Too Many Cooks? Keeping Your Video’s Team Small Off and On-Camera

December 8, 2015

You know the saying, “Too many cooks spoil the broth”? That expression closely parallels what it can be like working with some clients in video production. How can a client find the right balance in working with a video team without ‘overstaffing the kitchen’? Read on!


Whether it is a tool for the sales team, a product video or a promotional video, it is essential to gather ideas and input from various team members early in the research and scripting phase of the video. Those who deal directly with clients will know the most frequently asked questions and needs, and what features will most attract potential clients. So step 1 is to ask the team for their insights. The video producer will likely be at this meeting to hear directly from all the stakeholders, to glean key messages and concerns, and possibly brainstorm structural ideas and concepts.

All this will help the video producer to create a strong project brief or outline.


Now this is where it gets more delicate and diplomacy is needed. In order for the video production company to move forward and keep the project on message and on schedule, from here on there needs to be just one person, kind of a head chef, in charge from the client’s side. This ‘chef’ should be in tasked with organizing and relaying all the feedback to the producer. There might be 10 different opinions of what the script should say and do from the rest of the team, the sous-chefs, but this team leader needs to be able to decide which opinions take precedence to keep the video on message with the video producer.


At some companies there is the problem of no one wanting to go in front of the camera. Some people would rather call in a sick day than be in front of the lens, even if it’s talking about things they do every day and know deeply.

But an even tougher situation is when everyone feels they need to add their voice on camera to the video. Alternately, the department head may feel he or she should be included on camera, even when there might be a stronger representative lower down on the food chain.

So what’s the big deal about interviewing a few more people for the video? Why not slip in a few more voices and faces? It comes down to mathematics… If the final video will be 2 minutes or 120 seconds long, and 10 different team members want to be included speaking on-camera, that leaves a scant 10 seconds per person. And since few effective videos are wall-to-wall talking heads, you’re likely left with 8 seconds per person to express a key message.

For the audience, that may well appear as a dizzying turn-over of people. It also brings up a constant parade of name and title cards popping up on screen faster than they can read, and forgotten as soon as the next one fades on. More effective would be to find the small number of key speakers –be that two, three or four-who can best convey the message. Pick the passionate speakers, the ones who are the born storytellers and able to get the message across to the lay-person.

Work with ‘less is more’ and you’ll end up with a delicious video with just enough of all the key ingredients!

Need some help cooking up your video or pricing out the ingredients? Contact us for some advice or a free quote.

This article was posted on December 8, 2015 at 17:34 in the Corporate category.

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