Beyond the Sale | OEC News

OEC Fiber’s human-centered approach revolutionizes the way we think about sales and service

We’ve all had those uncomfortable encounters with salespeople who seem to listen only with the intent to sell, not to understand. Picture the insistent car salesman who can’t grasp why a minivan isn’t suitable for a bachelor or the persistent telemarketer who calls during dinner, oblivious to your polite declines. These experiences leave us wishing for a genuine connection, for someone to hear our needs rather than pitch their product. Breaking free from these all-too familiar frustrations, the OEC Fiber Business team is revolutionizing service by redefining the essence of salesmanship. 0413321801

“It’s about ensuring that a business is set up for success,” said OEC Fiber Senior Manager of Sales & Business Development Michelle Hohlier. “It’s not about us or getting a sale. It’s about providing the highest quality and service to our members and subscribers.”

Isaac Lewis, a key member of OEC Fiber’s Sales and Business Development team, approaches each interaction with a commitment to understanding and meeting the specific needs of his clients.

“I’m motivated by feeling good about what I do, not sales numbers,” Lewis said. “Our sales team takes pride in simplifying our subscribers’ lives rather than complicating them. We’re not selling you something you don’t need; we’re inquiring about what you need.”

During sales calls, members of the business sales team navigate the dual worlds of technology and business with the ease of someone who speaks both languages fluently.

“We speak with a variety of people, from business owners to IT professionals,” Lewis said. “Sales calls require striking a balance between speaking the language of tech without overwhelming and communicating clearly.”

Lewis’s past role as a fitness instructor, particularly in group classes, sharpened his skill at making complex concepts understandable. He applies this same skill set to his role at OEC Fiber, approaching every business engagement with an eye for the unique communication needs of his clients.

“It’s about clarity and relevance,” Lewis said. “My goal is to ensure technical details enhance, rather than complicate, a business owner’s vision.”

The OEC Fiber team’s commitment to superior service is evidenced in the hands-on approach during site visits. Lewis and Site Visit Coordinator Dan Pryor focus on the collaborative nature of the encounter, evaluating the compatibility of technical systems with OEC Fiber’s network.

“These sessions are about aligning our capabilities with the client’s vision and capacity,” Lewis explains. “This level of personal engagement exemplifies OEC Fiber’s mission to provide not just support, but guidance and understanding.”

OEC Fiber’s dedication is also manifested in the meticulous planning and execution of its installation and infrastructure management. OEC Fiber’s strategy for placing network conduits and taps ensures that the technical infrastructure performs optimally and integrates seamlessly into the physical and operational layout of the businesses they serve.

“I have worked in other similar companies, but the planning and execution we do for installations has been planned meticulously,” Pryor said. “Our installations are designed to be as unobtrusive and effective as possible.”

Other internet and fiber companies typically measure installation success based on two factors: the time spent on installation and the number of revisits required to fix issues from a drop, Pryor said.

“Install techs are often paid based on the number of jobs they complete, which means that the more time they spend at a location, the fewer jobs they can complete,” Pryor said. “This can create pressure to complete jobs as quickly as possible, leading to mistakes.”

Rather than focusing on speed or the number of jobs we can complete, we emphasize service, ensuring the work is done to a high standard, Pryor said. This approach encourages installers to take their time and pay close attention to the details rather than rushing through jobs to maximize their pay. By prioritizing quality over quantity, OEC Fiber can provide subscribers with reliable, long-lasting installations that meet or exceed their expectations.

This reveals a company culture that prioritizes exceeding member and subscriber expectations and responding to the changing tides of business needs. Lewis reflects on the industry’s evolution and OEC Fiber’s proactive steps to ensure their offerings are current and leading edge.

“We’re not just keeping up; we’re pushing forward,” Lewis said. “This dedication to service excellence drives OEC Fiber’s growing success in a fiercely competitive market.”

In every aspect of its operations, OEC Fiber views its subscribers as customers and collaborators in progress. They offer a level of service that anticipates needs and provides solutions designed to aid the growth and evolution of the businesses they partner with.

“Our clients are our partners, and their success is our success,” Lewis said.

