We recently celebrated five years in business, which was marked with a rebranding and a lot of thoughtful introspection — namely, revisiting and expanding Grey House’s Core Values. Over the course of the next several months, we’ll be sharing our Core Values in detail on the blog, to offer a glimpse of how #TeamGreyHouse operates.
Especially given how busy we are, it would be easy to fall into the “we’re too busy” routine, e.g., “This is how we did it before,” or, “We don’t have time to think about another approach.” To get stuck in a rhythm of only changing things when they are too broken to keep going. But, we believe so much in growth and development. Of ourselves, our team and our process. One of the ways we grow our process is by working with specialized business consultants. In the last eight months we’ve undergone some exciting changes. It all began when we hired The Crew Consultants to help us implement a customer relationship management (CRM) system and some smart automations. We so enjoyed working with Crew Consultant’s founder Colleen Pratt Sarihan on the CRM side, we knew she’d be a great resource again as we prepared to completely revamp our financial systems — to help me speak like a CEO in terms of our profit and loss, track more detail in our revenue streams, maximize ROI, and so forth. We also worked with Kilness & Co this spring as they took us through a 6 week workshop called Blueprint: which helped me draw a roadmap to where I want to take Grey House in the next five years. Finally, I’m currently learning our new project management system which helps streamline production workflow, automation, and other aspects of our resources, including the structure of our bid-to-wrap production timelines and to-dos. The best part, it can scale with the company, so that no matter which member of #TeamGreyHouse you’re working with, we’ll all have the same toolbox.
We’re constantly looking to stay ahead of potential problems and curveballs. So even if we’re saying to a client, “Here’s our approach to this production,” we’re also thinking about additional scenarios just in case Plan A winds up not being the best solution as the project unfolds. If, for instance, a stylist suddenly needs X, I can pivot and move Y — be that money, time, or physical help in terms of bodies on set — because I’ve already explored the alternatives. It’s really all about thinking quickly on your feet. I also really believe in not just thinking of a quick solution when things go wrong, but really inspecting the problem and coming up with the best solution. Maybe we could (easily) fix it with option A, but I want to make sure I’ve also done my due diligence to consider options B and C (and G!) before I commit to a new plan.
This last one sounds like a no-brainer, but it’s so important. When we know we need to be out of a location by a certain time, I always make sure to communicate with the various teams when they’ll need to start wrapping up and packing out. Most of the time, we’re working with a crew that’s able to do this simultaneously with the shoot. But sometimes, having conversations in advance paints a different reality: they’re going to need 40 minutes instead of 20 because an intricate lighting set up, or maybe my PAs can’t break down an area because they would have to walk through the shooting location (or we have sound rolling), or maybe a stylist needs to leave half the wardrobe behind for costume changes. No matter the scenario, I always approach the crew ahead of time to make sure we’re all on the same page.