Video : Skill vs experience

How important is related experience?

On a recent client shoot, one of the great lines in his script was a quote "Whatever got you here won't get you there". It's an encapsulation of the need to move forwards, try new things, and not rely solely on old methods to move your business to greater heights. So when you are hiring, which is more important, skill and adaptability, or experience in your particular niche? I believe when it comes to video marketing, it is the former. There is the risk that if a business is looking to produce something that is 'of its industry', it will just blend in with all its competitors. We have a project in pre-production where I have little experience in the client's business niche - and I am open about that. What I saw in the initial conversation was a risk that we would produce a corporate video that used a stock approach and fell flat - that would have been the easy way out. Actually what happened was that my memory was sparked of a scene from a short film I worked on, and how we could apply a fictional scenario to a factual piece. I am reminded of the time I lost a bid due to lack of a portfolio in a specific industry. That hurt. But I wasn't grilled about experience before I produced a very specific promo for a local organisation - a video which has excellent audience retention figures over its 10,000 YouTube views. Skill and adaptability were much higher on my CV than my experience of huge trade fairs - yet a client who was looking for a relatively generic promo video product in this sector said "I was amazed at how well you understood the brief. The footage is really good and it is without a doubt the best promo video this industry has ever seen." If you are outsourcing, you can't teach skill and knowledge, but you can communicate what YOU want to help your business move forwards, and that may not be anything your industry, your competitors, or you have ever tried before.