Producer/Director - BBC
What you do in the job?
A Producer/Director in Network Television (Nationwide terrestrial programmes) takes an idea and delivers the programme, usually leading a team of people, and working to a series producer.
The following comes from a BBC job description - and indicates the tough demands for the position of PD on a network television programme. Communications skills, as we emphasise on StartinTV, are key... and this is a valuable summary.
What qualities are required?
Aim of the Job
To contribute to the output of General Factual by working as part of a production team and taking responsibility for specific programmes or sections of programmes.
Working closely with the Editor/Series Producer, the producer is responsible for delivering programmes or films on time, to budget and to the highest quality.
1. Identify and select stories for films and programmes in a way which demonstrates strong journalistic skills and editorial judgement.
2. To creatively define the mood and personality of a film, carefully crafting stories that will resonate with a wider audience.
3. Visually drive the films, both in terms of style and structure, encouraging innovation but always working within BBC editorial guidelines
4. Lead and motivate Assistant Producers and Researchers, ensuring they have clear and realistic objectives, consistent with BBC Values. Give clear briefings, monitor performance, give constructive feedback, lead by example and treat team with consideration despite pressure of deadlines
5. Work closely with presenters where appropriate, ensuring they are properly briefed, and involving them in the editorial process, including scripting shows.
6. Working closely with the production manager, ensure every aspect of production is carefully planned so that filming and editing schedules ensure maximum productivity and programmes come in on budget.
Required Skills and Experience
1. Wide ranging knowledge of television production processes and a track record of creative programming,
2. including film making, and experience of helping to shape other peoples' films in editing. Experience of working on popular and primetime shows is essential.
3. Substantial experience of self-shooting desirable, making 30 minute programmes and working with a range of DV cameras. A technical and editorial understanding of lighting and sound issues would be useful.
4. Effective negotiating and management skills; experience of leading and motivating teams, and encouraging and developing production staff.
5. Evidence of interpersonal and communication skills strong enough to establish credibility with colleagues and top flight presenters and to foster strong working relationships with a wide range of people inside and outside the BBC.
6. Enough resilience and stamina to sustain performance when under pressure. Ability to cope with a huge volume of programme material, all of which must be thoroughly researched and investigated to ensure absolute accuracy and good judgement. Proven qualities of adaptability and flexibility in coping with rapidly changing circumstances and ability to prioritise and exercise excellent editorial judgement as circumstances change.
7. Ability to generate creative ideas and to think strategically about new programme ideas and an innovative approach to programme making. Awareness of popular factual output across all channels.
8. Experience of reconciling artistic aspiration with financial constraint, of planning and revising production budgets and schedules and delivering programmes on time and to budget.
9. Thorough knowledge of BBC Producer's Guidelines, production hazards and Health & Safety regulations and legal issues relating to investigative journalism.
10. Able to direct to a high standard and fast turnaround.
11. Excellent scripting and narrative skills.
Imagination & Creative Thinking
Demonstrates original and imaginative ideas.
Is able to transform original or unusual ideas/impulses into practical reality.
Can look at existing situations and problems in novel ways and come up with innovative solutions.
Communicates ideas and information clearly and concisely.
Listens to, understands and interprets information/instructions correctly.
Able to get ones message clearly understood by adopting a range of styles, tools and techniques appropriate to the audience and the nature of the information.
Can identify key influencers in the organisation.
Can adopt a range of strategies and styles of influencing depending on circumstances.
Constantly develops and expands own sources of influence.
Anticipates and provides sound arguments to support ideas/actions/initiative.
Managing relationships and Team working
Has an ability to establish rapport quickly and effectively with new people/contacts.
Takes care to maintain and develop existing relationships.
Works harmoniously with a wide range of people and deals sensitively with contributors as well as with colleagues.
Understands the demands and pressures of others.
Give staff a clear sense of direction and purpose.
Creates a sense of responsibility amongst staff.
Creates and environment in which people support each other.
Gathers relevant information from a range of sources.
Demonstrates a full understanding and knowledge of sources and research methodology.
Sifts information and selects what is significant.
Translates analysis into practical action plans.
Thinks clearly and decisively, particularly when faced with unexpected problems.
Has confidence on own judgement whilst knowing when to refer to a more senior level
Logically weighs up factors in order to make rational decisions;
Maintains responsibility for own decisions.
Planning & organising
Prioritises and plans activities taking into account all relevant issues such as deadlines, staffing and resources.
Is able to integrate all known factors into the planning process.
Can maintain personal effectiveness by managing own emotions in the face of pressure, set backs or when dealing with provocative situations.
Can demonstrate an approach to work that is characterised by commitment, motivation and energy.
How you start and where you can go with it?
A Producer/Director may move on to Series Producing, and Executive Producing, or may move on to more interesting and demanding programmes as a PD.