Isaac Lewis and the OEC Fiber Business team represent a vanguard in the fiber industry, heralding a shift from transactional interactions to relationships built on understanding and mutual benefit.

By placing an unwavering focus on service before sales, OEC Fiber is not just connecting businesses to the digital world but creating a blueprint for the future of member and subscriber service.

The Power Behind Your Power | OEC News

You’ve likely noticed OEC crews out and about, working on power lines and other electrical equipment in our community. It’s no secret that a lineworker’s job is tough––but it’s a job that’s essential and must be done, often in challenging conditions. This month, as we celebrate Lineworker Appreciation Day on April 18, I thought I’d share some interesting facts about electric lineworkers with you.

The work can be heavy, in more ways than one. Did you know the equipment and tools that a lineworker carries while climbing a utility pole can weigh up to 50 pounds? That’s the same as carrying six gallons of water. Speaking of utility poles, lineworkers are required to climb poles ranging anywhere from 30 to 120 feet tall. Needless to say, if you have a fear of heights, this likely isn’t the career path for you.

Lineworkers must be committed to their career––because it’s not just a job, it’s a lifestyle. The long hours and ever-present danger can truly take a toll. In fact, being a lineworker is listed in the top 10 most dangerous jobs in the U.S.

Lineworkers often work non-traditional hours, outdoors in difficult conditions. While the job does not require a college degree, it does require technical skills, years of training and hands-on learning. Did you know that to become a journeyman lineworker can take more than 8,000 hours of training (or about four years)? That’s because working with high-voltage equipment requires specialized skills, experience and an ongoing mental toughness. Shortcuts are not an option, and there is no room for error in this line of work.

Despite the many challenges, OEC’s lineworkers are committed to powering our local communities. During severe weather events that bring major power outages, lineworkers are among the first ones called. They must be ready to leave the comfort of their home and families unexpectedly, and they don’t return until the job is done, often days later. That’s why the lineworker’s family is also dedicated to service. They understand the importance of the job to the community.

Nationwide, there are approximately 120,000 electric lineworkers. Here in Central Oklahoma, OEC has lineworkers who are responsible for keeping power flowing 24/7, 365 days a year. To do this, they maintain 5,800 miles of power lines across seven counties and 2,200 square miles. In addition to the highly visible tasks lineworkers perform, their job today goes far beyond climbing utility poles to repair a wire or string fiber lines. Today’s lineworkers are information experts who can pinpoint power outages from miles away. Line crews now use laptops, tablets, drones and other technologies to map outages, survey damage and troubleshoot problems.

Being a lineworker may not seem like a glamorous job, but it is essential to our community’s life. Without the exceptional dedication and commitment of these hardworking men and women, we simply would not have the reliable electricity or internet services that we need for everyday life.

So, the next time you see a lineworker, please thank them for the work they do to keep power and internet flowing, regardless of the time of day or weather conditions. After all, lineworkers are the power behind your power. Please join us as we recognize them on April 18, and follow “#ThankALineworker” on social media to see how others are recognizing lineworkers.

Energy-Saving Trees | OEC News

OEC named 2024 Tree Line USA Utility by Arbor Day Foundation for the 18th year in a row

For the seventh year in a row, OEC is partnering with the Arbor Day Foundation to give free trees to member-consumers.

“Members who take advantage of energy efficiency measures in the months leading up to summer can maximize their savings,” said Daniel Lofland, energy efficiency solutions specialist. “We are proud to offer the Energy-Saving Trees program free of charge to our members.”

Energy-Saving Trees is a research-based, easy-to-use online mapping tool that takes the guesswork out of tree planting. By entering simple information about your home and yard, the tool calculates where to specifically and strategically plant trees for the greatest energy- and money-saving benefits.

Planting the right tree in the right place is key to maximizing the energy-savingbenefits that trees provide. When planted properly, a single tree can save a homeowner up to 20% on energy costs.

Members who are interested may begin claiming their one free tree on April 4 and must be able to pick it up in Norman on April 20 between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.

  • A limited number of trees will be available. Limit one per membership. Must be able to pick up your tree at 480 24th Avenue NW in Norman on April 20 between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.

