IT’S NOT WHAT YOU KNOW, IT’S WHO YOU KNOW

Published on 19th Mar, 2010

IT’S NOT WHAT YOU KNOW, IT’S WHO YOU KNOWBy Callum Mansfield

We’ve all heard the saying before, but is it actually true?

YES, because you should never underestimate the impact that networking will have on your career.

NO, because you need to have the talent to back you up!
So how do you meet the right people and make an impression that counts? Well, I thought I would throw together some tips that might help you out…

1. Never be in too much of a hurry
If you have just finished a performance, are exhausted and want nothing more than to race out of stage door, drive home and fall asleep in front of the television at home, then your networking will fall asleep too! You MUST make the time post performance to greet and meet the people who have taken the time to watch you perform – you never know who you might strike up a conversation with.

2. Invite! Invite! Invite!
You should have a small guest list written of the people you think need to see you dance. Then, when you are in your next production, INVITE THEM! Get them a free ticket – if you can’t, then pay for it yourself! They will be more inclined to come to a performance of yours if it is free.

3. Don’t be a fake!
Remember that networking is building a relationship, and no one establishes a relationship with someone they think fake. The best type of networking is genuine. So, just relax, don’t make up information, call the person by name and try to avoid talking about yourself too much!

4. Never be in a hurry to make an enemy!
This idea applies to so much of the life of a performer – particularly in a cast or company. Be quick to forgive and forget and slow to react. So much of the performing arts industry is based on opinion and talk…and if that talk is negative, then consider your opportunities useless. It takes a lifetime to build trust, but a second to destroy it. So be careful with your words!

5. Use FACEBOOK wisely!
Just like the force of a Jedi, Facebook can be used for good and evil. Use it to connect with others professionals in the industry, but be careful what you write on your page!

Well, no rest for the wicked. I have to dive back into rehearsals for our upcoming dance production, DANCE DESIGN. If you’re in Queensland in March, send me an email and I’ll let you know more info and perhaps we can ‘network’!

Logging off…

CALLUM : D

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