Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Adapt or Die

One thing that is crucial as a personal assistant, writer or really any job at all (but especially in entertainment) is that you must adapt or die. It's imperative that you you stay on the cutting edge or you will be left behind. There are a couple of important ways to do this:

1) Stay Up-To-Date & Interested in the World:

As I have stated multiple times, you have to stay current on what's going on in the world and that doesn't just mean Variety, EW, Gawker and Deadline Hollywood Daily. It means you need to listen to NPR, watch CNN, read blogs or magazines on a variety of topics (technology, fashion, etc.). Even if you aren't that into things like technology, you can't be left behind on where the world is headed. Even if you aren't into Twitter, read about it, know what it is and sign up to follow a few people and/or tweet. You don't have to be crack addicted like I am, but you need to be in the loop.

2) Network Online and Offline:

This is a deal breaker for your career, if you won't do it. Especially in this economy you just have no choice. I didn't want to join Facebook, but I'm looking for a job and trying to build a writing career, so I did it. Join Linked In even if you aren't currently on the job hunt. Get on popular boards that pertain to your field and answer questions and help people when you can. Make yourself the go to person for specific thing. One way I'm trying to make myself valuable is helping people, sharing knowledge on this blog about gifts, ways to be productive and good at your job. I'm also a writer, but this is one way I can help others. I'm not getting paid, but I'm making new contacts and helping people and you never know where that can lead. As mentioned above, get on twitter or at least check it out. It's a great resource for being in the know and sharing info.

Dana Brunetti/Triggerstreet & Wil Wheaton are great examples of the ability to adapt and thrive because of it. Here's why:

Wil Wheaton - He was once and still is a great actor (his criminal minds ep was an example of that), but when his acting career wasn't as busy as he wanted it to be, he reinvented himself as a fantastic blogger (when nobody really even had coined that phrase yet) and writer. He writes columns, books, he blogs, he's HUGE on twitter (over 400,000 followers) and much more. I'm getting exhausted just thinking about it. He went out and created an additional career path. He adapted instead of feeling sorry for himself.

Dana Brunetti/Triggerstreet - Dana Brunetti was once Kevin Spacey's assistant. Since I have done that type of job and know what it requires, it doesn't surprise me at all that he and Kevin's company have succeeded. Personal assistants tend to be resourceful and creative types. He now runs Kevin's company and it has thrived because he has constantly adapted and changed, so that the company is always in touch with what's current. They created Triggerstreet (a online community for writers, filmmakers, etc.), he does a video podcast, he's on Twitter and he got Kevin on Twitter. As a production company, they have made smaller, more heartfelt movies like Fanboys and studio movies like 21 (that was based on this Wired article and Ben Mezrich's great book Bringing Down the House -- see people read interesting stuff, it helps). By keeping himself and the company on the cutting edge he has kept them thriving for a long time.

1 comment:

  1. Could not agree more...I've always been very PR conscious for my interiors and lifestyle business but thought FB and other social networking sites were basically pick up joints ;-) hanged my mind when I found out the truly amazing people and information I could find on Twitter