Today we’d like to introduce you to Josh Skehan.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Josh. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
Growing up as an only child with separated parents I was often quiet and found it hard to fit in, always feeling like more of an observer in this world rather than an active participant, but deep down I knew someday I’d have a purpose. I loved art and I loved people, but I truly lacked understanding and mentoring on how I would eventually convert that passion into making an income as an adult. As I grew older I would occasionally meet successfully self-employed people and they inspired me, so I guess I knew very young that I wanted to be self-employed. And I didn’t know it at the time, but when I was about 10 years old my Grandfather “Grampy” had the most profound impact on my life. He asked me to hold the shoulder-mount VHS home video camera to record family events and movies. From the moment I first held the camera I was enthralled with the functions…zooming, focusing, being able to view life through a lens and sometimes from a distance. I can’t explain it but for the first time, I felt like I could connect with the world from my often introverted perspective as a child. I still own that VHS camera, it was passed down to me, but a lot has changed since then.
I naturally became proficient with newer cameras and mediums as they rapidly advanced throughout the ’90’s and 2000’s. I joined the workforce at the age of 18, providing customer service and technical support for one of the largest wireless carriers in the US. I worked my way up to project manager by the age of 21, mainly by inventing and implementing company-wide best practices that saved the company millions. In that position, I found video production to be an excellent way to disseminate important information and recognize team members. That experience reignited my passion and I decided to pursue video production as a career. I then set out on a never-ending journey of self-taught study and submitted a winning video demo which landed me an internship with a video production company. I soon realized that not only was video my passion, but I was good at it! From researching and writing scripts to filming and acting, to the artwork and graphic design, to producing finished pieces and marketing them for retail sale, I once again quickly advanced within that company, earning the title of “Producer”. That company later dissolved but instead of looking at it as a set-back I saw it as an opportunity… An opportunity to create a company that not only provided great video production but also formed on a strong foundation of service and problem solving forged by my years in the customer service industry. Most of all I wanted to incorporate my love for people, so I created a company where I could deal with each client and vendor on a personal basis. I’m glad I did because I’ve come to believe that it’s the personal experience that helps create videos that meet or exceed the client’s vision.
I started small, producing wedding videos, birthday parties, and even the occasional cat video. As the years went on my skills improved and my business grew into different categories until I eventually settled into where I felt I fit the best, the event and corporate arenas. I think some of my success has come from maintaining my founding commitments; personal service, seeing every project through until the client is happy, but frankly, I owe much of my success to the wonderful people who have helped me, believed in me and given me opportunities that I never thought imaginable, and the committed vendors that have worked with me along the way. And now after 15 years, I run a thriving video production business that’s well-respected for the work it delivers and one that allows me to be at home with my family, meet new people, learn new things, and travel the world doing what I love. I wouldn’t want it any other way.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
I don’t know if it’s like this for every business owner, but it seems like the moment you finally get into a groove something changes. New cameras, new equipment, new formats, new workflows, software updates… There’s always something. It can be daunting, but when you decide that the thing that will set you apart from others is the fact that you’re willing to tackle these changes with positivity and your client’s interest in mind, the power to conquer them seems to come from nowhere. And then not only have you conquered those things, but now you are more resilient, more adaptable to change, and most importantly better suited to accept those higher-paying clients who always require the newest and greatest. By becoming an early adopter of change, you now become the leading purveyor of your craft.
Creating a steady income can be difficult as well. I’d say a video producer’s income is much akin to real estate agents, it comes in waves. Foremost I think it’s important to establish your pricing and firm payment policies to create consistency. Second I’d say it’s important to save (or spend wisely). And third, it’s important to understand your market and plan/advertise accordingly. For instance, Arizona is known to be slower in the summertime. Many producers/production companies go belly up in the summer because they did not accumulate or save enough income during the busy season (Fall-Spring). You need to learn to adapt during slower times… Take smaller jobs, maybe adjust your pricing in slow season or consider working outside your box and trying something new. Consider advertising in another City/State where people escape to during extreme heat or cold. Once you get that strategy down and start getting repeat clients you can create a steady stream of customers that will keep you busy all year long. On the other hand, slow times can be a perfect time to take care of yourself. Frankly, I’m at the point in my career when I look forward to slower times because it means I get to work on MY business and spend time with my family. Do some training in your craft or some personal work, get a new hobby, spend some time with your family. Using those slow times to take care of yourself can have exponential benefits to you and your career in the long run.
Please tell us about your work.
In short, I’d say we’re most well known for delivering videos that exceed expectations. My company, Josh Skehan Productions is a respected leader in professional event, corporate and promotional video production. We provide seasoned videographers and production teams to capture top-notch footage. We also produce professional event highlight videos, promotional videos and training videos for small businesses, medium-sized businesses, and for some of the nation’s most recognized companies. Essentially, we work with CEO’s, VP’s, Marketing Directors and individuals from all walks of life to deliver professional videos that they are proud of. We mainly serve Scottsdale and Phoenix, Arizona, but we’re often trusted to travel for projects throughout the US and even internationally.
What sets us apart is our passion for people and entrepreneurial spirit. I say “we/us” for a reason. It’s my company, but I cannot do it all myself. I’m most proud of my network of highly qualified independent contractors. Over the years I’ve created relationships with qualified and reliable resources for local, national and international projects. I only select contractors that have the same passion that I do. And I only utilize the resources needed at a given time which results in efficiencies for my company and savings for clients. This also allows me to choose from a wider pool of talent. This business model allowed my company to thrive during some of the worst economic circumstances of our time. This model also feeds a passion for entrepreneurialism and excellence. I can offer subcontractors independence by helping them build their sustainable businesses with a steady stream of business from my company. And I can demand excellence from them and instill confidence in them by making them responsible for the work they provide.
What this means to our customers is that they receive extraordinary video services and amazing value. We do that by providing individualized service, customizable packages and experienced teams suited for every project.
If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
Overall I’m very proud of the decisions I’ve made. Any mistakes I made were fortunate in the sense that they only affected me (not my clients or vendors), I only took risks that I was willing to pay for. But if there’s one thing I could’ve learned sooner it would be to let people help me. From the time I started working, I’ve had an extreme determination to understand every facet of the business and be excellent at it. And honestly, I’m pretty good at it but you can’t be the best at everything. And the truth is if you want your business to grow then you have to learn how to trust people and bring them in at the right time to help, It’s a hard decision to make, to let go of that pride and to trust someone to perform a function of a business that you started from the ground up. especially if your name is on the storefront so to speak, but in the long run letting people help you is vital to growing your business.
- Address: 14747 N. Northsight Blvd
- Phone: 4802550280
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/azvideopro
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/azvideopro
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/azvideopro
- Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/biz/josh-skehan-productions-scottsdale
- Other: http://www.videoproductionscottsdale.com
All images copyright Josh Skehan Productions