You ARE Me.

Hi – here is the thing about the business. We don’t work in a vacuum.

No matter what aspect you are working in. Low budge, big budget, indie, studio, commercials, docs, short films, webisodics, corporate, etc. Unless you are the client, you work for someone. This means you are the person you work for.

It isn’t limited to the film business. I hate when I go to a store, and the employees just say “They.” I went to Home Depot last week to look for Patio furniture – asked one of the associates where it was and he said, “Oh it used to be over there, but they moved it.” Who the F**K are they? Don’t you work here? Aren’t you “THEY” Yes you are “THEY” you work there I do not. Oh you mean MANAGEMENT moved it, or had it moved you mean – management doesn’t often do physical stuff – You work for the store, you ARE the store. I really hate when I here a store employee tell me it is “THEM.” Home Depot isn’t alone i this, Sadly Lowes employees do it to – I pointed out to one employee/associate that the contractor discount pack of floro bulbs cost more per unit than buying them in smaller quantities. The response ” Oh you can go to the website and let THEM know.” Damnit, this is not satisfying. DO SOMETHING HERE. TAKE RESPONSIBILITY. You muck heads – blaming someone else is not customer service, and you are not doing your JOB. You are costing your boss money by making me want to go do my shopping elsewhere.

What does all this have to do with the film business??????

I work for someone, I AM THAT PERSON. How I act reflects upon the person I work for. Even if I’m not on set. I can’t bad mouth them, or make them look bad. If I make an off color comment and the client doesn’t like it, that reflects badly on my boss. Make my boss look bad, they don’t hire me again. I’ve learned that the hard way – but read on and you’ll get it for free.

Hey it was a little joke, nothing racy, but I was joking around with the director during the shoot, the director who later told me the client had heard it, and it made the director look bad. So the director never hired me again. A little much you think, but no I understand. Your reputation is EVERYTHING in this business (every business.) You can be good, you can be great, but be hard to work with, it will hurt you. Embarrass your boss, they won’t hire you again, because it is their reputation you’re damaging.

Hey you can joke around with me on set, but make fun of me, you make me look bad. I’m a fool to hire you again. I’ve had to apologize to a producer for bringing on someone who wasn’t ready, and was causing me problems. I said “Today’s their last day”, he replied “good, otherwise its yours.” Chilling. So obvious I suppose. Here is the thing to consider.

It isn’t only on set that what you do reflects on me. You hire me, I’ve got to behave well. I’ve really got to behave as YOU behave. On set and off. Okay, if you’re a jackass, I’m not going to be one. But how I work, how I behave after work, it gets back to people. So I’ve got to consider my boss when I’m on set, and off. I am their representative. Likewise if I bring you on, or recommend you, your actions reflect on me. If your an ass, it isn’t you that is the ass, it is me, because I hired you, or I recommended you. And if we’re working on a TYLENOL commercial, don’t go “F**king” mouthing off about how Advil is soooo much better in front of the client. Understand TONY?????

Ooops, that slipped out. Sorry Tony didn’t mean to burn you.

I worked with a company when I started out – “Broadcast Arts”, it is where I met my Mentor (or as close as I got to having a mentor he is great) – Glen Claybrook. One day Broadcast Arts was doing a commercial for one Cereal company, while on the same day Broadcast Arts was also shooting another commercial for a different cereal company. Now I’m sure it’s obvious that if you are working on a Pepsi commercial, there will never be a Coke Product on the craft service table – the crew had also better be aware that they can’t bring a coke product onto the set – and G-d forbid if you all go out to lunch – if the client is there and the restaurant doesn’t have Pepsi – STICK TO WATER. So here is this company, shooting a commercial for two competing companies – thankfully they had two stages on different sides of the buildings. But there was actually security. Seriously, not deep or heavy, but the stages were closed, and going from one part of the studio to another, you were warned not bring anything with you.

Screw up, and it gets back to people, screw up, and it doesn’t just screw you, it screws the person who hires you, Sadly it ain’t only on set. If you are on location, you may have stopped working, you may be off the clock, but you are still representing the person who hired you. You can’t go telling off the client, or the talent, or the subject of the Doc what you think of them, or their product. Just drink your drink, and shut your mouth. I respect that everyone has their own opinion, but if you ain’t the boss, don’t go shooting your mouth off if you don’t have anything positive to say, don’t go getting drunk and acting like an ass, and read the call sheet so you don’t show up wearing a Coke T-shirt on a Pepsi Shoot. Got that TONY, understand now?

Thanks for reading, feel free to comment, and subscribe if you want.

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