Steph writes in:
My production supervisor1 is older; according to IMDb has been working since the 80s, so one would think with all her experience she’d be quite knowledgable. But there are some simple things I seem to know and she seems clueless about: ie stamping Gs and PRs “unapproved” before distro, or getting things like crew lists approved before distro-ing…many “standard” things like this. I’ve just been handling/shrugging it off until this point but last night she sent out the call sheet (I usually do it)…
I’ve always been taught to BCC everyone, or at least above the line people, when sending out mass emails. She sent it out and BCCed no one AND included actors’ personal emails in the blast. Our #1 sent an email back saying not to be included in mass emails unless she is bcc and that that is a good rule of thumb for all talent (duh). I mentioned the #1s email to her, and she didn’t seem to be phased by it…like, “Crap! I forgot to BCC! (because it happens sometimes)”
So my question to you is: as more instances like this come up, how do I tell my boss she is “doing it wrong”?
It’s one thing when you screw something up; it’s quite a different matter when it’s your boss.
I’m dealing with this very situation myself. It sucks, but the only thing you can do is to grit your teeth and bear it. There’s a limit to how much you can talk back before she’ll get sick of you.
It sounds like a lot of her mistakes have to do with computers. Remember, you grew up with them; she probably never had one until she was fifteen years into her career. You’ll have to do a lot of covering.
Also, you may not realize it, but people will be able to tell who’s doing it right, and who’s the fuck up. Yes, it may feel like “Oh, no, now the whole office looks like dummies!” But when you interact with people outside of her sphere of failure, they’ll figure it out. If you do everything right when they see you in person, they’ll know the mistakes are coming from elsewhere.
I know “Suck it up” isn’t the advice you want to hear, but that’s what it is.
This isn’t your last show. Keep doing good work, and everyone, including the prod sup, will know it. Hell, you might even get credit for putting up with this moron. (“How do you deal with that idiot every day?” is a question I’m asked regularly.) They’ll remember you next time.
- Production Supervisor is a step above production coordinator. It’s a position you don’t often see in television; it’s more often used in big movies. I’m not 100% sure (someone please correct me if I’m wrong), but I believe it’s not a union position, just a nice title with better pay.↩