So I know a lot of folks who are life coaches… and I think it is a cool job….some of my closest friends are life coaches… but if you are an actor and you are paying a “consultant” - (and you have a rep - whether it is an agent or a manager) to tell you what is “wrong” with your career (or different ways you can make things happen). Then why the hell are you wasting your reps time…. honestly…. I have actually had a few folks say to me “well my consultant thinks we could be doing more….” (It makes me laugh…. Then I think shit…. Maybe I went into the wrong business. Maybe I should charge folks to tell them what to do…). Honestly - if you are really going to pay a consultant (and yes… that is me rolling my eyes) to talk to you about your career…. Then you really don’t need me… if your consultant says hey you need to work more… and maybe you need a different agent… or an agent (if you don’t have one). And then gives you suggestions of things you can have me do…. I am going to probably say go have them manage you… and if you don’t live in hollywood (or NYC). And you have someone in your town who you want to pay so they can “guide” you and your career….. I guess I would want to know what makes them a good consultant to guide you in a business like this. What qualifies them? I am not here to take away anyones livelihood…. Honestly….but there is a reason why we don’t charge up front…(well… besides the fact that it is illegal). This is a business that ebbs and flows in so many ways and when you sign with an agent or a manager it is because we know we can guide you… based on our actual experience. And as far as I am concerned…. (That means me personally). I don’t charge people to consult for them because this business should not be a big secret….there is no magic formula….it is already a hard place to navigate….I am certainly not going to take your money to tell you that…. (Although I will happily take the 10% I earn when we work together)
Also…. Since the only advice about your career is hopefully coming from your reps… then why the hell are you listening to other actors - This one has me scratching my head…. Your journey’s are not the same…. AT ALL. It is not your place to advise anyone - especially if your career is also just getting started…. Also… if you are the idiot actor who is listening to someone who is basically at the same level as you then you get what you deserve. This is not to say you all should not talk…. but no two careers are alike and unless you are ready to give up being an actor and perhaps go into the management biz…SHUT UP!
Please stop saying yes…. (Weird right… ). Let me be a bit more clear… if you have a rep (or reps). And someone offers you something please for god sake… stop saying yes….. we know you want to work…. We want you to work….so instead of just saying yes to everything… say this instead… CALL MY MANAGER. I get it - it is a little longer to say…. A few more syllables… but you will make our lives oh so much easier. And in the end… yours too!! We won’t have to navigate around any messes…clean anything up…. Gives us a bit more power with negotiating….and… if whoever asked you in the first place does not want to talk to your reps…. yup… that is a big red flag…. I don’t care how big or small the project is…. hey… if you don’t need us to help… then why are we here…. We know bigger things are coming…. That is why we sign you… we see the bigger picture….so stop selling yourself short…..
So here is something that I am not a fan of…. (And never have been). Managers who are friends with their clients….I am not your friend…. Don’t miss understand me… I like you… I really do!! But my job is to not be friends with you…. I am here for you to cry on my shoulder… share your deepest darkest things…. And allow me to help you and get you to the next level….what I am not interested in is having that reciprocated - when I see reps that only hang out with their clients I have to wonder…. What is wrong with that manager…. We do hang with our clients… occasionally… or on the set… or if we have to travel for work….but when I see reps that only ever hang out with clients it blurs the lines….. it is like being a parent… you want to get along with your kids… but you don’t want to be their buddy…so now you are thinking… what is the big deal….why wouldn't you want to be friends with me… to me (and remember… this is about me right now). I take my job as a manager very seriously - and I also want to be able to hang out with my friends and not be a manager….and you don’t get to do that…. More importantly…. Do you really want to know my weird secrets…. (ok.. so maybe you do) I have seen a lot of managers who get close to their clients and make the mistake of being “friends”. So that when something goes wrong it comes from a whole other place - it is a relationship that really needs boundaries…. You want me on my a- game…. Not wondering if I am sitting on the couch eating ice cream and being depressed….when you see managers that ONLY hang out with clients… be wary…. Does not make them horrible people - no… just means they don’t know how to create boundaries…. And you need personal boundaries for good business!
Which makes me think about manager manipulation.....be wary of the manager (or the agent) who lectures you about your personal life and creates weird “rules” for you to abide by....(generally these are managers who don’t understand boundaries). Your managers job is to strategize with you in regards to your career....if they are telling you things like don’t talk to someone...or they chastise you for things you do in your personal life that have nothing to do with business....be wary....again....when people don’t understand the boundaries of what we do and things get fuzzy....it is usually the actor who ends up getting the short end of the stick....
So why say any of this…. Because to me the lines should NEVER be blurry between reps and actors…. EVER…. We are here for you, to protect you not hang out with you. You have to know that we are the people you can trust…. With all the things that are happening in hollywood right now… you should know that you have someone in your corner…..
And on a final note….the lines can sometimes appear to be blurry when you are meeting a powerful person in this business but don’t let anyone take your power away from you - male or female…. And as we are seeing now in hollywood how so many big players are toppling over….. learn to navigate through the mess. Remember a few things…. 1. If you are meeting a casting director or producer/director the meeting should be in an office (not a hotel or a house or an apartment) 2. If something inappropriate happens report it ASAP - do not wait weeks, months or years. 3. Trust your gut…. It is right more often than you give it credit for!
ok.. now go be rockstars!