences of the failure of a business. For instance, when my social enterprise died, the worst part was that I had to go back to the indigenous community and tell the women that the business had failed and it was my fault. For some people this could be seen like a great learning opportunity for me, but the truth is that the closure of this business represented much more than that. It meant that the women would stop receiving an incomethat they really needed.

For this reason, I want to propose something. I want to propose that just as we put aside the idea of publicly humiliating failed entrepreneurs, we must put aside the idea that failing fast is always the best. And I want to propose a new mantra: fail mindfully. We must remember that businesses are made of people, businesses are not entities that appear and disappear magically without consequences. When a firm dies, some people will lose their jobs. And others will lose their money. And in the case of social and green enterprises, the death of this business can have a negative impact on the ecosystems or communities they were trying to serve.

But what does it mean to fail mindfully? It means being aware of the impact, of the consequences of the failure of that business. Being aware of the lessons learned. And being aware of the responsibility to share those learnings with the world.

Thank you.

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NON HYDROCARBON COMPONENTS OF CRUDE OIL

The following are the major non-hydrocarbon components of natural gas and crude oil production.

(1) Sulphur Compounds.

Pure Sulphur and Sulphur compounds are generally present in reservoirs and are contaminants.  The main compounds are Hydrogen Sulphide (H2S), Carbonyl Sulphide (C0S), and Mercaptan (RSH), but the most unwanted is definitely Hydrogen Sulphide.   For your information, with mercaptan, the “R” represents an alkyl group CH3.

Hydrogen Sulphide is a highly toxic and corrosive gas having an extremely odorous smell in small concentration but please note that, never trust your sense of smell when dealing with Hydrogen Sulphide, therefore, remember to wear your own personal Hydrogen Sulphide detector when working in Hydrogen Sulphide area.

Therefore, it must be removed from petroleum products after downstream processing of the crude oil and from natural gas.

In general, contract requirements for the purchase of LNG normally state that the final product should contain less than 0.003% to 0.005% Hydrogen Sulphide.

(2) Water.

Water (H2O) is one of the universal contaminate in a reservoir.  Water exists in a well stream in both liquid and vapour states.  Free water is removed from oil and gas streams by means of a production separator.  One of the biggest problems caused by water entrainment in natural gas is the formation of hydrates.

A hydrate is a crystalline solid structure formed when the gas is cooled after the reservoir or in pipelines.  Hydrates can be removed by inhibitors that lower the freezing point of water and dissolve the ice structure or by absorption techniques, which removes the water from the gas.

(3) Carbon Dioxide.

Carbon dioxide (CO2) can exist in large concentrations in a well stream.  It is very corrosive in the presence of water and it lowers the heating value of natural gas because of its low boiling point (-1100F at 14.7 psia) and therefore must be removed.  Carbon Dioxide is removed along with Hydrogen Sulphide in many of the desulphurization processes with no double processing is required.

 (4) Nitrogen.

Nitrogen (N2) appears naturally in natural gas and comprises some 80% of the air we breathe.  It is a colorless, odorless gas and to all intents, an inert gas that does not react with hydrocarbons present in crude oil or natural gas.  It simply occupies volume or space.  Nitrogen lowers the heat value of gas.

(5) Helium

Helium (He) is commercially produced during the liquefaction of natural gas.  Some natural gas streams contain up to 8% helium by volume.  When natural gas is cooled to a liquid phase, helium remains in the vapor phase due to its low boiling point (-268.5°C) which makes helium when extracted an excellent refrigerant.  Extracted Helium is a valuable by-product of natural gas, but left in the gas, it lowers the heat value.

(6) Oxygen

Oxygen (O2) is not a natural contaminant but appears due to leakage of air into low pressure production systems.  Oxygen can be very corrosive in the presence of water vapor and when mixed with hydrocarbon, can be explosive.  In is necessary to support life and as a result, when equipment is shutdown for entry, the atmosphere must be tested for an adequate Oxygen content, but, the Oxygen must be removed before re-commissioning.

(7) Miscellaneous

Other miscellaneous compounds found include metallic compounds such as sodium, calcium and magnesium that are cations in the brine that accompanies the well fluids.  A second group of metals include Vanadium, Nickel, Cobalt and Iron.

Crude oil also contains solid particles such as asphaltenes and resins that are suspended in the crude.  These products contribute to emulsion stabilization in field processing if they settle out at the interfaces but they may also cause foaming.  Wax deposits can also be present due to the lowering of temperatures until the wax comes out of solution or as a result of flashing of the crude oil in flow equipment.

Naturally occurring radioactive materials (NORM) are also present in reservoir rock structures and are associated with well fluid production.  Radioactive scale can contaminate downhole tubing and surface production equipment.  This problem needs to be identified and tested for prior to equipment entry.

