Making records is more about interacting with people than it is about anything else. Great people skills can take you the distance in a career in recording, even when you may not be the most knowledgeable or the definitively most talented person to ever step into the studio. On top of that, it’s very likely that if you have great people skills, clients will choose you over someone else who may know more, or be more “talented” than you.
When I got my first studio job as an intern, there was an assistant engineer who was a huge jerk. He knew everything there was to ever know about being an audio engineer – all the nuances and ultra technical particulars of how every piece of gear worked, the science behind capturing great sounds, how to repair broken gear – everything. But he was a jerk, and a loudmouth with poor work ethic. Clients constantly asked for him to be replaced with someone – anyone! – else.
If you’re cold and stale, do the bare minimum to get the job done, and run you mouth off every minute of the day, you’re going to be asked to leave.
If you treat people kindly, if you’re authentic, honest, and genuine, people will enjoy the work they do with you, and feel good about what you’ve created together.
Technical knowledge and production skills are important. But not nearly as important as treating people right. Of all the skills it’s important to have in the studio, none of them will provide a secure, long-term path to success like having good people skills will.