Audio Engineering: A Service Industry For the Creative

Audio Engineering: A Service Industry For the Creative

When we think of creativity in music, our minds often go to the artists, the ones whose voices and instruments give life to the songs we love. However, behind every great song, there’s another creative force at work: the audio engineer. Audio engineering is not just a technical job; it’s a service industry tailored to the needs of musicians and producers.

Understanding Audio Engineering as a Service:

Audio engineers are the unsung heroes of the music industry. They work tirelessly behind the scenes to ensure that the music sounds its best. From recording and mixing to mastering, their expertise is essential in bringing a musical vision to life. But there’s another side to audio engineering that is not taught in school and is frequently overlooked by young engineers looking to make this their career.

Customer Service

First and foremost, audio engineering is a customer based service. A lot of the time this gets overlooked because of how technical the job requirements are.

Picture yourself as a food server, a customer comes to you and asks your recommendation on what they should eat. You give your expertise and they make their decision based on your recommendations.

Now, correlate this to audio engineering. A customer comes to you with a record and asks your expertise on how to make it sound better. You give your opinion and the artist makes decisions based on what you have recommended.

This is all straight forward, but think about your favorite restaurants and why they are your favorite. Yes, the food should be good, as should your mixes or masters. But many restaurants, like engineers, have quality products. So, what sets your favorites from the others? The answer is in the experience.

The Experience

The experience is what brings repeat customers. Several factors contribute to creating this experience. Here is some things to think about:

Being Personable

Nobody wants a know-it-all who is unwilling to explore new ideas. Regardless of your level of expertise and what you believe is right, the customer should always feel heard. Instead of dismissing their ideas, encourage them and let them know that their ideas are valued, no matter how unconventional they may seem. People want to be part of the creative process and not be dictated to, especially when they are the creative force!

Personality

When you are working with an artist, don’t be afraid to be you. Many engineers, by nature, have social anxiety or are shy due to the nature of the job. When you are in the room, don’t get in the way or disrupt, but make sure people get to experience your personality. People work with who they like, if you want repeat clientele, you need to be like-able.

Ego

Leave your ego at the door. Remember, the song belongs to the artist, not to you. This leads us to the old cliche that ‘The customer is always right’. Even if they are wrong.. technically, they are right if it’s what they want, always keep that in mind.

In conclusion, audio engineering is not just about technical skills; it’s about providing excellent customer service and creating a positive experience for the artists you work with. If you can master the art of customer service while being technically adept, you will go a long way!

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