Arsenic and Mercury are two elements occurring in nature that cause problems in the natural gas industry.  These materials are both toxic and may also cause corrosion and catalyst poisoning.

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Classification of Crude Oil and Natural Gas

Crude oil is a mixture of hydrocarbons with some non-hydrocarbons.  Different areas of the world produce crude with different proportions of the five main hydrocarbon series. The character of the crude oil is determined by the proportion of paraffinic components relative to cyclo-paraffinic components.

Hence there are:

  • light crudes (large proportion of C5-C8 hydrocarbons),
  • Heavy crudes (naphthenic hydrocarbons),
  • Waxy crudes (very long chain paraffins).

Different crude have different proportions of each of the hydrocarbons and therefore different cuts or products can be expected with different specification when the crude is processed. (Hence, this would also lead to different in pricing and export duty payable for the said crude oil, determined by host government or it’s appointed regulators per crude oil name)

Paraffinic & Napthenic Crude

  • Paraffinic crudes are normally fairly low specific gravity crudes and are often light (like straw) in colour. They can easily and quickly be refined.
  • Naphthenic crudes generally have a higher specific gravity than paraffinic crudes and are darker (like tar, brown to black) in colour. Naphthenic crudes are not as easily fractionated as paraffinic crudes and as such give a greater percentage of residues.

Crude Distillation

The initial product range from a crude distillation unit is based on the difference in boiling points of the products.  Crude oil has a very low initial boiling point with a final boiling point that could exceed one thousand degree Fahrenheit.  Crude distillation results in products that have broad ranges in their boiling points.

Impurities

Impurities in the crude are also an important factor.  Most crudes contain some sulphur and acid gases that are toxic and corrosive, making refining more difficult and expensive.

Natural gas is a mixture of gases taken from a reservoir, or, gas which is removed from produced crude (solution gas).  The main constituent of natural gas is methane with various lesser proportions of ethane, propane, butane, pentane, hexane and heptane.  Hydrocarbons from other series such as Alkenes, Benzenes and Naphthenes may also be present as traces.

Methane and ethane cannot be condensed at the pressures and temperatures which are experienced at the wellhead and will always appear as gases.  Impurities often occur in natural gas and in some instances, in large quantities.

The main impurities are hydrogen sulphide, carbon dioxide, nitrogen and Helium.

Water is associated with the production of both crude oil and natural gas.

Aliphatic Hydrocarbons

Aliphatic hydrocarbons are acyclic and alicyclic hydrocarbon compounds found naturally in, or derived from crude oil and natural gas.

 Acyclic compounds form open chains and the most common forms in natural gas are:

  1. methane
  2. ethane
  3. propane
  4. butane
  5. pentane
  6. hexane

Alicyclic compounds are those compounds whose atoms are arranged in a single ring without double or triple bonds.  These are heavier components and are not normally associated with natural gas.

Condensate

Condensate is a very light hydrocarbon fraction in a liquid form and is associated with natural gas production but is not produced from all gas reservoirs.

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Hydrocarbon Field Life Cycle

1

  • ACQUISITION PHASE

    • Sunk cost
    • Acquisition cost
  • EXPLORATION PHASE

    • G&G costs (Geological & Geophysical)
    • Number & well cost in the effort to explore potential hydrocarbon reservoir worth exploring for development and production.
    • Timing of exploration & appraisal costs
    • Probability of exploration success
  • DEVELOPMENT PHASE

    • Reserves for fields
    • Development scenarios including but not limited to hydrocarbon evacuation philosophy.
    • Development cost detailed by fixed structure, facilities, pipeline, etc
    • Development drilling cost
    • Phasing of each type of development CAPEX (Capital Expenses)
  • PRODUCTION PHASE

    • Start in the first year of production
    • Hydrocarbon production profile can be generate.
    • Hydrocarbon demand forecasting and demand matching between the supplier ability to supply and demand of the receiver or end buyer.
    • Typical OPEX (Operating Expenses)
  • ABANDONMENT PHASE

    • Abandonment cost
    • Timing of abandonment
    • Salvage value

Abandonment usually opt for when the the field is at the end of it economic lifetime, that is, once its net cash flow turns permanently negative although still technically possible to continue to produce hydrocarbons from the field. Therefore, careful economic studies shall be develop in order to ensure that all possible aspect to maximize net cash flow for the field have been thoroughly considered.

Note:

(1) However, with respect to gas field, there might be or there is some difference especially when dealing with gas holding period in which a contractual buyer is sought for the estimated gas produced since unlike liquid hydrocarbons (crude oil and condensate) which can be stored in tank farms, gas produce must be supplied directly as it is produce since it cannot be stored without further processing (by converting it to LNG, liquefied natural gas) which would incur further higher investment.