DON STOWERS, CHIEF EDITOR – OGFJ
PHOTOS BY SYLVESTER GARZA
WESTNEY HELPS COMPANIES IMPROVE PREDICTABILITY AND PERFORMANCE
AND REDUCE FINANCIAL RISK FOR MAJOR PROJECTS
The challenges of project management
OIL & GAS FINANCIAL JOURNAL
Dick, you’re a mechanical engineer by training. When and
why did you start Westney Consulting Group? Did you have
a background in business before launching the firm?
RICHARD WESTNEY: When I was an aircraft designer in the
late 1960s, I managed to get a masters of management science
degree. This was the early days of operational research and
management science where we learned to use mathematical
tools to solve management problems. So you might say that is
sort of a partial MBA. But up until I started the company, I had
no business experience. However, I think my work with Exxon
provided the most incredible training a person could possibly
have. Even today, Exxon is an industry leader in project man-
agement. I had wonderful mentors there and think I was very
well prepared to strike out on my own.
In the mid-1970s, I was managing large offshore projects for
Exxon. I really loved my work, but decided my true calling was
to enable others to succeed in managing major projects that
presented significant financial risk. That was the firm’s mission
then, and today we are still helping companies improve pre-
dictability and performance across the capex portfolio.
EDITOR’S NOTE: OGFJ recently visited with Dick Westney,
head of Westney Consulting Group, which he founded in
1978, and Justin Dahl, a principal with the firm, at their offices
in Houston’s upscale Galleria district to talk about their work
and the impact current tough business conditions are having
on major industry projects.
From left, Justin
Dahl, Dick Westney,
and Don Stowers.