Last week I tweeted that I had some time to help people with their presenter demos. I got 7 emails over the next few days with people asking for feedback on their demo. Which I thought was actually quite good. I’ve done various talks and workshops to people who claim they want to work in music and radio over the years. You ask how many people want to work in the industry and all 30 people in the class stick their hand up. You leave all your contact details and say, “Send me your demos and we’ll work on them.” You’ll get, at most, 2 out of 30 sending you anything. If you’re lucky.
Now of course, maybe you don’t like my style of presenting? Maybe you don’t like my take on presenting? Maybe you think I’m a terrible presenter?
You ask yourself, “Why the f**k would I want this guy guiding me?”
That’s cool. That’s part of the deal when you get into this type of work. You get confident and comfortable in yourself. Do your best and leave the rest.
But this is not just my experience. A friend recently did a talk to 50 people who wanted to work in music management. This person is a manager with various artists in the industry. One in particular is a giant star. They’ve sold millions of albums around the world. Again, she left her details for anybody who wanted to reach out. How many people contacted her afterwards? One. That’s mental. She’s awesome with bags to teach. It was a gift. And one person got in contact to ask for more advice and work experience.
If you’ve got ambition and you want to work in any industry I can’t tell you how much benefit you’ll get from having someone guide you and give you feedback. Call them a mentor. Call them an advisor. Call them whatever you want. In fact get a couple of mentors to give you advice while you’re at it. Get greedy with getting the information you need.
They can’t promise you jobs. They can’t promise you anything really. Nothing is guaranteed. But they might spur you on to get better. They might hear of a placement somewhere, and think of you first.
Don’t think it’s uncool to ask for help. Don’t let your pride get in the way of you developing your goals. You’re not wasting people’s time with a question now and again. Here’s the kicker.
MOST PEOPLE WANT TO HELP YOU.
They’re just super busy. So don’t take it personally if someone forgets you emailed. Gently remind them a week later and ask if they’ve had time to read your email. But what if they don’t reply?
Nothing is lost. Don’t sweat it. Don’t take it too seriously. You email the next person on the list who you want to hear from. And you keep going.
This all takes time and effort. I know because I’ve done it. And I continue to do it 15 years after I did it the first time. Not everybody wants to put the work in. It’s easier to coast. But it’s not as much fun as working towards something you really want.
If you want to email me radio demos or ask any questions on anything I do: firstname.lastname@example.org