2017 AAPL Annual Meeting

The AAPL held its 63rd annual meeting this June in spectacular Seattle. The Emerald City welcomed landmen from around the country to enjoy its beautiful scenery, great food, and informational speakers. The educational lineup included panel discussions, sessions and presentations from industry experts of many different disciplines, and even featured Bill Thomas, CEO of EOG Resources, with his take on their success and today’s energy industry.

EOG Resources U.S. Horizontal Oil State Of The Industry - AAPL 63rd Annual Meeting

The event included networking throughout downtown Seattle, with Hot Play Happy Hour Socials for the Bakken, Eagle Ford, Scoop/Stack, Haynesville, Marcellus and Permian at many of the downtown restaurants and bars. A great Friday night party, aptly named The LandMan Bash, was held at the Museum of Pop Culture near the Space Needle. There were ample opportunities to meet with business associates, friends, and AAPL members alike.

Andrea Hines, Audrey Curry, Susan Orjias, Wendy Dalton, Sheila Miller, Caryl Devlin - AAPL 63rd Annual Meeting

The setting in Seattle was perfect as the weather cleared and was sunny every day with 70-80 degree days and cooler nights, plus no humidity making for a very nice treat (especially for us south Louisiana folks). There was a Golf outing on Saturday held at Gold Mountain Golf Club which had great scenery as well.

Trinidad Hernandez, Mike + Audrey Curry, Andrea + Richard Hines, Sueanne + Randy Nichols - AAPL 63rd Annual Meeting

With this annual meeting there were many opportunities to get re-certification credits while learning about new plays and companies doing business in every producing basin in the US. iLandMan was fortunate to have three of our executives participating in the sessions and social events. These outings are a great occasion to spend time with clients, getting to know them on a personal level while building upon our business relationships. We talk features and functions, strategy for upcoming projects, and generally discuss how to leverage our technology to be successful.

Thanks to the AAPL Staff and Annual Meeting Committee for hosting a fantastic meeting and event!

Richard Hines, CPL – Vice President – iLandMan

For more pictures from this great event, check out the gallery below or view the album on our Facebook Page where you can tag yourself and your friends.

2016 AAPL Annual Meeting

The 62nd Annual AAPL Meeting began on a somber note with the shooting spree at Pulse Nightclub in downtown Orlando on Saturday night. As you traveled around the city you noticed the heightened security at all public places and events. This year’s meeting was held at the Hyatt Regency Resort in Orlando Florida, a very nice hotel just a few minutes from the Disney area and outside of downtown. It was a rather large hotel with meeting space located onsite, nice lounges, and a great pool area with a water slide.

Mike Curry Audrey Curry Andrea Hines Richard Hines - 62nd Annual AAPL Meeting

The AAPL board met on Tuesday and Wednesday to discuss the state of the industry as well as put several motions into action to help tighten the belt due to budget concerns in this time of commodity price volatility. There was also a director’s round-table discussion featuring landmen from around the country discussing topics such as certification, meeting venues, technology advancements and revenue & expenses. Committee meetings were held to finalize the work done over the last year and roll out several projects that have been in the works. The board also held its quarterly meeting, welcoming the new executive officers and bidding farewell to its outgoing members.

The annual meeting opening reception was held at the Hyatt on Wednesday evening with a Havana Nights theme. Those in attendance enjoyed the music, food and festivities of this opening night party. Cigars were rolled and given to those wishing to  partake and there was even an outdoor patio cigar party for all to enjoy.

Dinner Table - 62nd Annual AAPL Meeting

Thursday, the opening meeting and seminars had many good topics and speakers including a keynote address from Tom Peters of McKinsey & Company, who entertained the audience with his wit and industry knowledge. Courses offered that day included: Fossil Fuels, Oilfield Economics, M&A Perspectives, Petroleum Geology, Global Perspective on LNG, and General Mining Laws. There was also a Golf Tournament at the Grand Cypress Golf Course, a Jack Nicklaus signature course that was converted to a links-style course. It was a great time for networking and enjoying the day with other golf enthusiasts. Later that evening the Landman Bash was held at Universal Studios, where there were refreshments and karaoke. I never knew we had so many who were willing  to share their dancing and singing talents with the group!

