Printer Friendly

Telecom Management Function Recognized As a Major Resource in Corporate World.

Welcome to the third leg of California's Summer Triple Crown--first the Democratic National Convention in San Francisco, then the Olympics in Los Angeles and now the 22nd Annual Conference of the Telecommunications Association in San Diego. Our conference grows each year in both quantity and quality, and this year is no exception. Record numbers of participants are expected in all categories: members, non-members, spouses, press and exhibitors. We've certainly come a long way since the first conference I attended in 1969 at the Bahia Hotel on Mission Bay. We had about 49 exhibit spaces that year and a handful of attendees. This year there are over 400 exhibit booths, with demand for even more. And the registered attendees alone will exceed 900. Of course, there have been major changes in our industry over those past 15 years effecting the role of the telecommunications manager dramatically.

I remember back in the early sixties when I was in the fledgling communications department for North American Aviation (now Rockewell) at the Autonetics plant in Anaheim. Friends would ask my wife "Just exactly what does he do: what is telecommunications?" Her response would be "Oh, I don't really know--something to do with telephones I guess." Not too far from the truth actually--at that time. We were more or less coordinators or facilitators acting as liaison with the telephone company. Our charter was "to improve the best possible service at the least possible cost." Very few choices or alternatives existed in those days, but times have really changed. Telecommunications is "where it's at." Almost daily an article on telecommunications appears in the local newspaper or other publication. Communications News, celebrating its 20th anniversary here with us, was a real pioneer and one of just a few "trades" at that time.

Business is also adopting a different perception of telecommunications. We are no longer viewed as a "necessary evil" or an overhead expense to be controlled. Management now truly sees telecommunications as a corporate resource, especially since many companies are designing, buying and operating their own systems. Telecommunications departments are filling the role and doing the tasks that traditionally the telephone companies did for us.

All the changes in technology and environment that have contributed to, or caused, this new awareness, have also created a great demand for education in our field. There is a critical "need to know" that we all feel. The technology is exploding, the lines between telecommunications and computing are being eliminated and legislative and regulatory decisions have a daily impact on the way we do our jobs. Better-Trained Personnel

Where telecommunications managers are coming from is also changing. This responsibility was usually assigned to the chief operator, the facilities department, the office manager or some similar function. Telecommunications departments are coming into their own with well-trained, well-equipped personnel. Resources and training required to do the job are now being provided.

Where did we get our training in the past? Well, I consider myself to be from the "old school" in the telecommunications field. Typically, our education began with the "Ma Bell college of communications knowledge." Many of us came up through the ranks of telephone technicians: that is, installers, repair splicers and so forth. Then into the marketing side of the house, and finally on to telecommunications coordination or management with a large company.

The new managers are now better trained and educated to meet the challenge; their backgrounds are in engineering, computer sciences, business administration and accounting, to name just a few.

Associations must change also-to meet the needs of their members. The need for education is obvious. That's why you all are here--to attend the seminars and panel sessions, and to be exposed to new equipment, systems and services. The regional association is well structured to respond to the needs of the communications professional--with monthly meetings and programs, frequent local one and two-day seminars, a meeting place to discuss common problems with contemporaries and, of course, the annual conference. But don't forget that members must contribute to the association by telling their leaders what they want, and then providing the support to attain those goals. As TCA members we have three obligations: first, to our companies who employ and sponsor us; second, to the association itself by making contributions of time and effort; and, last but not least, to ourselves, to learn all we can and to become more professional.

In closing, I would like to thank all of you who together make this conference possible: the attendees, the exhibitors and sponsors, the press, conference committee members and, of course, our spouses, who support us all year. I hope you all enjoy the conference and find it a worthwhile learning experience.
COPYRIGHT 1984 Nelson Publishing
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1984 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Author:Ballestracci, J.
Publication:Communications News
Article Type:transcript
Date:Nov 1, 1984
Previous Article:Profit-Making Pros and Cons Are Involved in Telecommunications Resale and Tenant Services.
Next Article:Changing Technology and Industry Mean New Approaches to Network Management.

Related Articles
New ICA Survey Offers Updated Telecom Professional Profile.
Partnering for performance.
Outsourcing the tax function: a survey.
When corporate communication budgets are cut.
Beyond the Figurehead Facade.
Can physical and ICT security cooperate? Those charged with protecting information and communications technology (ICT) and those responsible for...
NTT Com Wins World Communication Award for Best Customer Care.
Aramex Recognized for Excellence in 3PL and Commitment to CSR.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2016 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters