LeAnn Chewning: My work-life balance

Behind the energy

I started at XTO 11 years ago as a 19-year-old single mom struggling to support my daughter and find my professional footing.

I jumped into the deep end of the ‘adult world’ working with people two, even three times my age. I had to mature faster than my friends and reevaluate my priorities if I wanted to succeed. My only goal at the time was to feed my daughter and pay my rent.

But XTO would soon open doors for me.

As a file clerk starting out, I had to balance my hectic and fast-paced work world with an equally hectic home life. Each presented unique challenges. Yet, I soon found tremendous support and mentorship from every corner.

New to the workforce, I was coached on what was expected and given a chance to exceed those objectives. I took on as many projects as I could; the more I learned, the hungrier I became to know more. In 2013, that appetite for knowledge paid off with a move into the corporate office and new responsibilities to work in the fleet department. While challenging, that role taught me skills that I still use every day.

Today, I oversee more than 3,000 vehicles – used by thousands of XTO employees around the U.S. – and ensure they are safe and dependable. For many XTO workers in the field, their vehicles are their offices, and they couldn’t do their jobs without them. From wellhead to processing and every step in between, my team and I work hard to make sure those “offices” are reliable. It’s my way of ensuring everyone gets safely home to their families.

All of this is still a balancing act. But I’ve learned that getting to cheer on my kids at their t-ball games sometimes means opening my laptop to finish a project for work once they’re in bed.

My daughter, who was just a toddler when I started working here, is now almost 13 years old. I’ve often shared with her what I’ve learned from my mentors at XTO. Most importantly, I remind her to be above nothing. That means that we should be open to new opportunities and never underestimate the potential of any job.

That’s helped me get to where I am today.

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