Transformation in the meaning of Collaboration
Updated: Nov 22, 2020
In one of my earlier blog posts, I mentioned why filmmaking is considered a collaborative art form. By paying attention to the rolling credits at the end of a feature film, we will realize that for a project to come together, it isn't just one person doing everything. It is a collection of people coming together to create a successful film. The film industry, just like every other industry is experiencing a revolutionary transformation to the meaning of collaboration. Both in the sense of the tools being utilized and the workers using those tools. There are many software solutions that filmmakers adopt to bring their film to life. There are apps for screenwriting, budgeting, and editing and to adapt with current times an app to indicate if you are COVID positive or not. However, these are often standalone apps and are not considered social technologies (if you are not sure what a social technology is, I will get to that in a minute) as they don't facilitate communications amongst its users.
The crew in a typical film production are usually made up of workers from different generations (Boomers, Gen X, Millennials, Gen Zs) However, without a doubt, the Millennials are dictating how work is and should be conducted. It is expected as they are the latest and largest generation entering the workforce in North America(1*). In the film industry, though there is a sentimental attachment to the "old school" way of doing things, technology is very much in the foremind. The Millennials have taken the onus to be the guardian of the digital revolution. They have grown accustomed to having tech in their day to day which includes virtually all aspects of their work, routines that the presence/absence of state-of-the-art technology at a place of work significantly influences their decision to take a job. Millennials continue to exert more of a profound influence on the size and shape of the workforce, businesses must remain committed to adapting their values, philosophies, and operations to the unique needs, expectations, and skills of this generation.
Which social technologies being utilized? In the past few years, there have been immense technological advancements in Internet-based social interactions that have ushered in revolutionary changes to the ways in which modern employees work together and collaborate. It is undoubtedly the arrival of cloud-based applications and platforms that represents the most defining feature of workplace collaboration in the 21st century. These new technologies provided workers with previously unheard-of freedom to work anywhere, any time, and with anybody.
Producers must quickly realize that collaboration is being driven by the increasingly frequent and sophisticated use of these advanced social technologies amongst its crew. They prefer more often than not social methods of communication(messaging apps) than on traditional methods of interaction (emails) in their work(2*)
The widespread reliance on the use of standalone apps, resulting in the dreaded “silo effect” means that many productions are failing to realize the true potential associated with enhanced collaboration. Fully integrated social technologies, which allow businesses to engage in embedded collaboration (3*), represent the solution to this “silo effect” which is currently preventing the next evolutionary transformation in film production.
Yes, a Production Unit Manager may say that they are using Google Docs, Slack or Zoom as a false notion of open collaboration amongst its crew. They certainly have the problem that is they are designed to still be standalone apps thus preventing genuinely seamless integration between different programs and platforms. Requiring you to open several applications at one time to be communicating effectively.
For example, a director will be using one system for the script rewrites with the Screenwriter, one to coordinate with her DP on the shortlist, and another with her Producer on which item from the budget to remove and enabling a car chase scene."
The Martini (Try it. It's Free) is filmmaking software whose goal is to be the solution, fixing the work processes and app into one. It will eliminate unnecessary interruptions and remove the efficiency-killing friction that exists between standalone products, allowing you to use your personal devices and preferred pieces of software without experiencing a drop in performance. Increasing the use of such freedom-enhancing technologies, with their capacity for real-time communication and cooperation, seems to be changing the nature of work for the better (4*), making it more collaborative, streamlined, and efficient. The goal is to encourage more communication and self-organization within the team.