It happened. Everything that could possibly go wrong flew down the abyss of sh***y quality, stress, panic and useless rounds of emails.
I messed up the entire project, what am I supposed to do?
Everytime a huge issue arises from a project I work on, I have the incredible skill of being the comforting, loving professional with high problem-solving skills you’d love to have by your side in these situations. Sometimes this skill crashes, freezes and I simply panic.
What is and what should never be
As a former project manager with a possible OCD diagnosis, I hate intermediates.
No control = no responsibilities, though.
A simple subtitling project turned out to be a reenactment of Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom.
Basically, every single step of the process was a mistake. The whole workflow was based on very fragile premises.
Btw, one thing the really puzzles me about AV workflow is: what is the matter with numbers? I mean, people, what’s wrong with following the numeric progression? Why do we work on episode 7, than go back to episode 2, than episode 4, 1, etc.? Don’t you think we’d love to have at least a remote hint of what the story is about? Anyway.
As the project went on, some alarming signals had risen but we all ignored them. As I have learnt a very specific lesson, this time, I want to share my thoughts here.
The materials: the client basically bombed me with templates, scripts, updates, videos, final cuts, revised templates, compared scripts, anything. ALL.NAMED.WITHOUT.ANY.SENSE. It has been a huge mistake not to take a deep breath, not to take the time to write a polite email, pretending to be a little stupid (better safe then sorry, though) and asking “Could you please lead us through this psychedelic trip of yours?”. What am I supposed to do with 7 (I mean: 7) templates of the same episode? Is there a Change List? Nope. We did the same job 7 times, because the video was completely changed from one template to the other, not to mention I didn’t receive the final final final version until the day I was supposed to deliver the project.
What have I learnt?