7TH ANNUAL TREE GIVEAWAY

Claim your free tree beginning April 4!
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Read more articles from the Co-op News:

Beyond the Sale | OEC News

By placing an unwavering focus on service before sales, OEC Fiber is not just connecting businesses to the digital world but creating a blueprint for the future of member and subscriber service.

Read More »

The Power Behind Your Power | OEC News

Despite the many challenges, OEC’s lineworkers are committed to powering our local communities. During severe weather events that bring major power outages, lineworkers are among the first ones called.

Read More »

OEC Electric and Fiber Awarded Large Business of the Year | OEC News

In an impressive testament to its commitment to community and excellence, Oklahoma Electric Cooperative (OEC), along with our subsidiary OEC Fiber, was awarded the esteemed “Large Business of the Year” by the Norman Chamber of Commerce. The accolade was presented during a ceremony at the Embassy Suites in Norman, Oklahoma, on Feb. 1, highlighting our impact on the communities we serve and our unwavering dedication to core values.

Read More »
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OEC Electric and Fiber Awarded Large Business of the Year | OEC News

Service and community impact: a testament to dedication and innovation

In an impressive testament to its commitment to community and excellence, Oklahoma Electric Cooperative (OEC), along with our subsidiary OEC Fiber, was awarded the esteemed “Large Business of the Year” by the Norman Chamber of Commerce. The accolade was presented during a ceremony at the Embassy Suites in Norman, Oklahoma, on Feb. 1, highlighting our impact on the communities we serve and our unwavering dedication to core values.

The award reflects the collective efforts of every team member at OEC and OEC Fiber, whose daily operations ensure reliable services and member satisfaction.

“This honor is a testament to our employees and board’s unwavering dedication to being more than just service providers, but good and wonderful neighbors to our members and subscribers,” said OEC CEO Patrick Grace. “It’s about connecting, empowering and enriching our communities in every action we take.”

David Goodspeed, President of OEC Fiber, remarked on the long-term significance of our work.

“At OEC and OEC Fiber, we’re not just laying fiber optic cables or maintaining power lines; we’re building lifelines that connect our members to the world,” Goodspeed said. “This award from the Norman Chamber is a gratifying acknowledgment of our efforts to connect and empower our community. It reaffirms our resolve to keep pushing forward, making sure no one is left behind in today’s digital world.”

The Norman Chamber of Commerce’s recognition of OEC and OEC Fiber underlines the importance of our mission beyond the accolade itself. It reinforces the vital role of cooperatives in improving lives, whether through electrification or enhancing connectivity, ensuring that our legacy of service continues for future generations.

From the Top — April 2024 | OEC News

Last month, OEC and OEC Fiber were awarded the Large Business of the Year by the Norman Chamber of Commerce. This accolade is a profound acknowledgment of our entire team’s hard work and dedication. Each member of our workforce, from those in the field to our member service associates, has played a vital role in taking care of our members and subscribers.

It’s rewarding to be recognized by our community, especially since the true essence of our excellence lies in being reliable to the point of being taken for granted. The lights go on, and unless there’s an outage, it’s not something you actively think about – but it’s always there, thanks to our team’s efforts.

Our board, embodying our core value of leadership, shares in this honor. However, I firmly believe that excellence springs from the collective action of all employees, doing their jobs in extraordinary ways.

What sets us apart is the significance of our work. In a profit-driven world, our cooperative perspective is about more than the bottom line; it’s about genuinely serving our members and subscribers. That mission provides an edge, making our jobs rewarding and fostering a culture where financial success translates into tangible benefits for our members, like lower rates and better service.

Our ‘people-first’ philosophy extends internally, where we focus on creating an environment where employees feel valued and appreciated. This approach is fundamental to providing superior service. When our employees are engaged, passionate and feel cared for, they, in turn, take exceptional care of our members and subscribers.

Speaking of employee appreciation, Lineworker Appreciation Day is April 18. Let’s take a moment to thank our lineworkers for their remarkable work in ensuring that our community has reliable access to electricity. They perform critical and hazardous work, especially during extreme weather or emergencies. Their dedication is essential to the comfort and convenience we enjoy every day. If you see a lineworker this month, show your appreciation. Learn more on page 6.

