TCFF Manager Responsibilities

A manager’s job is to ensure that each volunteer is matched with an appropriate job that helps promote an outstanding movie going experience for festival patrons, and provides a rewarding experience for the volunteer. Volunteers respond to positive energy and encouragement. Please point out things that are going well and be sure to say “Thank you!” often!

Operations Manager Linda Price

  • Oversees all venues

Venue Manager

  • Responsible for all decisions and everything that occurs in the venue
  • Makes pre-movie announcements
  • Coordinates all venue assistant and area managers
  • Authorized to oversell house seats
  • Places supply orders with warehouse

Assistant Manager: General

  • Assists House Manager
  • Shares all House responsibility
  • Oversees Sponsor Signage for each show
  • Creates daily flow chart (whiteboard)

Assistant Manager: Front of House

  • Checks in Volunteers and provides Volunteer Briefing
  • Checks out Volunteers, collects any assigned materials, and distributes Volunteer Feedback Form
  • Assigns volunteers to all tasks and to their direct Managers
  • Oversees Ushers

Assistant Manager: In House

  • Provides House Manager supply order

Assistant Manager: Sales

  • Responsible for Box Office, Concession and Merchandise sales and inventory
  • Oversees volunteers in these areas
  • Provides supply order to Venue Manager
  • Trains and supervises volunteers on sales procedures
  • Handles ticket availability, donation receipt forms and sales reporting

Assistant Manager: Door / Line

  • Responsible for maintaining orderly lines of ticket holders and standby festival    goers
  • Coordinates logistics of ticket holder entry with Venue & / or House Manager
  • Trains and oversees Door and Line volunteers

Assistant Manager: Guest Services

  • Helps sponsors and gestival guests to their seats
  • Oversees reserved seating at the venue
  • Works with a team member outside the venue who has a clip board with ribbons on it that helps sponsors and guests find the right person who can help them.

Stage Manager

  • Responsible for executing stage activity – Entertainment and Special Guests
  • Handles all communication between the venue and the projection booth, all venues will have a Clear Com system in 2011 for this purpose
  • Monitors sound and picture quality during first 20 minutes of film, then throughout duration
  • Keeps everything on time
  • Responsible for the sound picture checks in between films with projectionist
  • Gives the go-ahead to open doors when the house is clear and everything is set
  • Assists musicians when setting up and cues them for both start up and wrap up
  • Remains at post while film is running unless approved by venue manager and backup person assumes duty
  • Responsible for assisting with microphones for audience Q & As
  • Ensures that backstage area remains quiet and allows access to verified personnel only
  • Coordinates filmmakers on and off stage with Green Room

Green Room

  • The Venue Sponsor and the Sponsor of the film or event in progress are allowed access to the Green Room. 
  • The Sponsor may bring a Guest, but both must have Sponsor credentials.  There may be exceptions.
  • Non-TCFF press, photographers and videographers must be escorted to the Green Room by a member of the PR Team


Volunteer Job Descriptions

Ushers, reports to Assistant Manager – Front House

  • Assists in admitting patrons to venues
  • Takes tickets at venues
  • Assists patrons in finding seats
  • Cleans venues after showings, including bagging trash and emptying recycling bins
  • Responds to patrons’ needs during showings
  • Straightens public areas during shows

Clickers, reports to Assistant Manager – Front House

  • Counts each ticket holder entry by utilizing clickers
  • Assumes other duties as assigned by direct supervisor
  • Writes the count on the envelope

Clipboarders, reports to Assistant Manager – Front House

  • Stands out front to greet anyone with a green or yellow lanyard
  • Writes down the names / company info of those individuals on the clipboard
  • Writes the information on the envelope

Concessions, reports to Assistant Manager – Sales

  • Sets up and cleans up Concession areas
  • Prepares popcorn
  • Sells concession items, maintains a clean and inviting atmosphere
  • Reconciles cash and inventory

Door / Line Wrangling, reports to Assistant Manager – Door / Line

  • Ensures order is kept in both ticket holder and standby lines
  • Advises patrons on procedures of how to present their tickets upon entry, and when admittance will occur
  • Looks for patrons who may require early admittance due to special needs or other assistance.  Remember that wheelchair users in the stand-by line must be seated first, with just one companion, before other patrons, regardless of their position in the line.  Seats designated as wheelchair accessible seats should first be given to a person in a wheelchair before it is released for general seating.

