Everyday, I counsel people who have dug the proverbial grave for
themselves because of the manner in which they comport themselves
or conduct business. I have written this article in order to
impart what my years in the worlds of law, business and
metaphysics have taught me. These "9 Golden Rules" are
simply tools for creating a more positive and productive
professional life. I hope you find them helpful.
Do Not Lie
Your word and reputation are
priceless commodities in an industry riddled with hype and lying
wannabes. Be truthful no matter the consequences and you will
stand out as a person of integrity.
example, do not tell sales agents you have an actor attached, when
you do not. The truth eventually catches up with you and you may
face: losing your credibility, being permanently shunned by the
actor and/or her agent, and/or may have a legal claim filed
against you for having made the misrepresentation.
Do Not Steal
If it is not yours,
then do not take it be it an idea, an equity contact, a piece of
equipment, or otherwise.
example, someone shares an idea for a screenplay with you, which
you usurp, rationalizing that it happens all the time or, in fact,
has happened to you. If you are completely passionate about the
idea and you cannot get it out of your system, then ask the
disclosing party if he would mind partnering up with you. If the
disclosing party declines, despite your passion for the project,
move on knowing that the Universe is full of ideas ready for the
picking. If you go on and steal the idea, you may not able to
warrant and represent that the idea is wholly original to you,
when called upon to do so. Furthermore, the disclosing party may
file a legal claim against you for breach of an implied contract.
Be Fair/Do Not Be Greedy
People tend to
assert their power in a deal when they are in the power position.
Avoid the temptation to squeeze the last penny, or deal term, out
of a negotiation if the aforementioned does not affect you
negatively, and if it is going to result in someone being treated
unfairly. Remember, everyone has to work together when the deal is
done. Resentment is going to permeate your relationship with the
unfairly treated party; it is virtually impossible to have a
positive working relationship with someone who resents you.
Do Not Gossip
Gossip can ruin a
personís career, business relationships and personal life. Do
not succumb to the temptation to gossip, even if the information
is based in fact, because everyone (you included) has done, or
will do, something regretful. If you decide to proceed, remember
that the gossiper rarely makes a good impression: the person with
whom you share the gossip will wonder if you will ever do the same
to her, and you may be perceived as a liar, back stabber and petty
Treat People The Way You Want To Be Treated
You need as many
people in your corner as possible when you are on the rise. Treat
everyone from the assistant to the studio executive with respect,
kindness and honesty. People may put up with arrogance and
attitude from a director whose movies gross over $100 million
dollars at the box office, but they do not have to tolerate the
same from a nobody. In other words, be the kind of person people
want to know and with whom they want to work.
assistants and the junior agents are the gatekeepers for the
people to whom you need access. Make allies of the gatekeepers by
being pleasant and sensitive to the stresses of their job. They
will be more apt to assist you if you are friendly and respectful
to them. It is also important for you to note that the assistant
to whom you are speaking today may be the studio executive with
the ability to green light your picture tomorrow.
Lend A Helping Hand
Function as if
opportunity is abundant and it will be so. Share information and
contacts when called to do so. It is perfectly acceptable to
decline this request if this referral is going to be detrimental
to you i.e., the referral will reflect badly on you.
Keep Your Commitments
People tend to make
commitments they do not honor for a myriad of selfish reasons. You
need to be able to depend on people just as much as they need to
depend on you. Keep your word unless the object of your promise is
illegal, immoral, or likely to harm someone other than yourself.
If you decide that you cannot keep your commitment, then be mature
and up front about it so that the other party can make other
The Universe is
like a saving account --you have to make deposits if you want
continue making withdrawals. Make time to share your
accomplishments with others: be a mentor, make referrals,
executive produce a film for an up-and-coming filmmaker, give to
charity, be a speaker at your childís school career day, etc.
Working in the film
industry is full of complications and stress. Why complicate
matters further by being dishonest, undignified and unfair?
Approach your business dealings from a positive place and you are
more likely to succeed, and enjoy your success.
This article is not a complete review of the subject matter and,
as such, the reader should not make decisions on the basis of the
above without consulting with an attorney.
You may also contact the author for any query concerning
this article : firstname.lastname@example.org