“I want this done with excellence!”
Such a simple statement. It seems so easy. It’s heard a lot in the church technical world. It’s what we want to attain. But, many people misunderstand this statement because of the word “excellence”.
They use this word as a quality definition for how good or superior your mix should be. Many people attribute your mix quality to how much money you spend on gear. This is especially true in the broadcast audio world.
But the word “excellence” is much more than what you do or what type of gear you bought. Excellence is how you handle your craft. More specifically, the manner in how you do it. Excellence revolves not around having the best gear, but around your attitude. It’s doing your best with what you have while putting in place systems that help reduce and resolve past mistakes.
Before you can even approach the broadcast audio mix, as a leader, you need to understand how to achieve excellence. Here are a few key actions to help you achieve excellence.
1. Pour into People; Don’t Extract from Them
Knowing who your people are, how they tick and understanding their lane are key elements of excellence. Put into action systems that train, develop and care for your people. Create an atmosphere that is fun and not stressful. Don’t ask them to accomplish a task, but to fulfill a mission. At every step, create a place where they want to be, not a place where they have to be. A team environment is where we pour into our people.
2. Identify Talent
One of the main components of excellence is identifying talent. Step back and see your people from a talent perspective. Not everyone is created equal and not everyone can perform the same mission at the same level. Some have an amazing ear and a talent to mix, but just need training. Others may not have a talent to mix but have other talents that will help the team. Everyone has a talent and all of us have the ability to identify talent. Honing this skillset of identifying talent is a key to excellence.
3. Work with What You Have
Many churches that I visit say they can’t have a good broadcast mix because they don’t have a separate broadcast audio console. It’s true that having a separate console is very helpful, but you can achieve a better online mix with just a front of house console.
Here is one idea. Create a separate auxiliary/matrix that follows your current front of house mix while not affecting what you are doing in the room. By routing that separate mix to the online stream and adding audience mics to that mix only, you will immediately change your online experience without adding a ton of cost. The biggest game changer for the online experience is audience mics. Having a good mix is great, but without audience mics you lose the experience of the room.
Using an aux/matrix output is not the only low budget option. There are other tricks that can help you improve your online mix without spending a lot of money. One of them is to contact someone like myself to come and assess your workflow and suggest the most affordable options for your ministry. Of course, if you have the budget, adding a full and separate broadcast audio console will allow you to have the most control over your mix for the online audience. Doing this with excellence will require you to fall back on my points of pouring into people and identifying talent.
Helping churches understand how to pour into people, identify talent and work with what you have is my ministry. Find out how we can help you by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org or by going to digitalgreatcommission.org