Crew for the Photoshoot Day
So let's talk about staffing and the day before prep. Overstaff the heck out of it. A lot. And a lot of you that are gonna start going into volume work, as you're starting to expand, maybe you're just doing a couple of high school teams, and you haven't done a big, big, big job. Or maybe you do these big big jobs. And the easy thing to look at is your expenses, how to cut costs, is to look at your labor. And so I overstaff knowing that its going to cost me a lot of money that I might be able to save by bringing less people. I spend a ton more on my labor than I would have to. But under staffing is what got us that big job from Voldemort we talked about earlier. They brought seven, we brought 26. We crushed it, they didn't. Under staffing is... Over staffing allows us flexibility. I've had one time ever, have I had someone that was contracted to work with us not show up. And that day three people didn't show up. Three of my contract people didn't show up. We had enough guys to get the j...
ob done. Now we worked a lot harder than we were supposed to. It was a lot more work than we had planned on, but we were overstaffed and in a position where by them not being there, we were not completely worked over. So spend the money. Bring in a lot of people. And then set up your schedule to give yourself way more time than you need. Start having one of your overstaffed employees track how long its taking a team to go through. Pay attention, is everyone getting through on time. How long is this process taking? Then, refine. Then, refine. Do with a few less the next year. Do with a few less. Add a few more cameras. That's the way that you're really gonna find the sweet spot. And this can be really tricky because sometimes... our baseball contracts, its always like 100%. We have 100% of the team show up for baseball. Everybody shows up. Soccer, especially older kids, I have no idea whose gonna show up. Its way, way, way more hit or miss. We never know. So there's also issues where if you're trying to cut it really thin, but then everybody shows up, are you in trouble? Have it, know that you're gonna have that cushion. I've a lot of friends. I hear you, I have a couple. But I have a lot of photographer friends in my market. And we pay 25 bucks an hour, they come out, they shoot. They use my gear, my lighting, my memory cards, my everything. They bring in nothing except for a smile, a pair of khakis, and a white shirt without a logo on it. That's what they bring. 25 bucks an hour I know might not seem like a ton of money. Its way over paying compared to what my competitors pay for people to do this. And it is not, although I am hiring real photographers. Very, very talented photographers. It's not a photography job, its a picture taker job. Like its one pose. It's the pose I want, its the lighting I want, its the settings I put on your camera. We're not putting any wear and tear on your stuff. So its a fair wage. So they come in, they get 25 bucks an hour, and then we have assistants with each one of our photographers. They get 15 bucks an hour. Assistants might be photographers that just wanna hang out, but don't actually wanna shoot, and they'll work for a lesser rate. We bring in high school kids. I bring in seniors that we've worked with, that we just like. My neighbors. We'll just bring in kids. Its cool. Sometimes we've reached out to sports leagues and we'll say to the high school, do you have a bunch of baseball kids that wanna make some money on Saturday? So that's another avenue. And then we go over, as soon as they come into work, every single time, we have a mini training session. This is my, you guys are all gonna get my welcome to work training session. This is how it goes. Hi guys! I'm super excited you're here today. We just gotta get through this, and then we're going to happy hour. So lets talk about a few expectations. One, the cameras are set up the exact way I want them. If you think there's something wrong with your exposure, please find me and ask me. You do not have permission to change any of the settings on your camera. In case you're confused, I've taped the settings on your camera what they should be. If that is not your settings, come and talk to me. Okay? Two: remember, we are here with a lot of kids. And although I might drop an F-bomb from time to time, we are on our p's and q's and we do not cuss around other peoples' kids. Okay? Cool. These are the poses, and I'll walk around and show you the poses. Okay, and then I will say, poster pose it. Because they get to do their banner shot. Banner shots we will allow the kids more freedom in their posing. So they can pick their own pose. Certain things don't work. They can't have guns. Okay, that doesn't work. I have to be able to see their face. So this, doesn't work. Okay, these are the things that we are going to avoid. If you have a kid dabbing in the photo, I'm going to loose my mind. Okay, and lastly, these are peoples' kids. We don't touch other peoples' kids. If you didn't make it, you don't touch it. Period. Ever. And that's a really big thing that I drive home. We don't touch other peoples' kids. I had a guy that came out to work for me one time, great guy, he's done work for me before and after. Lots of work, he's great. We had a session where a girl's sports bra was showing. And he tugged it up. And I got a call from a mom about it. Its a stupid, innocent thing. Wasn't anything dirty, wasn't anything lewd, wasn't anything aggressive. It was a simple tweak that was innocent. I got a phone call over that. That's ridiculous. That I could loose a massive account for something as innocent as that. So we don't touch kids. Ever. The kid needs to get touched, you get the coach on it. Alright? That's a big, big, big one. Yep, so we don't touch kids, we don't touch lights, we don't touch settings. It's exactly how I want it. And if you don't like my lighting, that's cool. I appreciate your opinion. We can talk about that later, But this is how its set up for today. This is how we're gonna do it.