Karaoke 6 - 62nd Annual AAPL Meeting

Friday was another day of classes on topics such as Acquisitions, Joint Operations in Down Economic Times, Landwork Technology, Negotiating the Oil & Gas Lease, Business Etiquette, Offshore Leasing, and Principled Leadership. The day was topped off with a Reception hosted by iLandMan, for many of its clients and friends, the President’s Cocktail Party, and then the President’s Dinner Dance with live entertainment.

Norman Snyder Diane Snyder Natalie Gibson Mike Gibson Andrea Hines Richard Hines - 62nd Annual AAPL Meeting

Saturday held even more seminar classes to help all in attendance better their skills and understand how trying times can make you a better landman.

Even though there were sad events that occurred in Orlando during this week, the landmen took time to pray for the victims, as well as get together and discuss not only the local current events, but also our industry and strategies for helping others get through these tough times.

Richard Hines, CPL – Vice President – iLandMan

For more pictures from this great event, check out the gallery below or view the album on our Facebook Page where you can tag yourself and your friends.

Staying in the Game: 7 Tips for Independent Landmen

As an independent or staff landman in today’s market, you are trying to figure out if you are still in this game. Maybe you are wondering if you even want to be in the oil & gas land business anymore. Was your project discontinued? Were there major cut backs? Are you just worried that the future is bleak with all the bad news of layoffs and more?

Let’s face it, as a landman today, you are required to do more than you have ever done before. You must have a vast arsenal of talent and resources to stay relevant to an employer as well as the company that has hired them. This means that the typical landman needs to continue to be open minded about job opportunities, job performance, and going beyond what has been traditionally expected.

Landmen today should set in place a plan of action to help boost their confidence as well as organize their work habits. Here are 7 tips that can help you in this endeavor:

  1. Remove your fears. Remember the landman is the energy team’s most innovative and motivational member, so confidence in your actions is key to making all deals a reality. Have confidence in your ability, education and work product. You have spent years learning and honing your skills to do the best job, so why not tell others that you are the best? Remember telling the truth about one’s skill set is not boasting!
  2. Set goals and start with small steps. For example, let’s look at public speaking. If you are afraid to speak to crowds, start by speaking in front of a few friends then work to a larger audience. If you need help with using technology like some type of presentation software, start by asking the right people for assistance. This effort will assist you in attaining your goals one step at a time so you can continue to move ahead to the next set of goals you have identified for your professional growth.
  3. Take action. Don’t hesitate or procrastinate, but move forward realizing that you can accomplish anything you put your mind to.  Make a plan, write it down and ACT on it. This is so important, as most people just think or talk about making a change.
  4. Use and improve your skills. Just like in sports, practice makes perfect. The repetitious nature of research, agreement creation, and negotiations make them ideal for improvement. Remember that you may need help from others to improve these skills or maybe just a little practice to get better. If you find that you are lacking in some areas, take classes, ask mentors or find an article published on the subject and read as much as you can about it. Many training courses and seminars are offered, so take advantage of all you can.
  5. Build a network. Whether it be locally or nationally, colleagues and friends can help you get the most out of your work. No matter if they are employed inside or outside of the energy industry, surround yourself with people who can help you succeed. Join groups or associations both in your home region and on the national level. Don’t be shy about introducing yourself and/or your achievements. Remember, everyone loves a winner.
  6. Ask for assistance. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Everyone has asked someone for help at one time or another in their life. Understand that most people are very willing to lend a hand in solving a problem or two. They also don’t mind discussing their experiences, especially if it means that they can help someone achieve the same success they have achieved. Once you have succeeded don’t forget to say thank you and return the favor or pay it forward to the next person needing assistance. A good practice may be to look for a mentor, as there are many professionals that would love the opportunity to share their knowledge with a hard working fellow landman.
  7. Use technology. Technology has come a long way in recent years. With mobile apps, computer programs, search engines and smart maps, today’s landmen have a wealth of information tools at their disposal. Don’t be afraid to ask the hard questions, as you will find that some companies are making claims they can’t support, and other companies are doing things nobody else is doing or has even thought of.  Just because it seems out of the norm doesn’t mean it is not the better way of completing the task. Don’t be afraid to try something new as the results might surprise you!Richard Hines, CPL - Vice President of iLandMan

