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Kim Webb

Won Park

Bringing the Best and Brightest Talent Together

After 100 years in business, PG&E is in the process of creating a new type of utility. To do that, we must be willing to embrace different and nontraditional perspectives. That's why our MBA Leadership Program, in place since 2000, is so valuable. Each year, we try to bring aboard several of the best and brightest young leaders of tomorrow and give them the tools and attention to succeed today. If they thrive, our company and our customers and communities prosper as well.

Kim Webb, a manager in PG&E's Business Transformation Program Management Office, joined the company as part of the MBA Leadership Program.

Won Park an MBA associate at PG&E, is a project leader on the company's innovative new ClimateSmart program, which enables customers to become "climate neutral" on a voluntary basis.

Why is the MBA Leadership Program so crucial to PG&E and its customers?

Webb: I think people are starting to see that the energy sector is in a very dynamic state today. It's where some of the most complex and challenging problems that currently face our society are being addressed and solved. To accomplish this requires great minds, great passion and great people. The MBA Leadership Program gives us a real advantage when it comes to recruiting and retaining talented folks who can break through and make a difference.

Park: A lot of the MBAs have really fresh ideas about how to help the environment, and they want to work with us at PG&E because we are seriously focusing on issues like climate change and energy efficiency and trying to lead the way. We're all determined to do something about global climate change—to take responsibility and help identify and implement the innovative solutions that will be needed both here in California and throughout the world.

What kinds of programs do the MBAs actually get to work on at PG&E?

Webb: Our core jobs could involve anything from work on business transformation to innovative human capital strategies to managing our portfolio of assets; most of us also volunteer for project opportunities that allow us to learn as much as we can about the business.

Park: I've been working on ClimateSmart, which we think can remove at least 2 million tons of CO2 from the atmosphere over its three-year demonstration period. That's the equivalent of taking 350,000 cars off the road for a year. ClimateSmart provides our customers with the opportunity to take action on global climate change, while also enhancing California's natural environment. What is really exciting about ClimateSmart is that it was developed by employees who care about the issue, understand that our customers do too, and thought creatively about how to take a concept and turn it into a workable program. It's these types of activities and innovation that our culture fosters; and it provides great opportunities for folks that work at PG&E.

Do you see yourselves as the next-generation leaders of companies like PG&E?

Webb: Well, we have a long way to go and a lot to learn. But PG&E employees are a great team of people to learn from. And, if we can find some of the solutions, then PG&E's customers will benefit, our communities will benefit and society at large will benefit as well.

Park: We're thinking globally but acting locally at PG&E. This is a good model for the utility industry.