Johnny McClanahan, President/CEO

Johnny McClanahan, President/CEO

One thing that’s great about our business is how our network can have a positive impact on so many people. Broadband benefits everyone from children to seniors — even if they use it for different things.

In many instances, NCTC has served four, five, or even six generations of families in our area. How many companies can say that? Obviously, times have changed, and the communication needs of your grandparents or great-grandparents were very different than yours are.

This issue of the magazine is focusing on one particular generation that seems to grab a lot of headlines: the millennials. While experts vary slightly on the parameters, “millennial” is the name given to people with birth dates from the mid-1980s through about 2005.

Depending on what article you’ve read most recently, you may feel millennials are either ruining everything or likely to save us all. But I believe one thing is certain: With millennials becoming the largest segment of our population, they are going to change the way companies operate and the way our society works.

One of the primary traits most millennials share is the pervasiveness of technology in their lives. In fact, most members of this generation — especially those in their teens and early 20s – have never known a world without internet-connected technology.

It may be easy to sit back and worry about the shifts this generation is already creating. But to me, it’s important to remember that these millennials are the future of our community and of NCTC.

Think about it with me.

  • Their complex lives frequently play out in a mix of social media and text messages, rather than face-to-face interactions.
  • With the advent of digital photography and phones with cameras, they are the most photographed generation in human history. 
  • They aspire to jobs working remotely, like coding, web design or other careers that couldn’t have existed a decade or two ago. And if they create their own companies, the business world — especially in rural America — doesn’t present nearly as many obstacles for startups as it once did. 
  • For entertainment, many of us grew up with only a few channels on the television set, but millennials are accustomed to hundreds of channels and programming on demand right on their tablets.
  • They take classes online, apply for jobs through mobile apps and often lead the way on digital innovation, whether smart home, telemedicine or other technology.  

The tastes and preferences of millennials are already having an impact on NCTC. Millennials are some of our most frequent users of services like online bill pay or the chat function our website. Most importantly, they need a robust internet connection to handle all of their devices, and we are working hard to deliver and improve that service every day.

Personally and professionally, I’m excited to see the way these young people make an impact on NCTC, our community and our world. And we’re going to adapt and work hard to continue meeting their communication needs just like we have for the generations before them.

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