Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Shell Trading Career Stories: Christine Sullivan, Senior Trader

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I was a mechanical engineer by degree.

I went to work as an engineer at the Shell Deer Park refinery

and then went on to an operations role

in the natural gas liquids trading group, became a trader in that group,

and then moved onto the crude trading group from there.

Having an experience out in the various sites,

whether it's a refinery, a chemical plant,

really helps you when you come into trading

because you've seen first-hand how the sites make their decisions,

what are their economics, what are their drivers,

where they get their value from

and you're able to then use that to help you optimise things for them,

but also make money for trading as well.

I think a lot of people can feel intimidated coming into trading

and feeling like they don't know things about the trading business.

So, being willing to ask the questions,

being willing to come out and say what you don't know

and ask somebody, because there are resources literally everywhere,

people with all kinds of different experience,

and I find - because it still happens to me

after all my years in the business - there are things that I'm learning still

and people are very willing to share their knowledge.

One myth I've heard about the trading business is that it's hard

for a female to come and succeed in this group.

Work-life balance is cited often.

I've had three children during my time here

and have a very busy family life

and, you know, it's worked out fine for me.

Trading is a very uber-competitive environment,

but people are willing to help, I mean it behoves everyone

for people to be successful.

It's very much a team effort,

so even though people are obviously assessed as an individual,

teamwork is a big part even of how an individual is assessed because

if the team doesn't work, the whole group doesn't work.

What I like about trading is every day

I can see the impact I've made to the bottom line.

You see that moving up, hopefully, on a daily basis

and it just makes you want to do more.

The Description of Shell Trading Career Stories: Christine Sullivan, Senior Trader