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Thinking Like a Business: Can Actors Actually Do That?

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Can actors think like a business? Will that get in the way of their craft? Will not doing it doom them to failure? Is there a sweet spot?

What's the Problem?

The problem is both educational and cultural. We have been educated using the 19th century Prussian educational model which is designed to create soldiers and factory workers. Not very conducive for artistic, self-employed, self-determining, entrepreneurs. The other problem is cultural. We have been raised in a American Idol, Chorus Line, God I hope I get it, audition-and-pray, if you're not a star you're a loser, environment. Also not very helpful.

People think they have to get discovered, that they have to get their big break, that they have to get lucky to be effective and successful and that's just not true. If you're going to depend on that to be successful you may have to wait for a long time.

How Actors Can Think Like a Business

Examine your assumptions to manage your expectations

What are your assumptions about yourself? What are your assumptions about the entertainment industry? What are your assumptions about what your relationship is or could be with the entertainment industry?

Your assumptions influence your expectations and it's extremely important for you to manage your expectations. You need to understand how you work and how you don't work, how you operate how you don't operate, and this will influence your decision making process.

Make business decisions based on facts, not your feelings

You need to have facts. You need to have data. You need to be able to analyze and understand what's going on in the industry and what's going on inside yourself. The ability to metacognate, which is where you stand outside of yourself and look at yourself from the outside objectively so you can make objective data-driven fact-based decisions about your acting career.

Be realistic about your talent, your resources, and your life situation

  • Be realistic about your talent (or lack of talent)

  • Be realistic about the resources that you have (or don't have)

  • Be realistic about what the logistics of your life are

  • Be realistic about the skill sets that you have (or don't have)

  • Figure out what exactly you need to be effective

Keep Going - Watch this Trailer:

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Tom Dheere

He's the VO Strategist, a voice over business & marketing coach and demo producer since 2011. Tom Dheere is also a voice actor with over 25 years of experience who has narrated just about every type of voiceover you can think of. When not voicing or talking about voicing, Tom produces the sci-fi comic book Agent 1.22.


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