The winds of change are blowing a gale through the electrical utility industry. While some utility executives are promoting the coming changes as an unprecedented opportunity, this enthusiasm hasn't gripped utilities as a whole. Media coverage, labor leader and utility employee comments paint a picture of an industry beset with fear and uncertainty. The adjective "secure," which historically described careers and investments in electric utilities, has been dropped from the industry lexicon. In spite of a pool of conflicting emotions, utilities need to respond quickly and effectively as events threaten to overtake them.

The Washington International Energy Group’s 1997 Electric Industry Outlook reports that 86% of electric industry executives believe customer choice of supplier is inevitable. "Loss of customers" has emerged as the m ost important industry issue...(Read more...)