Our DNA is centered around serving others, and that includes taking care of our own team. By making the well-being and growth of our team a priority, we’re able to create a culture where the work not only gets done but is done exceptionally well. We will continue to support and empower each other with the same spirit of service that defines us.

Beyond the Sale | OEC News

By placing an unwavering focus on service before sales, OEC Fiber is not just connecting businesses to the digital world but creating a blueprint for the future of member and subscriber service.

Read More »

The Power Behind Your Power | OEC News

Despite the many challenges, OEC’s lineworkers are committed to powering our local communities. During severe weather events that bring major power outages, lineworkers are among the first ones called.

Read More »

OEC Electric and Fiber Awarded Large Business of the Year | OEC News

In an impressive testament to its commitment to community and excellence, Oklahoma Electric Cooperative (OEC), along with our subsidiary OEC Fiber, was awarded the esteemed “Large Business of the Year” by the Norman Chamber of Commerce. The accolade was presented during a ceremony at the Embassy Suites in Norman, Oklahoma, on Feb. 1, highlighting our impact on the communities we serve and our unwavering dedication to core values.

Read More »

The ORU Report: Mar. 24 | OEC News

Learn about the organizations making a difference with OEC Foundation’s support.

At the February meeting, the OEC Foundation, Inc. board approved nearly $40,000 for organizations and individuals.

Down Syndrome Association of Central Oklahoma received $10,000 for microwave-based cooking classes for teens and adults with Down syndrome. The classes are meant to teach and encourage independent living skills while having fun and making friends.

“The kitchen is not just about cooking,” said OEC Foundation Director Lisa Todd. “The attendees learn to be self-sufficient when making meals at home, follow directions, do math while measuring ingredients and so much more.”

Little Axe American Legion Post 274 received $5,000 for a new electrical panel and building maintenance upgrades. Follow their Facebook page for announcements on their monthly fish fry, bingo games, flea market Trade Days and other events benefiting the community.

The Noble Police Department requested support for their canine officer program and received $4,000. NPD’s former canine officer retired in 2022 due to old age. Their new canine will be trained in narcotic detection, patrol work, and human tracking of missing children, older adults and fugitives.

Rose Rock Habitat for Humanity, previously known as the Cleveland County Habitat for Humanity, received $10,000 for their homeownership program. Funds will be used for land acquisition and development, construction materials, labor and infrastructure.

“We are truly honored to be considered for this grant and sincerely appreciate OEC Foundation’s role in supporting our shared vision for vibrant, thriving communities,” said Elle Shroyer, VP of Donor and Community Engagement.

Cut It Forward received $5,000 for Curl Shop, a new initiative to bridge the gap in accessing culturally specific hair and skincare resources for foster and adopted children of color and their caregivers.

“Curl Shop empowers families to nurture their unique cultural identities while enhancing well-being and self-confidence,” explained Executive Director Angela Hein.

Individual applications included five medical requests for vision and dental care totaling $2,169, two apartment setups for clients leaving assisted living totaling $1,000, $250 for clothing needs and $2,000 for a family recovering from an apartment fire.

For those seeking assistance or wishing to apply for ORU grants, the applications are readily available at okcoop.org/oru. Individuals can contact Tory Tedder- Loffland at ORU@okcoop.org or (405) 217-6726 for further inquiries.

Applications received by March 18 will be reviewed at the April 4 meeting.

*CORRECTION: We incorrectly attributed a quote about South Central CASA of Oklahoma last month. While the quote is correct, it should be attributed to Sherri Marsico, who has served as executive director for two years. We apologize for the error.

Share this article

Beyond the Sale | OEC News

By placing an unwavering focus on service before sales, OEC Fiber is not just connecting businesses to the digital world but creating a blueprint for the future of member and subscriber service.

Read More »

The Power Behind Your Power | OEC News

Despite the many challenges, OEC’s lineworkers are committed to powering our local communities. During severe weather events that bring major power outages, lineworkers are among the first ones called.

Read More »

OEC Electric and Fiber Awarded Large Business of the Year | OEC News

In an impressive testament to its commitment to community and excellence, Oklahoma Electric Cooperative (OEC), along with our subsidiary OEC Fiber, was awarded the esteemed “Large Business of the Year” by the Norman Chamber of Commerce. The accolade was presented during a ceremony at the Embassy Suites in Norman, Oklahoma, on Feb. 1, highlighting our impact on the communities we serve and our unwavering dedication to core values.

