As a talent manager, it is my great joy to connect with so many industry playmakers on behalf of talent. In conversations with agents, casting directors, and other industry professionals, one point always comes up: kindness matters.
In a time when communication is overwhelmingly digital, every e-mail interaction is an opportunity for a human connection. Each audition submission is the chance to build a relationship. Being straightforward is important — but a little charm goes a long way!
So, I thought — what better way to kick off 2024 than with a little VO Charm School?
Expressing gratitude goes a long, long way! Casting directors, agents, and anyone you’re hoping to get a job from are oftentimes going out of their way to get you booked. So, a thank you for their hard work will never go unappreciated. Here are some best practices when it comes to cultivating positive relationships through your demeanor online (and in person!):
- Professionalism doesn’t have to be perfunctory.
Including a nice introduction or short personal note to go with a request or submission will help you cultivate relationships and also, brighten the days of the individuals you’re corresponding with. It may even help you keep a positive attitude as you get what you give! Seize the opportunity to build that interpersonal, human connection in our mostly remote landscape on a daily basis.
- Mind your time zones!
In this business, we all know it can be difficult to ever truly unplug. Scheduling your emails (as long as it isn’t a rush casting!) to respect the workday parameters of whoever you’re contacting is a small act that will alleviate stress on their end. Getting pinged at 9am instead of 7:30pm will help your contact maintain that ever elusive work-life balance, in turn helping them be fresh faced and energized on your behalf!
- Don’t be all business, all the time.
While meeting colleagues in social settings, it can be tempting to bring up the one thing that you know is a sure connection — work. But off the clock, people don’t always want to talk shop. Try to build a more personal rapport, which will in turn help impact the familiarity you can build online. Are you both pet lovers? Do they have kids they’d love to brag about? Did you see an amazing vacation they may have shared on social media? Networking is a huge piece of the puzzle, but nobody wants to feel like they can’t leave work at work.
- Details make all the difference!
When it comes down to it, everyone loves to feel considered. Remembering a birthday, checking-in about a trip someone mentioned to you in an off-hand way, sending a holiday note, and other little acts that show people they’re being kept in mind can mean the world. Think about small acts of kindness that might help cultivate strong relationships with the people you professionally interact with all year round.
As 2024 continues, be sure to infuse a little extra charm in all you do, and see how it not only impacts your business but also helps build your positive mindset.