Employee Spotlight: Christopher Smyth

For this month’s Employee Spotlight we spoke to Chris Smyth, our NOC technician. He has been working for Vision Net for almost 14 years and we are glad to have him here. During the interview Chris talks about the pandemic impacts and why Fiber optics is so important. In light of the pandemic he has been assigned to work at home. We want to thank him and all of our employees for their efforts during these unprecedented times.

What is your position here at Vision Net and what do you do?

I work for our Network Operations Center as the Tier 2 – Transport Technician. I perform daily tasks as related to Vision Net and am a Liaison between the Network Operations Center and our Transport Department.

How this pandemic has been impacting your job?

I know many out there have not been so lucky to work for a company that is willing or able to adapt to the situation and stay operating but during my time here I have known Vision Net to be one of those companies that can overcome any challenge it is presented. Many of our customers have come to rely upon this ability to adapt, and many of them would otherwise not be able to maintain work at home without our continued support.

What has been the most important innovation you have witnessed in your lifetime?

Fiber optics. Without fiber optics and fiber optic networks we quite literally wouldn’t have the level of communication or bandwidth available to operate today’s streaming services or transfer large amounts of data across vast distances.  What once might take weeks to send (pictures, video, any kind of data) can be done in an instant.  One major example of this is doctors use Vision Net’s fiber optic network to send medical data to other hospitals which those doctors can use to save lives. Many people here often owe their lives to these doctors who really couldn’t do it without our fiber optic network.

What made you choose Vision Net?

Vision Net as always been the leading provider of cutting-edge technologies and experienced people. As a leader myself I wanted to be part of a winning team. Vision Net is not only a winning team, but we are a family of sorts. A well-oiled machine with people that fit. It was this well-oiled philosophy which really drew me to Vision Net. The benefits don’t hurt either.

What’s your favorite Vision Net perk?

I would say that the company offers many perks that other companies do not, like plenty of vacation, sick time, employee resources.

Vision Net has always been a leader in company perks. We do have a pretty nice break room, and the company barbecues and social setting are a very amazing unwritten perk.

What are 3 words to describe Vision Net?

Cutting-edge technology, customer oriented business, there are more than 3 words that I can use.

What advice do you have for prospective Vision Net candidates?

Vision Net has people from all walks of life, and we value when someone is real and from the heart. No matter your experience, everyone has a gift to contribute and Vision Net can use those gifts to further its position as a technology leader in the state. Don’t be afraid to work outside the box or submit that idea because we are a team that ultimately moves forward by people who speak up with those good ideas.

What’s the first thing you do when you get to work each morning?

I grab my coffee and get caught up on e-mails and issues that we may need to address from the NOC perspective.

What do you like most about your job?

I consistently get to assist others and provide valuable information to people who otherwise would be stuck. Solving problems and providing solutions is a very fulfilling position.

What do you find the most challenging about your job?

Sometimes there are problems that seem impossible to solve. But it’s also those very challenges that help me to rise up and become an even better employee.

What’s something that you’ve learned at Vision Net?
Vision Net has really taught me what it means to be a part of a successful team. It is also one of the reasons I came to work here was because I wanted to be a part of a successful team.

How would you describe Vision Net company culture?
Vision Net is a family of sorts and we take care each other. It’s a unique culture in that you’re not just a number here but you’re a name. And everyone knows everyone else. Everyone here cares about everyone else.

What is your favorite movie and why?
Brewster’s Millions. The primary reasoning behind this is the premise of the movie is a old man trying to show his grandson that money isn’t everything and he does this by making him spend 30 million dollars but have nothing to show for it after 30 days to get 300 million.

What is one food that you cannot resist?

Tacos.

Do you have any talents or hobbies?

I have many talents and hobbies. I work with radio as a hobby and am really skilled at building radio stations.

How do you define success?

Success comes in many forms. It can be achieving a goal you set or completing a task.  Often success can come in steps. To me success comes when you’re given a specific objective and you create a plan, carry it out, and complete the plan to achieve the goal. 

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