My pet peeve – Venue Standard set ups

As a casual theatre tech around town. I sometimes turn up at a venue ready to to work with a client and suddenly hit a brick wall as the venue is not in its standard configuration. Now this is a right royal pain, as the client is expecting to start straight away on their event. Only problem is that you have to work your butt off trying to get it back to some sort of order so that their event can happen.  Now this is not always down to the previous tech that was using the venue, it might be management not budgeting time and money to make sure this happens. There are a multitude of reasons why this might happen, but the venue needs to make sure that it does not happen – especially if they state that there is a standard set up. The client upon reading this will expect this this when they walk in. There is nothing worse than a tech racing around re-focussing the rig. Or worse still trying to find equipment that is normally stored in one location but is suddenly not there. Now we should be totalled geared towards quality costumer service, so if the client arrives and the venue is not ready there is a real problem. As we are possibly the only contact point at that moment with the venue, you are going to cop the flack from not being ready. The pressure is going to be on you as the tech to race and get the place up to scratch. Now this could actually lead to other problems such as taking short cuts that could be a OH & S concern.

Now for the tech that does not often work in the venue these things can be more problematic.  Standard operating procedures and maps etc of where equipment is kept would make the job easier. A lot of venues often have re-occurring events that always require the same set up, so why not draw it up. Then anyone with some technical skill and knowledge can set the event up. Having mud maps ands standard procedures that are up to date will make everyone’s jobs easier. Plus if you have diagrams available, you can show these to prospective clients so they have an idea what is possible within the venue.

So it boils down to being organised and thinking about the customer at all times. The staff all need to communicate and always be aware of what the next event that is going to be in the venue  next. If everybody knows what is going on, they will be on the same page and the workplace will run more soothly.


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