It’s been 5 whole years since my last post, and instead of giving you a random recap of which most of the information will be cut short, I thought I would just continue as if that time had not passed, and life had not taken me on the winding road to where I am now…
Travelling alone for work is always a strange experience. Restaurants are the most peculiar places I find, especially when there for dinner. You’re generally surrounded by families, friends and couples all on holiday, enjoying a relaxing dinner and drink at the end of a day of sightseeing or sunbathing. There’s a lot of time to ponder the world back home and wonder what everyone is up to at that particular moment in time.
There are obviously the fellow ‘working away’ soloists sat sporadically around the restaurant. You can always tell who they are, engrossed in an electrical device whether it be their phones, iPads, laptops or kindles. I’m not knocking this in the slightest. It’s a great way to keep in contact with those you miss and find yourself thinking about.
I started my new job as an International Format Consultant (Lahh-Dee-Day I know!) in May and since then, have been discovering just what this job is all about as well as travelling to various locations.
So what IS an International Format Consultant?
I’ll try and be brief but anyone knows me might know this might not be. I now work for what was BBC Worldwide but since April and ‘ the merge,’ it’s another arm of production in BBC Studios.
We’re a small team of 6; 4 flying consultants (of which I’m one), our team’s production co-ordination and our boss. We then work closely with two other teams so we sit with around 15-20 people. It’s a very sociable bunch, unless headphones are on and then not so much.
It’s our main goal to facilitate and encourage other broadcasters around the world to make the best version possible of a format. Whether that be Bake Off (yes the BBC own the international license to that – not including the UK or North America), Strictly (aka Dancing with the Stars to the rest of the globe), Astronauts or How To Stay Young, once the sales team have done their thing it’s passed onto one of us to help the local broadcaster produce their show.
Having spent 11 years in production, I thought I would miss the practical side more but alas, this job is so interesting and exciting that you don’t really get from
carrying, dragging lugging, kit weighing a small huge elephant around the country. Anyone who knows how much I love Eurovision and the idea of being a Head of Delegation will understand when I say, the job is a bit like that.
I like to think of it all a bit like a James Bond film, but without the missions involving death… and there are zero guns… and no Martini’s; shaken or stirred (mainly because I don’t like them)… and zero Bond Girls… and no lasers or plans for world domination, but way more glitter and baking and laughing and some gadgets but they have been purchased through standard routes as opposed to customised by a guy with a letter for a name.
Now as I write this I’m on a flight back from Athens. Yes there are the usual crying babies surrounding me and I’ve finally found the balance for my headphones which means they are drowned out for the most part, without leaving me totally deaf.
The team I’ve been working with have been incredible and SO welcoming; a classic Mediterranean spirit. But I am also glad to be going home, even if the weather is 20 degrees colder. Gotta love British weather.
I guess these posts might be a way for me to keep track of what’s exactly happened. So when I’m 90, sat with Adam, looking out on my balcony (because I’m going to have a balcony) I can relive these moments. Like a diary for the new age… including pictures obvs!
So, to the future me, and anyone else who would like to come along for the ride, hope you like it…