J.D. Myers,

This past year Myers founded the Millennial Council at Cox in Virginia after he recognized the need to better engage the generation. He then expanded and renamed the council the Generational Alliance, which embraces Cox’s multigenerational workplace and addresses issues that the business and employees face. Myers recognizes the importance of mentorship. “I advise anyone entering the industry to find a mentor, change up that mentor often, and then pay it forward by becoming a mentor…and never be afraid to ask questions,” he notes.

A February 2018 UCLA study revealed that of the 45 new scripted shows approved for 2017-18 across broadcast, cable and digital platforms, only four were from creators of color, all of whom were black. What is your reaction to this report?
There’s opportunity here to motivate and encourage young creative minds regardless of their color to share their stories because simply put, if they don’t see themselves as the creator, that number will never increase.

What’s a recent example of a step forward for diversity in the industry?
The “Black Panther” movie, I can’t get enough of it and clearly I’m not the only one … the film’s box office success validates a desire from the audience for a diverse, gender-balanced cast and story line and the development of this mega-hit demonstrates the industry’s acknowledgement and commitment to featuring today’s society.

In what areas should the industry step up its efforts with regard to diversity and inclusion?
There is huge opportunity in CQ (cultural intelligence) training—diversity is no longer about the color of one’s skin, in today’s global multicultural digital world, we must be capable of relating and working effectively across cultures in order to succeed by embracing our own unconscious bias and affirmative bias awareness.

What’s your best advice to someone just entering the video content/distribution industry?
Anyone who knows me, knows that I am big believer in the power of mentorship, so I advise anyone entering the industry to find a mentor, change up that mentor often, and then pay it forward by becoming a mentor… and never be afraid to ask questions.

What’s been the most dramatic change in your sector of the business today vs. three years ago?
Three years ago the average download connection speed in someone’s home was roughly 25Mbps with somewhere between five and seven connected devices—now fast-forward to today and even our refrigerators and crockpots are connected to the Internet, so I would point to the Internet of Things and its impact on demand and investment not only influencing how we do business today but shaping our business going forward.

If there were a reality show based on your office, what would it be called?
Here at Cox Virginia, I would say you’re tuning into “The Invincible Invisibles,” nothing is going to stop us from getting the job done – whether it be a technician in your home or upgrades to our network – we do it quickly and quietly with little interruption to ensure our customers have the connections they need to get on with the things that are important to them.