Friday, 20 August 2010

Customer Service ... can I help you?

This week our guest blogger is Al Muirden, one of our favourite sound editors.

This week, I thought I’d briefly talk about something that happens to us all at some point in our lives - being a customer!

I’m currently wrapping up my latest audio book edit which is a heist tale set (largely) in France and happens to have been produced by Ali Muirden and narrated by Lorelei King - the perfect combination!

As I worked through it, I had a weird feeling about customer service as my mind occasionally wandered when I took a break from my laptop. Let me try to put into words:

This particular book is not actually for Creative Content, but happens to be for another publisher that Ali and Lorelei are doing some work for - and I had this thought that there is a chain, of people involved in the production of this title, which ultimately will end up in the purchaser’s hands (or ears, as an audio download!) - and all of us are working for this “customer” whether we are the last link in the chain, or the first.

I am, I suppose, towards the end of the chain in making the recording ready for the purchaser to buy - but I am also working for the other people in the chain of production, all of whom really are MY customers in this context.

There is Ali as producer - she has put in a great deal of work behind the scenes in getting this off the ground including securing Lorelei in this case, as narrator, so I have a big responsibility to Ali to get my part right.

Then I thought about Lorelei’s performance - she is also a “customer” of mine as she has put in a stellar performance (as always) and I owe it to her to make the final product as good as I can in the time that I have.

Add to Ali and Lorelei’s efforts the studio that the book was recorded at and the engineer who twiddled the knobs and clicked the mouse - again I need to make HIS part in getting a quality recording sound as good as I can. The writer (and in some cases the abridger) to do justice to THEIR efforts and finally the publisher who is top of the tree, alongside the purchaser.

Anyway, it’s interesting to me to consider all of the people involved in the process as “customers” – not just the end consumer - and for me to do the best job I can for all of them … because, as my customers, they are always RIGHT - right! - Al Muirden

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