A member of the 2018 NAMIC Next Generation Luminaries class, An is viewed by his peers as a rising star. The Spectrum Enterprise exec was nominated by Charter last year for NAMIC’s Executive Leadership Development Program and was part of Class XVII. When it comes to his specialty of business services, he’s seen a lot of progress. “The things we’re doing in the Hosted Communications or network virtualization space with SD-WAN really position us well with larger enterprise customers. That’s something that was hard to imagine when I first joined this business,” he says.
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?
It shows that there is still a lot of work to do when it comes to diversity and inclusion in TV, and Hollywood in general. There was an interesting article about the same study in The New York Times recently. It’s worth reading because it points out that the answer to this problem is a little more complicated than just bringing more people of color into the writers’ rooms. It’s also about helping to develop that talent. One could argue that’s a microcosm of what we see in so many areas, and why there’s no quick fixes or easy answers to the situation.
What’s your best advice to someone just entering the video content/distribution industry?
Learn as much as you can, and make sure you listen more than you talk.
What’s been the most dramatic change in your sector of the business today vs. three years ago?
The simple answer is everything. If you asked 100 people to name companies they associate with words like “innovative” or “cutting edge,” I’m not sure many of them would name their cable company. But, for those of us in the industry who have had a front seat to the changes that have taken place over the last few years, the ways in which we’re enabling the consumption of our content and services is pretty cool.
If you look at the convergence, and in some cases, the vertical integration of content and distribution, we’ve enabled a lot of that success. And that’s just on the on B2C side. On the B2B side, the things we’re doing in the Hosted Communications or network virtualization space with SD-WAN really position us well with larger enterprise customers. That’s something that was hard to imagine when I first joined this business.