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Some Choice Words

June 1, 2022
ISE Magazine’s Editorial Director’s monthly musings for 2022.

Studies have shown that on average, most adults make around 35,000 decisions each day. Granted, some of these decisions are minor concerns, like what to have for breakfast: yogurt or a donut. Other decisions matter a bit more. Like our choice of words.

Do we use words that share a commitment to continuous improvement? Or do we use words that ooze with sarcasm? Even worse, do we say we’re committed to improving but behind the scenes choose words that undermine positive change?

Knowing Ken Paker since 2018, I’ve noted how he carefully chooses his words, so he talks and walks continuous improvement.

On Fiber Realities
“While progress was slower than planned due to permitting complexities and contractor scheduling delays, TDS continues to be bullish on its fiber strategy and how it will transform the company in a very meaningful way over the next several years.”

On Retaining and Retraining Talent
“We have seen a lot of quality-of-life improvements for our associates as we go through these transitions. Of course, they are transitions nonetheless and we must always be patient with changes.”

On Sustainability Efforts
“The headwinds are power consumption of the ever-increasing broadband platforms that provide our broadband services. The tailwinds are often just following the natural evolution of networks towards fiber.” 

Read our Q&A with Ken to see more examples. Then, register at to attend his keynote presentation at ISE EXPO 2022. Only there will Ken share his honest insights about the challenges and opportunities related to transforming TDS’ network across 1,100 rural and suburban communities.

About the Author

Sharon Vollman | Editor-in-Chief, ISE Magazine

Sharon Vollman is Editor-in-Chief of ISE Magazine. She oversees the strategic direction and content for ISE Magazine. She also leads the educational content development for ISE EXPO. Vollman has created educational partnerships with the major communications and entertainment providers including AT&T, Verizon, CenturyLink, Frontier Communications and Cincinnati Bell. She has covered the telecom industry since 1996. Prior to that, she worked in advertising with Ogilvy & Mather and CME. Vollman has a bachelor’s degree in Journalism/Advertising from the University of Iowa.