Playing a pivotal role in steering a company toward success, a Director’s responsibilities encompass strategic decision-making, governance, overseeing operations, and ensuring the company’s objectives align with stakeholders' interests. A seasoned professional and the Director at Helmerich & Payne, Nathan Hursh embodies the essence of effective leadership and strategic direction. Born in an Oklahoma town, Nathan’s journey has been shaped by a global perspective acquired from a young age. This exposure has instilled in him a profound appreciation for diverse cultures and experiences, a trait that greatly influences his leadership style. Graduating from the University of Oklahoma with a degree in Biotechnical Chemical Engineering, Nathan’s educational background showcases his dedication to the sciences and engineering disciplines.
Nathan’s multifaceted background, global perspective, dedication to excellence, and adherence to philosophical principles serve as a driving force in propelling the company toward sustained success. His vision, leadership, and commitment to fostering a culture of innovation position him as a catalyst for growth within the organization. Let’s hear more from him in this interview.
Can you provide a brief overview of your professional trajectory and the driving force behind your daily routines?
My fulfillment stems from consistently pushing my boundaries. Each month, I set personal challenges that encompass both physical and mental aspects, aiming to embrace each day as an opportunity for self-improvement. This routine begins with an early rise, followed by a dedicated workout regimen, and a commitment to confronting the most challenging tasks head-on.
In my professional journey, I actively pursue demanding assignments, particularly those with an international scope. I actively seek projects characterized by high risks, where the potential for failure is significant, such as spearheading new divisions or venturing into unexplored territories with uncertain outcomes.
I firmly believe that growth lies beyond the comfort zone.
What specific strategies does the company employ to sustain this long-standing legacy?
An intriguing facet about H&P is its operation as a technology-oriented entity. Here, everyone is not merely encouraged but also entrusted with the responsibility to effect improvements, irrespective of how seemingly minor they might be. It's the incremental, daily enhancements rather than sweeping transformations that significantly contribute to the company's excellence.
In my professional journey, I've encountered numerous discussions regarding fostering a positive work culture. However, it wasn't until I became part of H&P that I truly experienced it firsthand. In my estimation, this company stands as the finest I've had the privilege to be associated with.
As a Director, what are the most recent strategic initiatives you've implemented to enhance operations and engage new markets?
Opportunities beyond the United States, particularly in this region, hold unique promise. Nowhere else globally have unconventional wells been drilled as extensively as in the United States. With H&P standing as the leading market entity, consistently recognized as the top drilling company in the U.S., no other drilling entity possesses the depth of experience and success in unconventional drilling as H&P does.
While the GCC region might have initially lagged in commencing unconventional drilling, this delay provides an opportunity to leverage valuable insights gleaned from the U.S. experience. H&P is well-positioned to provide solutions and deliver impactful results to the GCC, unlocking fresh reserves and prospects in the process.
How do you nurture an innovative culture within your team, encouraging them to maximize their potential through the utilization of cutting-edge technologies?
I actively seek out individuals who demonstrate exceptional prowess in their respective domains, possessing knowledge that surpasses my own. Prioritizing continuous learning is fundamental to our achievements. I curate a list of essential readings that team members must engage with, fostering ongoing discussions on innovative concepts. In a fiercely competitive industry where rivals strive to outpace H&P's leading position, our dedication to advancement remains steadfast.
Personally, I focus on initiatives that yield the most substantial impact and entrust the team to manage their respective responsibilities.
Describe your leadership style and the principles or strategies that guide your approach as a leader.
Central to my leadership is the empowerment of my team. This entails outlining a clear mission alongside key results (OKRs), offering consistent support, and ensuring each team member has access to the essential resources for success. Accountability stands as a pivotal aspect within this framework.
I wholeheartedly embrace the notion that challenges serve as platforms for growth. I firmly believe that confronting and navigating through adversity with tenacity and resilience paves the way for progress. Every obstacle encountered is perceived as an opportunity for enhancement, fostering greater strength and resilience.
What lies ahead as your future destination?
Continuing my international work, particularly in a location that brings joy to my family, remains a primary focus. The excitement of discovering novel opportunities that foster personal and professional development is my driving force. In this pursuit, the significance of job titles diminishes as I prioritize enriching experiences and embracing fresh challenges.
For me, the international dimension of my career offers a diverse and stimulating atmosphere while ensuring the well-being and happiness of my family. I actively pursue roles and projects that immerse us in various cultures, offer new perspectives, and contribute to our overall growth. The essence of a job is not merely in its title but in the invaluable experiences and opportunities it provides for both my family and myself.
Given your extensive professional experience, what advice would you offer to emerging leaders within the industry?
Your success lies firmly within your grasp; external circumstances should never serve as justification for failure. Embracing personal accountability as the cornerstone of your accomplishments is crucial. Although challenges may emanate from external sources or unforeseen events, your capacity to adapt, persist, and take charge of your own trajectory is the determining factor in your success.
Additionally, time represents your most invaluable yet finite asset. Effectively harnessing its potential requires decluttering your schedule and concentrating on what truly holds significance. Identifying your foremost priorities and prioritizing them ensures optimal use of your time. Consistently aligning your actions with your most significant objectives not only enhances your chances of success but also enables prudent management of this precious resource.
Nathan Hursh, Director, Helmerich & Payne
A seasoned professional and the Director at Helmerich & Payne, Nathan Hursh embodies the essence of effective leadership and strategic direction.