By Stephanie Ciccarelli
December 30, 2009
Whenever people talk about resolutions, they usually are referring to their own personal set of objectives they resolve to accomplish in the coming year.
What if we as a community tried to observe some common resolutions that would make voice over an even better, more productive and prosperous industry?
Join me now in our countdown to 2010 with some industry-wide resolutions!
As we approach 2010, I thought it would be worthwhile to ponder resolutions that we might all try to adopt as a community...
We are all here for such a short time and our purpose is to love. Remember that each and every person you meet is a child of God who has worth. Regardless of who you encounter, however brief the exchange, be ready to greet them with respect, patience and dignity. Be generous and approach each situation with an open heart. From the people you meet to the situations you find yourself in, everything happens for a reason.
Be someone you would be proud to know. By living in the present and focusing on the positive you will be a source of good in this world and set an example for others. Similarly, engage in positive business relationships. Work with people who want to lift you up, who inspire you and believe in what you do. Reciprocate. Lift others up, inspire them and believe in their careers.
Show interest in other voice over professionals and people who work in the greater audio industry. Get out to events, take part in teleseminars or start a networking group local to your city to bring complementary product and service providers together. One of the most admired aspects of voice over is how strong and closely knit our community is. Let 2010 be the year your circle expands to welcome others such as audio recording engineers, producers, voice directors, instructors, musicians, actors, copy writers and more.
Voice acting is relative to a solo sport. The only person you are competing with is yourself. If you've been measuring your gifts relative to those of others now is the time to stop. Your voice, life experiences, education and soul are unique. No one person shares the exact same path. Embrace your own voice, your own business and the customers you can serve.
What do you value? Family, health, morality? Whatever it is that you hold dear, be sure to not only hold those values but deliver on those values by making them true priorities in your life. If this means quoting higher rates, turning down jobs that go against your personal beliefs or spending less of your day on the Internet and reserving that time for your loved ones instead, honour them.
For many people 2009, and perhaps the years that came before, have been particularly challenging. The economy is improving, a new year is dawning and opportunities await you. Believe in yourself, stand firm and place your hope in things that last. Whether it is a financial challenge, a personal struggle or something that seems to be out of your control do not be afraid. Everything happens for a reason.
As a Christian, both my trust and hopes are placed in Jesus who is my strength and refuge. I am nothing without Him but everything with Him. People don't usually talk about spirituality or associate it with their businesses because it can often be a source of controversy or alienation. That being said, expressing my faith, both personally and professionally, gives me strength and the having of it empowers me to do good and lift others up through VOX Daily, Voices.com and in my community.
Perhaps this is the year that your faith, whatever that faith may be, takes a prominent place in your business. Have courage!
If you've spent any time on this earth, it's no secret that there are opinions and perspectives that differ from those of your own. Perhaps you don't agree with some of what I've said. While you may not agree with what someone says, have the heart to try and see from their perspective and understand where they are coming from. That doesn't mean that you need to compromise on your own beliefs and opinions... it simply means that you respect them as a person and can agree to disagree. This will also help to make you a better communicator and diplomat.
Do your kids want to do voice over? Are there children, teenagers or college students who you see potential in? Just as you hope to be scouted or heard by agents, people just starting out or who show potential need cheerleaders who can help them identify their talent and encourage them to excel. Are you that person? Are you helping to lead, educate or inspire the next generation of voice over professionals? Keep in mind that guidance counselors are not usually recommending that a student become a voice over artist. Think of a youth you know who may enter our field... the only person who might offer that kind of guidance and direction to them may be you.
Just as your car needs a regular tuneup, your voice over career needs a regular tuneup, too. If you have children in the school system or are a teacher, you also know that there are a number of "professional development" days on the calendar that are set aside for teachers to come together and learn of new teaching techniques, procedures and or curricula. People who work for businesses often find opportunities to grow in their position through professional development. Voice acting is no different. Treat your education as a business expense. Go to at least one educational event per year that either improves your current skills or helps you to develop new ones. If you can manage it, educate yourself quarterly in a formal setting and also take the time to educate yourself every day informally through podcasts, blogs, and industry news.
Move with purpose and penetrate the darkness with your light. While you may only see yourself as a voice over artist, remember that you also can play the role of teacher, mentor, role model, advocate, cheerleader, connector, adviser and the list goes on. Be noble, live with integrity and be generous. Be a blessing to others.
Looking forward to your comments on or additions to the list!
May 2010 bless you and yours abundantly with health, prosperity and happiness.
Happy New Year!
Stephanie and the Voices.com Team