What’s it take to go the distance in this business? Certainly there’s no single answer, but perhaps there’s four: pursue, persist, prepare, and promote. These four elements are vital to succeeding at anything, let alone establishing your small business as a voiceover because they never go away.
Whatever it is you may end up accomplishing in this business, success will occur only if you pursue it. The world won’t come to you, no matter how much talent you have and regardless the amount of nepotism you might have access to, you have to go to the world. Ultimately, it’s up to you to create and run your career.
You have to set your sights on your immediate goals and then persist at attaining them. Developing and then maintaining your skills requires persistent dedication. In fact, this element only seems to increase with success, not the other way around—contrary to what many novices may think. So, if you’re easily frustrated or simply give up after a few months of training or perhaps after a year of promotion, then you’ll never honestly know for yourself what you could have created without real persistence.
Developing your abilities and on-going promotion require patience, and a great deal of it.
Talent left alone will ultimately atrophy and fail you. Your skills will develop as you continue to work them, so keep at it. This means coaching. Allow yourself the opportunity to develop your skills and challenge your comfort zone so that agility becomes second nature. Creating seamless performance abilities is in part what makes you reliable and valuable. It’s how you develop the confidence to rely on yourself, and what others will come to rely on as well, but it demands commitment. It requires proper conditioning, not unlike an athlete. Talent is not solely what you were born with; it can die on the vine, it takes attention. The moment your skills lay dormant, your professionalism will be shaken, and with that, your confidence. Your confidence is directly related to your integrity. And regardless of your position, no matter how affluent you may be, no one can afford to lose his or her integrity. So you must continue to prepare.
Preparation is continually required of you as a talent on a variety of levels.
For instance, never set your sites on securing ‘just one audition’, or ‘one big break’, or wait until the time is ‘just right’. If you do, you will only secure ONE audition, ONE break, and the ‘right’ time will never arrive because you never took the time to give yourself the opportunity. The time is right when you decide it is, so make that time NOW. Make a decision as to what you want in your life and work toward that goal. By doing so you’ll accomplish everything you ever imagined possible.
Promotion is an aspect of being a professional few embrace as it feels too much like being boastful or ungrateful, yet it’s neither. Auditioning is a form of promotion it simply should be the only form of promotion if you hope to create a career for yourself. Lack of promotion could easily account for scores of talented souls who fall into oblivion before ever getting out of the starting gate.
If you leave your career alone, I promise you, nothing will happen. It will slip through your fingers. No one who ever scored an Oscar accepted it, saying, “This was so easy! I don’t know why all of you guys don’t have one. It was a piece of cake!” No one says that because the opposite is true. Anything worthwhile is accomplished from hard work, and lots of it.
Promotion comes with the territory in every business but especially the entertainment business. And consistent promotion is how we make ourselves known and familiar. It can’t be ignored or done half-heartedly if you hope to succeed as a working talent. Those who become consummate professionals make it their business to run their own careers rather than leave it to chance, and that always includes attention to proper promotion.
So, when you find yourself losing patience, and no doubt everyone does in every small business from time to time, rather than dwell on being frustrated, put your energy into your pursuits, in your preparation, and in your promotion. There’s always something you could be doing RIGHT NOW to forward your goals of creating the career you’ve always intended. Frustration will pass if you concentrate on the work at hand.
Copyright © 2020 by Kate McClanaghan. All Rights Reserved.