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Legal Videography and Customer Service?? Really?

In my 10 years experience in the Legal Video and Trial Support field customer service is a topic that is rarely mentioned. It seems that some videographers have it and some don’t when it comes to customer service. It seems that some videographers just don’t consider it part of their job description to be professional and friendly. While for other videographers it seems to come naturally. I have several years of customer service background and find it natural to introduce myself, shake hands and offer any assistance to make others feel comfortable.Legal videographers have to remain neutral therefore it is important to treat everyone the same.

You are being paid for a service, and if you want to establish a good reputation for yourself, brush up on your customer service skills. In my opinion, there is an expected level of customer service for videographers. If you have not been in the customer service industry before, here are the highlights:

1. Greet the receptionist or secretary when you arrive, and tell them why you are there (for a deposition or medical exam, or whatever). They may not be familiar with what you do, so don't assume they are. Have your notice of deposition or other paperwork available if they request it.

2. Plan to arrive one hour early. You may have the wrong address, or you might encounter some technical difficulty while setting up, so you want to allow plenty of time. Also, from time to time two or more videographers will show up for a job. The rule of thumb is that the first videographer to arrive gets the job.

3. Be flexible. It is the videographer's job to arrange the room for the deposition. However, the client is paying you, so you should try to accommodate their requests, as long as it does not affect your ability to get a clean shot of the witness. At times someone may ask you to arrange your equipment differently. You should comply, as long as it doesn't compromise your ability to do your job. Be polite, and let them know that you will need some time to rearrange your equipment. I have heard stories of videographers arguing with the attorneys about how to set up their equipment. This will certainly not get you invited back.

Tip: If you give people more than they expect you will be successful because your success depends on other people you meet everyday.

4. Dress appropriately. For men I suggest a shirt and dress pants at a minimum. A tie and even a suit are not uncommon, and for women, similar business-casual attire. Keep in mind that you want to stand out from your competition so investing in the appropriate clothing is a good idea.

5. Neatness counts. Have your equipment well organized and presentable, with cords and cables tightly wrapped and easy to assemble.

6. Personality. One of the most important ways to stand out from your competition is how you interact with others in the room. Make a good first impression, treat every deposition as a job interview, and you will be a success.

Tip: The best videographers combine technical expertise with a polished customer service approach.

Tip: Often you will be more familiar with the office the deposition is being taken in than the attorneys, so offer to get them a cup of coffee or show them where the kitchen is. Clean up after the deposition. Pick up cups, cans, and loose papers. Leave the room exactly the way you found it.

Think you have what it takes to become a legal videographer?  Go to The Legal Video Academy and find out!


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Ihave been in the court reporting industry for over 20 years.In my experience Michael Sturdevant has been the most reliable and professional... Read More!

Liz Barnes