Read More »
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The Good Kind of Audit | OEC News

Learn how to make your home an energy efficiency ace

Colder weather typically results in higher energy bills, and with winter still in swing, we’d like to remind you about a free co-op service that can help you boost efficiency and save money.

As your trusted energy partner, we believe savings and efficiency are within reach for everyone, and we want to help you get there. That’s why OEC offers free home energy audits.

An energy audit provides a holistic view of your home’s efficiency. Understanding how your home uses energy can help determine the best ways to adjust energy consumption, improve problem areas and ultimately keep more money in your wallet. An energy audit can also identify potential safety issues surrounding electrical wiring and HVAC systems, making your home safer. You could say this is a good kind of audit.

So how does it work? First, request the energy audit by completing the form on our website at okcoop.org/hecp/. The audit is conducted at your home by one of our trained and certified energy advisors.

WHAT TO EXPECT DURING THE AUDIT

The audit comprises three parts: evaluation, energy testing and recommendations.

First, our energy advisor conducts a walk-through of your home, examining energy use and identifying problem areas. The advisor will look at specific elements of your home impacting energy use, such as doors, windows, and insulation levels. The advisor will also examine major appliances, including your heating and cooling system and conduct a room-by-room assessment. During the assessment, the advisor will ask questions about your energy use habits and review past energy bills

In the testing phase, the advisor will evaluate the seal of your home by conducting a blower door test to identify the source of any air leaks or drafts. 

THE POWER TO SAVE IS IN YOUR HANDS

Finally, the advisor will provide you with a detailed evaluation. This is a written report with a description of your home, an analysis of your energy use, recommendations regarding energy consumption and steps you can take to improve efficiency and save money.

One of the greatest values of an energy audit is helping you understand how you use electricity and, more importantly, identifying ways to use it more efficiently.

Additionally, making improvements and upgrades based on the evaluation can increase your property value––all the more reason to schedule an audit for your home

Free energy audits are just one of the many perks of your co-op membership, so we hope you’ll take advantage of this valuable service. If you’re looking for more ways to save, check out our additional efficiency offerings, such as energy efficiency rebates, time-of-use rate, energy savings guide and more. These programs and services are designed with OEC members in mind, putting the power to save in your hands.

Beyond the Sale | OEC News

By placing an unwavering focus on service before sales, OEC Fiber is not just connecting businesses to the digital world but creating a blueprint for the future of member and subscriber service.

Read More »

The Power Behind Your Power | OEC News

Despite the many challenges, OEC’s lineworkers are committed to powering our local communities. During severe weather events that bring major power outages, lineworkers are among the first ones called.

Read More »

OEC Electric and Fiber Awarded Large Business of the Year | OEC News

In an impressive testament to its commitment to community and excellence, Oklahoma Electric Cooperative (OEC), along with our subsidiary OEC Fiber, was awarded the esteemed “Large Business of the Year” by the Norman Chamber of Commerce. The accolade was presented during a ceremony at the Embassy Suites in Norman, Oklahoma, on Feb. 1, highlighting our impact on the communities we serve and our unwavering dedication to core values.

Read More »

Right Tree, Right Place | OEC News

Discover the importance of proper tree planting for safety and energy savings

Planting the right tree in the right place can significantly impact homeowners’ energy savings. Studies have shown that a single tree, when planted in the proper location, can save up to 20% on energy costs. This means that not only do trees provide aesthetic benefits to our communities, but they also have a tangible impact on our wallets and the environment.

However, planting is easier said than done. Considering factors such as proximity to power lines or the potential for root damage to nearby structures is critical to your trees’ health and safety. For tips on planting your trees in the right place, go to link.okcoop.org/treeplantingguide

As a cooperative committed to providing safe and reliable energy to our members, OEC recognizes the importance of proper vegetation management practices. We have two arborists on staff to assess the health and safety of trees near power lines, and we use herbicides to control the growth of trees and other vegetation that could interfere with power lines. This not only helps to prevent power outages and ensure public safety, but it also helps to promote the growth of healthy, energy-saving trees in the right places.

