September 26, 2023

3 Concepts to Master for Superior Organization Skills in the Production World

Anyone who’s anyone in the production world knows that if you’re going to have even an ounce of success, you must be organized. Every single production professional we’ve interviewed has mentioned it.

There are dozens (if not hundreds) of articles about it.

But what does it mean to be “organized”? How can you build your organizational skills when your job is already so demanding and fast-paced?

Organizational skills are the foundation of a successful production career – if you cannot retrieve, recall, or locate specific information at a specific moment, they will find someone else who can!

1. Systems: Building a Solid Foundation

Efficient systems are the backbone of effective organization. They provide structure, consistency, and clarity, enabling production professionals to smoothly navigate the complexities of their roles.

Use the same master folder templates for each show

By maintaining a standardized structure, you can easily locate and access all relevant files related to a specific season. This approach ensures that no crucial information or documentation is lost, saving time and reducing the risk of errors.

Make sure everything is alphabetized

Your filing system can make a substantial difference in organizing the heaps of paperwork creating during physical production.

This simple yet powerful approach eliminates the frustration of searching through chaotic file structures, leading to enhanced productivity and smoother operations.

Bonus tip: communicate these organizational structures to your crew and PAs

If people know systems of your production office, they can proactively submit pre-organized documentation to you. At least...that’s the hope!

2. Checklists: Ensuring Comprehensive Oversight

When you’re operating at the speed of entertainment (which is scientifically only a few orders of magnitudes below the speed of light), it's easy for tasks, deadlines, and important details to slip through the cracks.

Effective use of checklists can mitigate this risk and help production professionals stay on top of their responsibilities.

One of the most important aspects of exceptional organization is following up – on everything.

Besides creating detailed checklists for traditional production stages (pre-production, filming, post, etc) you should create checklists based on reoccurring incidents that frequently occur.

Some ideas:

The Daily FAQ

Create a list of questions (or send them to a PA) you’re asked during the day but can’t answer in the moment. Spend 15 minutes at the end of the day delegating, researching or responding to those questions.

Daily Incident Log

Keep a log of any recurring incidents that happen on set or during production, such as equipment malfunctions, scheduling conflicts, or talent issues. This log will help you identify patterns and develop proactive solutions to prevent these incidents from happening in the future.

Emergency Response Checklist

Develop a comprehensive checklist outlining the steps to be taken in case of emergencies on set, such as injuries, accidents, or natural disasters. Include contact information for emergency services, first aid procedures, and evacuation protocols. Regularly review and update this checklist with input from safety experts.

Develop a system for tracking and managing production equipment

Create a checklist to ensure that all required equipment is available and in working order before each production day. Include items such as cameras, lighting equipment, sound gear, and any specialized equipment specific to the production. Regularly update the checklist to reflect any changes or additions to the equipment inventory.

By following these checklists diligently, professionals can maintain a comprehensive overview of their responsibilities and ensure nothing slips through the cracks.

Additionally, utilizing digital task management tools, such as project management software or productivity apps, can further enhance the effectiveness of checklists. These tools offer features like reminders, progress tracking, and collaboration, empowering professionals to manage their tasks more efficiently and collaborate seamlessly with their teams. Here at Revolution, we’re partial to ProCal for seamlessly organizing different versions of production calendars across various teams.

3. Email Management

If you’re sticking to traditional email, here are some tips and tricks you could use to automate many tasks and reduce the need for a checklist in the first place:

Email Filters

Set up filters or rules to automatically sort incoming emails based on specific criteria. For example, you can filter emails containing keywords like "catering,” “menu,” “allergies” to be tagged as “Catering” so you know to review those messages with the catering team.

Email Forwarding

Configure email forwarding rules to automatically forward emails to specific individuals or departments based on criteria such as subject, sender, or keywords. This can help delegate tasks or route emails to the appropriate team members without manual intervention.


Set up automated responses or out-of-office messages to inform senders about your availability or provide alternative contacts during your absence. This helps manage expectations and reduces the need for immediate responses.

Email Templates

Create email templates for frequently sent messages or responses. This can save time and ensure consistency when replying to common inquiries or providing standard information.

In conclusion, embracing a well-organized approach in the fast-paced world of production can lead to remarkable results for you, your team, and your entire production. Armed with these practical strategies, watch the tangible impact it has on your production – and career prospects!

The Revolution Team

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