There are many other jobs that are necessary to support the venues and festival attendees.  Here are a few of them that you may see:

Information Ambassador, reports to Transportation Manager

An Information Ambassador is the central information person for transportation, movies, directions, shuttles and more!  This is a very fun and interactive position, where you will meet and greet the festival goers.

Information Ambassadors help people navigate the film festival and Traverse City!

  • Helps festival-goers use the free, green and easy festival busses and schedules
  • Answer questions about movies, entertainment, ticket lines and venues
  • Offers other information as requested including where to eat, directions, etc.
  • Works with drivers to make sure the busses are on time
  • Works with venue managers to keep lines and bus waiting times to a minimum

Technical Team Services, reports to TCFF Office & Venue Managers

  • Lifts, carries, and moves equipment, supplies, and other materials
  • Sets up/tears down equipment, projection booths, seating, open space
  • Provides all construction needs for all venues

Production Services(Additional training required.  Please contact the TCFF office to check volunteer assignment availability.  Technical experience preferred).

  • Takes care of print traffic (moving films to and from venues)
  • Assists Projectionist
  • Operates spotlights
  • Supports lighting and sound requirements at all venues

Stage Support (Additional training required.  Please contact the TCFF office to check volunteer assignment availability).

  • Assists with technical support for Panels
  • Assists with Stage management

Warehouse, reports to Warehouse Manager

  • Receives, sorts, inventories and distributes festival merchandise, concessions and supplies


Volunteer Survival Tips

Do – Have Fun, Smile, and:

  • The festival’s success depends on volunteers. If you can’t make your shift for some reason, please let us know in advance so we can look for a replacement. We do not overbook shifts – it really does take a large number of people to run venues smoothly when we have full houses!
  • Credentials are required
  • Wear your festival volunteer tshirt or manager shirt when you are on shift (and please don’t wear it when you’re attending movies)
  • Wear loose, comfortable, presentable clothing with washable bottoms – shorts, skirts, pants (khaki is OK)
  • Footwear should be comfortable for walking and standing for long periods of time, and appropriate for indoor or outdoor activities.
  • Please arrive on time for your shifts and attend start of shift orientations
  • Be sure to stay hydrated and eat healthy, nutritious foods at regular times
  • Project a helpful, positive, friendly image
  • Take the initiative and be alert for patrons who may need assistance of any kind (i.e. directions, help walking up the aisle or negotiating balcony steps)
  • Remember to silence cell phones and pagers during movie showings
  • Be sure to check out with the Front House Manager at the end of your shift and turn in the Volunteer Feedback Form at that time

…. and Don’t:

  • Half-shirts or belly revealing tops or muscle shirts
  • Skin tight (lycra, spandex, bike pants, etc.) pants or shorts
  • Low riding pants (no unmentionables showing, please)
  • Very short or micro shorts
  • Anything with holes
  • Please, no consumption of alcohol before, between or during your festival shifts

Directly from the TCFF Board of Directors: Please do not wear your volunteer shirts during the festival when you are not working.  It is very confusing to patrons who have purchased tickets to find people sitting in seats wearing volunteer shirts.  They think we are taking up their seats!  Please bring a change of clothing if you plan to attend films or festival events.

What to Bring:

  • Water, juice or other beverages in plastic, and/or soda pop in cans or plastic.
  • Ushers –bring a flashlight if possible
  • Rain gear and sun protection if scheduled for outdoor venue or duties