By working to maintain a clear right-of-way for power lines, we are also promoting the planting of new trees in in appropriate locations through our annual Energy-Saving Trees giveaway. This not only helps to prevent the need for costly and potentially dangerous pruning or removal of trees in the future, but it also maximizes the energy-saving benefits of trees for homeowners. Look for more information about the Energy-Saving Trees giveway in next month’s issue.

Planting the right tree in the right place is essential for maximizing trees’ energy-saving benefits. We play a vital role in promoting proper vegetation management practices to ensure trees are planted and maintained in appropriate locations. By working together to promote healthy trees and a healthy environment, we can all benefit from the many benefits trees provide. Happy planting!

Beyond the Sale | OEC News

By placing an unwavering focus on service before sales, OEC Fiber is not just connecting businesses to the digital world but creating a blueprint for the future of member and subscriber service.

Read More »

The Power Behind Your Power | OEC News

Despite the many challenges, OEC’s lineworkers are committed to powering our local communities. During severe weather events that bring major power outages, lineworkers are among the first ones called.

Read More »

OEC Electric and Fiber Awarded Large Business of the Year | OEC News

In an impressive testament to its commitment to community and excellence, Oklahoma Electric Cooperative (OEC), along with our subsidiary OEC Fiber, was awarded the esteemed “Large Business of the Year” by the Norman Chamber of Commerce. The accolade was presented during a ceremony at the Embassy Suites in Norman, Oklahoma, on Feb. 1, highlighting our impact on the communities we serve and our unwavering dedication to core values.

Read More »

From the Top — March 2024 | OEC News

Franchise agreements: What it means for OEC and Norman residents

Members in Norman may have recently seen a lot of information about Oklahoma Gas and Electric’s (OG&E) upcoming franchise agreement election on March 5. Because both OEC and OG&E provide electric service in Norman, you may wonder how this will impact OEC. Hopefully, I can shed a little light on the matter.

If you’re wondering what exactly a franchise agreement is, you’re not alone. A simplified definition is that a franchise is an agreement between a city (through a vote of the people) and a utility. The agreement gives a utility the right to use the city’s public rights-of-way to provide electric service in exchange for a franchise fee collected by the utility and paid to the city. In OG&E’s case, the vote is to extend the existing decades-long franchise agreement for another 25 years — the maximum allowed by the Oklahoma Constitution.

How does this affect OEC? Neither OEC as a cooperative nor our members are directly involved or meaningfully impacted by the outcome of the vote. It will not change where OEC provides service within the city of Norman today or in the future. It will not change anyone’s electric provider— those receiving electricity from OEC today will remain OEC members, and the same for OG&E. We do, however, have an interest in the outcome through OEC’s ability to coordinate and work beside OG&E throughout the city of Norman.

As interested observers, OEC’s official stance is neutral, however, if I personally had a vote (in full disclosure, I do not), I would vote “yes” and I hope it passes.

Two of the seven cooperative principles are Cooperation Among Cooperatives and Concern for Community. While OG&E is not a cooperative, we must coordinate with them and other providers across our service area in line maintenance and outage restoration efforts, ensuring we operate safely and efficiently within the cities we serve. I believe communities are strongest when all parties work together to provide all the essential services everyone needs to thrive.

Beyond the Sale | OEC News

By placing an unwavering focus on service before sales, OEC Fiber is not just connecting businesses to the digital world but creating a blueprint for the future of member and subscriber service.

Read More »

The Power Behind Your Power | OEC News

Despite the many challenges, OEC’s lineworkers are committed to powering our local communities. During severe weather events that bring major power outages, lineworkers are among the first ones called.

Read More »

OEC Electric and Fiber Awarded Large Business of the Year | OEC News

In an impressive testament to its commitment to community and excellence, Oklahoma Electric Cooperative (OEC), along with our subsidiary OEC Fiber, was awarded the esteemed “Large Business of the Year” by the Norman Chamber of Commerce. The accolade was presented during a ceremony at the Embassy Suites in Norman, Oklahoma, on Feb. 1, highlighting our impact on the communities we serve and our unwavering dedication to core values.

