How to Roll Multiple Projects in Multiple Companies

Posted by on 12th May 2015

If you are like me, you've got more than one thing cooking. I'm always involved in multiple projects. Especially now as my newer(ish) role as producer, I'm getting involved with existing projects, and I get to see how other folks decided to plan and produce a show. That's common in the creative industry, and for the past two years I've come up with a system that works so incredibly well that I want to share it with you.

One of the main issues is that I am an external video guy. I'm becoming involved with new projects and companies to see "their box from the inside". Maybe you recall the saying:

think outside the box

That's one of the reasons folks book someone for an explainer video. They need someone that is on the outside and communicates from a neutral outside standpoint why customers would buy a certain product. That is also the reason why I chose to have the saying:

We think outside your box

On the main page on zCasting 3000.

The only problem? It's not that easy for us to think outside someone else's box! Because when we get to know a different company, and their product, we know nothing about it. So we need to get in the box, check out every detail from the inside, only to be able to, then, step outside, and look it at it from that angle.

The problem? Every company rolls their own box! There's always some sort of communication tool. There's always something to coordinate tasks. There's something for contacts, for email, etc. That is all fine and dandy. As a temporary coworker though, I always have to use whatever they use. That's always a lot of hassle but it's not that bad either.

Many many years ago, some folks had the idea of a SSB -- a site-specific browser. On the Mac there is Fluid. Mozilla used to make Prism. There were others too, but to tell you the gist. These are apps that build apps that are only allowed to open one or multiple websites when launched. Fluid for instance can also have tabs (and browsers can have their own cookie storage which is nice for various security related reasons). The way I use Fluid is to make an app called after the name, project, company, partner, that I'm working with. And their logo as icon. These contained apps have the tabs configured and open to only interact with that company's websites and services. This way, at the end of a day, you can simply close the browser, and you're offline. Back in the office the next day? Open the SSB and continue to work!

Just is to make it super-clear. The way I use SSB's is like so:

Company A uses Slack, Trello, and Facebook. The SSB has three tabs: Slack, Trello, and Facebook. Dead simple.

The only downside is that Fluid is outdated. Chrome can build an SSB, but it's not so comfortable. Also newer, and more modern, implementations (using node) are not so comfortable for novice computer users.

Take your pick!