My wife and I have recently been trying out some of the subscription meal services out there. Don’t get me wrong, my wife is a superb cook, but sometimes in the essence of time, you just need something quick but fresh for dinner.

If you’ve never dabbled with these types of do-it-yourself, fresh meal subscriptions, you’d be surprised at how easy they make it for you.

As easy as they make it though, I’ve found the key to making these recipes even easier is the preparation of the ingredients before delving into the actual cooking.

Although the chopping and slicing of the ingredients are the most time consuming, having everything organized before you start the cooking of the meal makes all the difference in the world.

Everything goes much smoother, and I’ve found that there is less clean up as well, if you stay organized.

My wife and I usually trade between making the meal or cleaning up.

As my turn comes up to make the meal, I can’t help but think of the similarities between producing these meal kits and producing a program book.

How? You ask.

Besides me always thinking about how to make the perfect program book, the similarity between these meal kits and a perfect program book is the organization and processes that must be in place.

Just like the meal kit comes with a well-documented, step-by-step process for cooking the meal, every program book production department should have the same—a well-documented process.

And just like I’ve found that the preparation before the cooking to be key in these meal kits, having all your “ingredients” for your program book prepared in advance is key as well in producing the best program book you can.

Saying this, below is our recipe for the perfect program book.

Clean and Cut the Vegetables (Advertising Contracts Checked)

After each sale, the program book advertising contracts need to be thoroughly checked, and then data entered into some type of system to control the advertising inventory.

After the contracts are entered, they need to be audited. This assures for accuracy and reduces claims to near 0%.

Prepare the Protein (Gather Your Content)

The content of the program book is the protein or the main ingredient.

All the advertising around the content is the stuff that gives the program book the flavor.

Program book content from the various departments in your organization should start to be gathered, and the program book can now start to be laid out in your pagination software.

By taking extra care in proofing the content so that there are no errors, will make for a superb program book when it all comes together.

Make the Spicy Sauce (Mobile, and Digital Signage)

Adding a dash of Mobile and digital signage to the printed program books is going to give the kick that the audience expects.

Taking the time to intertwine these two very important ingredients into the program book will engage the audience like never before.

Bring it all Together (Program Books are Printed)

Getting the program book print files off to the printer on time is the most important piece of the performing arts program book recipe. Overcook these, and you’re doomed!

While the files are at the printer, the finishing touches can be made to the mobile and digital signage so that the full flavor or the program books are brought out.

Plate Your Dish

When all is said and done, the printed program books, mobile program books, and digital signage should all come together to enhance the live performance.

Remember, plate presentation is just as important as the taste of the meal itself.

As I start to come back around with my thoughts that have wandered as I continue to chop and slice, I once again can’t help but wonder; what a difference having my own sous chef would make!

If only there were a performing arts program book sous chef out there. Or is there? Good selling!


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