No Political Affiliations Needed or Wanted

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No political affiliations needed or even wanted when you are hired to design, build or work a network political event.

In today’s polarized world, frontline production people have to learn to put their personal beliefs aside and focus on the gig. I’m not saying you need to change or compromise your beliefs just focus on the task.

We all find ourselves working on or for a network we don’t necessarily agree with their programming. Maybe it’s a concert that we dislike the music. A film or episodic we think is stupid or without merit.

 But a gig is a gig and sometimes that pay check or learning opportunity is more important than your opinion. As I have written many times, you never know who you are going to be working. There could be someone on that gig that may kick your career to a new level.

You may learn a new trick or operate piece of gear that will change the trajectory of your career.

It’s not selling out, it’s buying into advancing your career and opportunities.

We all have personal belief lines we will not cross and I get that.

I’m not suggesting you need to cross that line.

I’m just presenting a professional point of view that might help you weight a decision when it comes to expanding your career.

I have worked on and remain friends with staff production people at Fox News and CNN. We have worked the Democratic National Convention and then gone straight to the Republican National Convention.

I have worked on Christian music videos and death metal concerts. That doesn’t make me a sellout. It just means I know how to separate my personal beliefs from gig.

Although, after consider the gig opportunity and the gig messaging, I have walked away from gigs that I thought were way to extreme.  I didn’t want to put my stamp on the gig and help make it successful.

The point I am tip toeing around is, if you’re new to the biz or just getting started don’t turn down a great opportunity before you really look into the actual production aspects of the opportunity. Don’t think that everyone hired on the production side believes in the message.

Remember in the end, we are in the entertainment biz and even the news is part of that “biz”.  And all businesses need to make money selling their product. Keep that in mind when your evaluating the gig against their perceived message. It’s all about selling their product to their audience.

Here is a less intense yet similar analogy. I have worked on hundreds of sports programming gigs, covering teams I had rooted against as a fan for years. When I am hired to produce a sports’ show I don’t have to be a fan, just need to be good at what I do.

I’ve worked countless music concerts. Many of the acts I’ve trashed forever hanging out with my friends. But when the lights go up and mics go on it’s just another show. I don’t have to be a fan to do my job.

On the flip side there were times when my ideals did weigh in.  I was a digital engineer at a large defense company working on extremely exciting tech. I went there with the purpose of learning how large engineering companies operated.

 Once i acquired most of that knowledge I bolted. Why? 

Because I got the basics of what I needed. Yet, I could have learned a ton more if I stayed longer but I didn’t want to continue contributing to building killing machines.

 Balance… balance… balance. Acquiring knowledge verse ideals.

Before you think your selling out, evaluate the opportunity and search for a balance. If in the end you find your ideals are worth more than what you will acquire in skills and contacts, then walk away and don’t look back.

Just always take breath and do some real evaluations and see if there is an equilibrium point that fits.  99% of the time there will be! 

You should never be asked to sacrifice your ideals. 

You should just be asked do the task you were hired to do and stay away from the politics.

Fast track your entertainment production career