In-house corporate video production is like waste disposal in most cities. No one knows who’s running it and no one knows who’s making money from it. Very few know how it works and hardly anyone knows how to maximize it.
This is the most dangerous and depressing part of this business. I can take your money and we can both get a false sense of satisfaction when the project is over, but that won’t last long and maybe you won’t call back because you didn’t get the intended result. Or worse, any result at all.
I have discussed the failure of imagination previously, so I will guide you to the opposite end of the spectrum: When imagination staggers out on to the street and is drunk with invincibility and naivete. Oh, and a big fat budget. When scope creep turns to scope gallop and reality is wobbling off the sidewalk. Keeping it on track, on time and worthy of the effort is a feat in itself.
When you are brought on to a large creative project and the wheels start coming off due to too many cooks, inexperience, indecision, bad decisions, unclear expectations, totally unrealistic deadlines and when your client doesn’t know what they don’t know, you need to gently and persuasively guide your new friend to safety. Or, as I call it, “walkin’ your baby back home.”
This is by far the most critical skill set a producer can bring to the table. By gently guiding the collaboration with creative options and scenarios, by gaining consensus and at the same time not being obvious, your “baby” will arrive home safely. In the end, like anyone who’s had too much fun, they won’t always be aware of your creative influence. But that comes with the territory.
When you are the designated creative driver you can’t just walk into a board room and start shooting your trap off, you can’t inundate and confuse with all your worldly knowledge. You need a lot of emotional intelligence to enlighten and educate your well intentioned new friend.
If all goes well and you are able keep your designee out of oncoming traffic, home safe and finish the project, which usually comes together at the eleventh hour, you might get a message from the client that will close with “Thanks for your help” 🙂