Read More »

Reliability: The Impacts of Extreme Winter Weather | OEC News

Tracing the journey of electricity from generation to your home through the electric grid

When outdoor temperatures drop, our electricity use increases. That’s because we’re doing more activities inside, and our heating systems are running longer and more often to counteract colder outdoor temperatures. Factor in that we all tend to use electricity at the same times—in the morning and early evenings—and that equals a lot of strain on our electric grid.

At OEC, we work closely with our local generation and transmission (G&T) cooperative, Western Farmers Electric Cooperative, in resource and infrastructure planning to ensure you have the power you need whenever you flip a switch, but the electric grid is much larger than your local co-op and G&T.

In winter months, when even more electricity is being used simultaneously across the country, it is possible for electricity demand to exceed supply, especially if an unexpected event like a sudden snow or ice storm or equipment malfunction occurs. If this happens, which is rare, the grid operator for our region of the country, the Southwest Power Pool, may call for rolling power outages to relieve pressure on the grid, and OEC will inform you about the situation.

OEC and our G&T take proactive steps to create a resilient portion of the grid and ensure electric reliability in extreme weather, including regular system maintenance, grid modernization efforts, and disaster response planning, but it takes everyone to keep the grid reliable.

To help keep the heat on for you, your family and neighbors, here are a few things you can do to relieve pressure on the grid (and save a little money along the way):

SELECT THE LOWEST COMFORTABLE THERMOSTAT SETTING AND TURN IT DOWN SEVERAL DEGREES WHENEVER POSSIBLE.

Pro tip: Your heating system run longer to make up the difference between the thermostat temp and the outdoor temp. Seal air leaks around windows and exterior doors with caulk and weatherstripping. Air leaks and drafts force your heating system to work harder than necessary.

STAGGER YOUR USE OF MAJOR APPLIANCES SUCH AS DISHWASHERS, OVENS AND DRYERS.

Pro tip: Start the dishwasher before you go to bed and use smaller countertop appliances like slow cookers and air fryers to save energy.

ENSURE THAT YOUR HEATING SYSTEM IS OPTIMIZED FOR EFFICIENCY WITH REGULAR MAINTENANCE AND PROPER INSULATION.

Pro tip: Make sure your furnace filter isn’t clogged and dirty. Replace it as needed.

WHEN POSSIBLE, USE COLD WATER TO REDUCE WATER HEATING COSTS.

Pro tip: Setting your water heater thermostat to 120 degrees can help you save energy and reduce mineral buildup and corrosion in your water heater and pipes.

UNPLUG DEVICES WHEN NOT IN USE TO ELIMINATE UNNECESSARY ENERGY USE. EVEN WHEN TURNED OFF, ELECTRONICS IN STANDBY MODE CONSUME ENERGY.

Pro tip: Plug devices into a power strip so you can turn them all off at once with the push of a button. For a set-it-and-forget-it option, buy a smart plug to schedule usage times and turn all devices off with the press of a button.

As we face the challenges posed by winter weather, understanding its impact on energy demand is crucial for maintaining a reliable power supply. By adopting energy conservation practices during periods of extreme cold, not only can you save money on your electric bills, but you can also contribute to the resilience of the power grid, keeping our local community warm and connected. 

Share this article

Beyond the Sale | OEC News

By placing an unwavering focus on service before sales, OEC Fiber is not just connecting businesses to the digital world but creating a blueprint for the future of member and subscriber service.

Read More »

The Power Behind Your Power | OEC News

Despite the many challenges, OEC’s lineworkers are committed to powering our local communities. During severe weather events that bring major power outages, lineworkers are among the first ones called.

Read More »

OEC Electric and Fiber Awarded Large Business of the Year | OEC News

In an impressive testament to its commitment to community and excellence, Oklahoma Electric Cooperative (OEC), along with our subsidiary OEC Fiber, was awarded the esteemed “Large Business of the Year” by the Norman Chamber of Commerce. The accolade was presented during a ceremony at the Embassy Suites in Norman, Oklahoma, on Feb. 1, highlighting our impact on the communities we serve and our unwavering dedication to core values.

Read More »
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