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Engineering success

The contracting business is rarely predictable. From the point at which a proposal for an installation first passes across your desk, the challenges standing

Engineering success

Nov 1, 1997 12:00 PM

The contracting business is rarely predictable. From the point at which aproposal for an installation first passes across your desk, the challengesstanding between you and the completion of that project begin to mount. Insome ways, the technical aspects of a given project are often the easiestfactors to consider. The dimensions of a building, the amount of availableelectricity, and the distance from the speaker to the intended audience areall quantifiable figures, and consequently, overcoming related obstacles israther straightforward. In fact, solving the necessary equations may indeedbe a welcome activity compared to dealing with the other headaches that mayarise.

Such headaches may rear their ugly heads in the most unlikely of places atthe most unwelcome of times. Restrictive spending constraints will limitequipment and personnel decisions. The client’s desire to keep ahigh-performance sound system from being a distraction to the audience canmake life doubly difficult, especially after demanding certain power andcoverage specifications. In addition, there may be delicate politicalmatters that require immediate attention, thereby drawing you away fromequally pressing concerns. Worse, tight deadlines will compound anypressure inherent in a specific project.

You may, however, take solace in the notion that everyone in the sound andvideo contracting business has either faced such challenges or will findhimself doing so in the near future. In whichever category you may findyourself, there is wisdom to be gleaned from the following pages. Byreading about the successes of others, you will be able to find new ways toovercome the challenges that await you in your next installation. If,perhaps, you have already met similar challenges, you may discover a betterway of handling them when they resurface in the future. Finally, it is verypossible that you have already found your unique manner of leaping over thehurdles that lie in your path, but there is always some margin forimprovement. Whether your next installation takes you to China, Greece, orto the local sports arena, you can never be completely prepared for everypossible difficulty. You can, however, learn from the triumphs of others.The problems they faced may never greet you in exactly the same manner, butby learning the methodology of their solutions – the engineering of theirsuccesses – you will be better equipped to dispel any headache that awaitsafter you accept your next contract.

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