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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

5 Ways To Improve Your Web Series Project Workflow When Working From Home

This article was published by Jeremy Campbell who's Founder and President of the collaborative freelancing website built specifically for video and film projects, Spidvid.

This post is inspired by Kayla Albert's post which she published on WorkAwesome, a blog I love to read! Since it was a popular post on WorkAwesome, I decided to apply it to the web series world and publish my own version here with the hope of helping anyone who reads it. If you have another productivity idea in addition to the ones listed below, then I invite you to add a comment with yours.

1. Routines are important - When I first started out working from my home office I was all over the place. I would try to do everything at once, multi tasking was my friend for the first few months. Then I started wearing down and felt frustrated that despite multi tasking, I wasn't really accomplishing as much as I felt I could. So then I focused on single tasking and that has worked great since. Have weekly and monthly routines, put what you want to accomplish on your planner and how long it takes so you always know what's going on. But don't get into a trap where doing the same thing week in and week out you don't get the results you want. Just because there's a task on your weekly schedule doesn't mean you can't remove it and put something else there instead. Put tasks into your routine that helps you reach your core short term and long term goals.

If you don't feel like doing something on any given day, then don't stress yourself out if you don't do that task. If you need some air then go for a walk, have a nap if you're burnt out, or watch last night's PVR'd episode of Family Guy. Web series development can be a very stressful, but having a structured routine with room for flexibility will make you feel more in control of your and your project's fate.

2. Take breaks - As briefly mentioned above, getting exercise and resting your mind is a good thing for your productivity and your sanity. I've heard that during the work day an average person is the most tired between 3-5pm, this certainly applies to myself.

9-5 employees get breaks throughout the day, and you need them to. You don't have to take a break every couple hours, just figure out if working 4 hours straight then taking a 30 minute break is better for you than taking a 15 minute break every 2 hours for example. When you're in the zone take advantage of those times no matter what, because that's where the majority of your daily productivity will come from. This often happens when editing a video, there's a reason that some people call their area of post production the "editing cave."

3. Set your own schedule - Are you one of those people who loves to work late into the night then sleep until noon the next day and do it all over again? When you work from home that's just fine because you have the flexibility to do so. It can be tricky if your significant other works a "normal" 9-5 job, but you can make it work. Just don't set everything in stone and allow for wiggle room for such things like if your boyfriend or girlfriend wants to watch a newly released film on Netflix. You set your schedule, you have your daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly goals, so as long as you get them done on time it's all good. You own your schedule, don't let it own you.

4. Get out and about - Taking in different sights and sounds will keep your mind sharp, and keep you connected to the human race. Get out of the home studio, meet with mentors and fellow producers in person, and keep the positive vibes flowing. Who knows, the concept for your next web series script could come while biking through a park and seeing an epic double rainbow!

5. Shut it down after work - I used to constantly think about my work projects while I was on my personal time, and that got me in trouble many times with my girlfriend who would say I wasn't listening to her. I didn't want to admit it to her, but she was right. I have fortunately learned to unplug when the focus isn't on building my company and working on my video projects. I will actually get ideas when I'm unplugged because stuff in my personal life will trigger ah ha moments for my professional life. It's amazing how that works, it almost makes you feel like your personal and professional lives are perfectly aligned and intrinsically connected.

Work smart, not necessarily hard and you can increase your productively immensely, and better enjoy your life away from work. Note: Even if you have a full time job outside of the production industry and only work on web series projects during evenings and on weekends these tips still apply, but you will have to manage your limited time very effectively to succeed.

How do you increase your productivity when working from home? Add your idea(s) below if you have something to share.

1 comment:

  1. Live on the Web!

    People often forget that the Web is a medium. It is not only where we express our self; it is where we socialize. This is vital when it comes to marketing a series because the more a Web series exploits the Web as a medium the more likely it is to succeed. The more you socialize on the Web the more you will understand the medium, how to write for it, how to target specific audiences, how to plug into specific communities. This may not seem like productivity per see but it 100 percent is.

    What is important here is not to limited your self to a select group of people interested in Web series but to deeply embed yourself, your crew and your cast in the community you want to watch your Web series. If you do not show and interest in them and what they do on the Web, they are probably not going to care about what you create on the Web and they will certainly not help you spread it organically.

    So in terms of productivity, time spend exploring and experimenting on the Web can pay heavy dividends. And, you never know who you will meet. Sometimes the most enlightening conversations can be with a new person you meet on the Web. And don't forget, they might be on a different continent and might not even speak the same language, so remember to keep your options open to the Wide expanse of the Web.

    Happy Web exploring!


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