Hiring Women Isn’t the Problem but Keeping Them is, Says ConocoPhillips CEO Ryan Lance

The oil industry is doing a better job of hiring women. Keeping them remains the challenge, says ConocoPhillips CEO Ryan Lance.

Conoco, the world’s biggest independent oil producer, has seen its percentage of female and minority workers climb among its youngest generation of employees, Lance said in an interview from his Houston headquarters on Thursday.

Boosting diversity is a priority at the company, which has 13,000 employees, Lance said. Women make up a quarter of his eight-member executive leadership team and account for four of 10 seats on the board of directors. Conoco didn’t see a rise in sexual harassment complaints last year, he said, even as high-profile cases made headlines.

Still, there’s work to be done, especially in making it easier for women to sustain a career in the business, Lance said.

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