Sunday, January 13, 2008

Professional Voice Talent Behavior

This is a note about professionalism. As a professional female voice talent for many years who strives to conduct my business in the most professional way possible, I'm always surprised to hear about talent who miss the mark in their professionalism. I worked with a producer the other day who shared a tidbit with me about his experience with an online agent/professional voice talent web site. He was pretty steamed because after he had selected a gen Y talent and actually booked the session, he was then informed that the voice over talent was not available. So, he made a second selection and the same thing happened again. When he questioned the agency as to why they didn't know their talent was unavailable, their excuse was that "well, you know, he's only 20 and didn't let us know......" It made the online agent look pretty incompetent because they didn't know their talent was unavailable (twice!) And I'm sure they turned around and got on the cases of both voice over talents who were unavailable without bothering to let the agent know of their status!

We can all make mistakes and slip up from time to time, but it's so important to stop and think of each and every agent online or in person who represents you and have the business courtesy to let them know when you unavailable. When your agent doesn't know, not only does it make them look bad, but your future bookings may suffer as well. That producer will probably not ask for the voice over services of those two unavailable talents again, and he may not even work with that agent in the future! So, everyone is burned. Professionalism often equates to common courtesy - something that is often lacking in many business situations today. Customer service, knowledgeable response, or even just a response of some type is appreciated on both producers' and professional voice overs' sides of the fence!

On that note, how many times have you emailed an audition or even a voice file for a job to a producer and not received a confirmation that the producer received it? As a professional voice talent, I usually send another email double checking to make sure the file was received - especially in the case of a job. With the way things can get lost in cyberspace, I don't take for granted that I'll receive a bounce back message or an email looking for the spot. Follow up and customer service are as important as being there and being available for the job in the first place!

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