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How to Survive the Mineral Processing Industry with Humour (Maybe)

Surviving the mineral processing industry is no easy task. Gone are the days when you could direct ship your 1,000 g/t gold ore to China for $2,000/oz (that’s how mining worked up until 2011, right?).

Here at Sepro, we mostly survive by laughing about it behind the scenes (it’s more flattering than weeping underneath our desks) or flicking paper balls at our favourite coworkers. But since we can’t officially endorse paper ball-based workplace violence, we thought we’d share some of our humour. 

See a post full of inside jokes that only we think are funny? Don’t worry, that’s not a marketing intern gone rogue, it’s our gift to you from all of us at Sepro. And it’s the only one you’re getting because our accounting department won’t let us send out any more gift baskets. So keep your eyes peeled for future posts like this one that just aren’t nearly as funny as we think they are.

Here are some tips for surviving our industry if your coworkers won’t embrace the whole paper ball thing. 

Organization is Critical

Move over Marie Kondo, we’re the new organizational champs on the block. Delete vendor newsletters (that’s right, we see you), throw out that NI43-101 that makes your mineral property look like a Prius next to a lot full of Teslas, and discard any notion of gold going back to $2000/oz. At least in the short term, your economic dread will fade away as you go back to playing Minesweeper. 

Of course, we can’t fully implement Marie Kondo’s principles. If we got rid of everything in the mining industry that didn’t bring us joy, all we’d be left with would be a bunch of beer and that one guy who runs the golf tourneys.

Hey, we clean up pretty nicely at the bar, okay?

Don’t Ever Change

In a similar vein to classic high school yearbook comments, “You rock! Don’t ever change!” would be our industry’s slogan. While computers have gone from infancy to being able to fit in our pockets over the past 40 years, it seems as though the mineral industry never really grew up. Some industries change every single day, but much like a teenager full of angst, mineral processing doesn’t like being told to wash off the eyeliner and trying out a new look

To know everything about our snail’s pace industry, make sure to read the riveting De Re Metallica by German scholar Georgius Agricola, published in 1556. Who needs ninth edition mineral processing textbooks when you could whip out a sluice box and call it a day?

It’s the Economy’s Fault

Like an honest breakup, we can take an “it’s not me, it’s you” approach when times get tough. We’re currently looking a bear market right in the face and if things start to dip, hey it’s not us, it’s you. And by “you” we mean whoever it was that stopped buying up gold in 2010 like the apocalypse was coming. 

And if all else fails, you could always hop over to the marijuana industry—that’s what Jim from engineering did, right? …Sandra? Where did everyone go? 

We hope that these tips help you survive the mineral processing industry. It can be tough but hang in there, you’ll get it, and if you don’t, well, someone’s probably handing out free beer somewhere. If you have any survival tips of your own, let us know on our Facebook and LinkedIn! And don’t forget to visit us at our upcoming conferences, assuming accounting doesn’t cut us off again.