Though these times may be trying as we maneuver through the current low commodity price environment, remember that opportunities only come around once in awhile. Take advantage of this time to improve your skills, investigate new technology that will help you get ahead of the rest of the industry, and make new friends. Yes, you can still be in the game, get ahead and even be a leader in the land industry with a little planning and effort!

Richard Hines, CPL – Vice President – iLandMan

Staying in the Game: E&P Companies

You have watched the ping pong game of oil prices over the last six months and now you are trying to figure out if you are still in the game, or if you even want to be in the game. One thing to consider is that hydrocarbons as a fuel are here to stay. You won’t see jets or 18-wheel trucks being propelled by solar panels or wind turbines. Gasoline, as well as other various forms of fuel, are made from oil. So if you or your exploration company have felt a little down lately, don’t fret. Things will definitely change with time.

Recently, I have been seeing an interesting phenomenon. With a small window of price stability, exploration and exploitation deals are taking shape. All kinds of work is beginning to appear on the horizon in the form of mergers and acquisitions, due diligence, curative matters and title work, to name a few. Land expertise is needed in all of these areas, so if you are a startup or larger independent, things should begin to brighten by year’s end. I know many have incurred budget cuts and layoffs, but these will hopefully diminish as we go into the fourth quarter.Oil Prices Graph - Mar. 2015

Some really great gas wells are being completed from the Gulf Coast to the North East and, based on this, I predict that natural gas will be making a comeback. While it may be a while, we should see some action soon. Watching the emergence of LNG and its growth into a fully-fledged powerhouse is going to be very interesting. Companies with high gas-to-oil ratios are hoping for a strong comeback and a paradigm shift, making natural gas a must-have commodity.

From our vantage point we are seeing companies begin to take advantage of this lull in activity and a low pricing environment which is creating huge opportunities. I have also noticed that the companies that are truly organized are joining forces and beginning to make headway. Some, who are employing the use of cutting edge technologies, have begun to overtake and will eventually outpace the ones still using the big chief tablet and slide rule. As the old saying goes “one man’s loss is another man’s gain”.

However, most exploration land departments continue relying on antiquated accounting programs, excel spreadsheets, and hand-drawn colored or stagnant digitized maps. They keep trying to answer the most basic, as well as the most complex questions, that their systems and processes are simply not built for. These systems were built to report acreage from only a surface point of view. In today’s complex leases, a three dimensional view using depths and formations is necessary to analyze and make the right decisions based on ownership at these intervals.

New companies coming into the exploration and exploitation mix will be doing so with fewer personnel resources and more outside contractors. They will need software and mapping services that can extend the capabilities of their companies. These companies as well as the established E&P’s need to examine all the options available to help understand and use the data from the many acquisitions that are starting to take place.

With the great strides made in land software technology, companies need to investigate what is available, especially in the areas of leasing, curative, drilling and production. Just as the shift to using three dimensional data in seismic changed everything for the geophysical departments, viewing land data in three dimensions is now changing everything for land departments. These innovations are helping companies to understand the massive amounts of data being exchanged in the acquisition and divestiture market.

iLandMan allows you to depth segregate your tracts and leases so as to ascertain what your ownership, working interest, and even royalty or overriding royalty interest is on a formation by formation basis. This increases accuracy when determining which acreage is expiring based on pugh clauses or money owed on acreage from shut-in wells. The land department now has the ability to not only answer today’s common questions, but also the complex questions of tomorrow.

Richard Hines, CPL - Vice President of iLandMan

Take advantage of this time to investigate, act and ensure your company has the technology that will help you get ahead. By keeping watch on industry changes and newly available tools, your company can stay in the game, get ahead of the pack, and even become an industry leader.

Richard Hines, CPL – Vice President – iLandMan

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