Ergo-what? Ergonomics: the study of people’s efficiency in their working environment. In A/V? Absolutely. Now, I realize you may be thinking that I’ve been sniffing too many solder fumes, but stick with me here and I’ll explain. The more efficiently your workspace (i.e. mix position) is organized, the better able you will be to do your job. When we come in to a ministry, one of the things we always check is the situation at the mix position. We are looking for many things, but one of the biggest things we’re looking for is how the space is laid out. Can the tech reach everything? Is his chair falling apart? Is the computer he needs at one end of the desk and the video switcher at the other? From the mix position in the tiny windowless closet to the folding table in the hallway, we have seen it all!
Here are a few things to think about to help you evaluate your space and work more efficiently.
- Can you easily reach everything you need to without moving your chair?
- Can you see what’s going on? Is the desk, chair, wall, window, etc. the right height/width?
- Can you accurately hear what’s going on? Or are you tucked away in a corner where all the sound waves just bounce around?
- Is the space well-kept and organized? Does everything have place? How quickly can you find the microphone you need? Is the space clean?
- If something goes awry, can you quickly and effectively get to the gear to diagnose it, or do you have to climb over another tech or move a huge pile of stuff?
- Is it comfortable to sit and work at your station?
- Does your chair allow you to have your feet flat on the floor or a footrest while providing good back support?
These things go a long way in helping you be setup to succeed and focus on the task at hand, rather than trying to deal with your uncomfortable situation while doing your job.
Don’t know where to start? Ask yourself the next time you’re at your mix position, “Am I comfortable right now?” Many times a great mix position isn’t necessarily one that some designer put together, or something that cost a ton of money. We have often gone in, put a fresh coat of paint on things, cleaned it up, re-organized the gear, and it has made a huge difference.
Still don’t know where to start? Or have a task bigger than you can handle? Get in touch; we’d love to help you.