The best escape rooms offer top-notch puzzles, amazing customer service and perfectly-functioning facilities. Failing to offer this ‘holy trinity’ could lead to a disappointing experience for customers.
Escape rooms don’t just happen by accident, of course, and as well as meticulous planning they also need the right staff to make the experience unforgettable. Who you employ to help your escape room come to life matters; from the planning stage to the staff who interact with customers. Missing a step could lead to a disappointing end product. That’s why it’s vital to hire the right people for your escape room.
Great trade links enhance the immersion
While we might take on as much responsibility as possible in our escape rooms, learning to let go of the reins can benefit the customer experience. A great example of this is ensuring you have positive working relationships with the relevant trades. Everything in your room needs to work perfectly and handle being used frequently, otherwise it ruins the immersion.
Imagine your participants are supposed to pull a lever to access another room only for it not to work and the puzzle remains unsolved. That’s not value for money. Having great trade links with electricians, plasterers and carpenters can really help you out, whether it’s during the initial build or for emergency maintenance.
Try to keep tradespeople on-side
Knowing you can rely on those folks to come in and do a great job with minimal fuss is invaluable. However, if you have ever had to call out an electrician you will know that it can be a long wait. A shut down escape room does give meaning to the phrase time is money. That’s why it’s important to find tradespeople you can trust who are willing to come out at short notice.
Skills shortages in the trade industry mean tradespeople are harder to find than ever before, with many job vacancies left unfilled. This does mean there are great opportunities for electricians, builders, carpenters, etc., but it’s not so great if you need to hire one. From fixing emergency issues to making your vision become a reality with their technical skills, great trade connections are never a bad thing.
Getting safety right is a no-brainer
Hiring the right people for the job is also critical for ensuring the safety of your escape room. There have been cases in the past where fires have started in escape rooms, leading to fatal consequences. All businesses need to comply with fire safety regulations, and escape rooms are no different.
Ensuring you have quality tradespeople doing their work on your premises mitigates the chances of disaster happening. Some of the most common accidents at work include being hit by falling objects, inhaling toxic fumes and walking into objects.
All three causes could feasibly happen in an escape room but are all avoidable when safely planned with the appropriate tradespeople, insurers and risk assessors. Completing a thorough survey of your escape room before it goes live can expose any structural weaknesses or missed hazards.
Making the most of your space
When you first opened your escape room it might have been an idea you were kicking around in your head for years. But once it has been open for a few years the time comes to freshen things up.
Think of this a little like the difficult second album for a music star. They had been planning on writing their brilliant first album since they were a child but hadn’t thought about a second one. This is where the use of a great escape room designer can be your business’ saviour.
Coming up with puzzles and themes for escape rooms isn’t always easy, if it was then everybody would be making them. Sometimes bringing in a fresh pair of eyes to take a look at the space your escape room is set in can be revolutionary.
Escape room designers should have experience in designing puzzles and escape rooms plus an understanding of puzzle-solving. The best designers can combine the puzzles, clues and escape rooms into a cohesive narrative.
Artists and designers complete the aesthetics
Players stepping into an escape room want to be whisked away to whatever world lies beyond the locked doors. However, a poor finish to your escape room ‘set’ can make all of the hard work setting it up seem worthless. If the finishing touches seem like they were done by a toddler they can be world breaking.
Consider set designers, who often work in film and theatre, or art students looking for some part-time work. For a similar reason you need good tradespeople to do the work, artists and designers can ensure your room doesn’t appear unfinished.
The game master
Perhaps you have a passion for escape rooms but performing in front of a crowd isn’t for you. There’s nothing wrong with that and plenty of people would consider themselves to be in the same boat.
An estimated 12.1% of U.S. adults experience social anxiety disorder at some time in their lives. “For some people, it gets better as they get older”, According to the NHS, “But for many people, it does not go away on its own without treatment”.
If you feel like this is you, hiring someone to take control of the game master role could transform the experience for your customers. Someone who is engaging and thrives when in the spotlight is ideal for this role. Consider posting job adverts for game masters on acting job websites like backstage.com or starnow.com for potential candidates.
How to find the right people
Knowing who the right people are is half the battle, the other is making them a part of your team. The best place to start is to draw up a list of every role you need to fill and then start setting some requirements. That could be personality types for certain roles or technical skills for others.
Ways to build good trade connections include using personal recommendations and using online directories that offer customer reviews. Once you find a skilled tradesperson who you like, ask them for recommendations for other trades. Many tradespeople build a trusted network of fellow skilled workers in other industries and often suggest their colleagues if asked.
Ultimately, the effort you put into getting the right people on board could be the difference between your escape room being a hit or a flop. If you get it right, your escape room business can grow from strength to strength, or from puzzle to puzzle!