Professionalism in the workplace

As i enter the film industry, I increasingly feel crazy. Like a loon. Like I am the only one in the industry that has high expectations of all those that work alongside me. The people around me are making me feel like i’m a nut for having the values that I do when it comes to work place etiquette. Is professionalism nonexistent in this industry? Should I stop expecting certain behavior of my colleagues that ascribe to unstructured schedules, loose deadlines, and interactive environments? Let me explain.

I staunchly believe that there is a certain standard that we should all meet when in the workplace. Now I’m open and understanding so I get that these standards may vary based upon the industry. For example, my girlfriend is in corporate education. She is expected to be ten minutes early or she’s late. She is expected to show up to work in slacks every day and strive to meet daily number-based goals or she will be reprimanded. Though not explicitly stated, she is expected to be efficacious and maintain personal goals and ask questions when she doesn’t understand something. And above all else, she is expected to meet deadlines.

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In the entertainment industry, 9-5’s are few and far between. Dress codes are nonexistent. Respect for time is not something to be expected or earned but rather begged for. Setting goals aren’t necessarily implied and to be self efficacious is unheard of. To have something before a deadline? Forget it. How about by the deadline? ha.

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I honestly don’t think that I ask for much. As a producer, I often delegate, manage, maintain and ensure projects run smoothly. With these responsibilities, I must rely upon many people around me. And as you’ve probably gathered, I have high expectations; I run a tight ship.

I’ve heard many times before from my superiors that this sort of behavior is a Pittsburgh thing. After working many years in film in LA, he says that Pittsburgh talent and crew are often difficult to work with. I’ve seen this in action, however I have nothing to compare it to like he does. With talent, for example, I think that actors should treat acting as though it’s their profession, as though their livelihood depends upon it (even though it often doesn’t in Pittsburgh). You don’t work 9-5 as an actor, granted, but as an aspiring director I absolutely grasp the importance of constant training. If you aren’t honing your craft then you are letting it lie there stagnant. And yes, if you don’t use it you lose it. A Pittsburgh thing, I’m assured, some actors book a gig and show up knowing their lines, front and back, thinking that it’s enough.

 

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Wrong. I want to let you in on a little secret, guys-us producers and directors are vastly aware of your non-training. You really can’t fool us. I work every day of the week, Monday thru Sunday in order to ensure that the production you star in goes off with a bang; shouldn’t you be working Monday thru Sunday, too? I guess this is the entertainment industry version of professionalism, or lack there of I should say.

There are a lot of gray areas and variations. For example, on-set/production etiquette is not something that is implied, as one would think. If you want cast and crew to respect a set, abide by rules and be aware of damaging anything- you’ve got to say so. If you don’t want cast and crew to drink or do drugs on set, you’ve got to tell them that. That’s a novel concept, don’t you think? Explicitly telling your employees that they can’t do illegal things on your property, whilst you’re liable. Entering the industry with a business mindset has been the source of many of my frustrations; because of my professional and managerial knowledge, I know better and I expect more.

 

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Is professionalism lost in the industry? Should I just cut my losses and adapt? I feel as though I’ve already abandoned many of my own values thus far in order to better communicate, prioritize, and accomplish goals. When are we going to insert a little bit of business and professionalism into a a production environment? Is that crazy to crave more structure? Or is it truly indicative of the Pittsburgh film industry?

I need thoughts. I’m sick of feeling like an over-reacting lunatic.

 

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Producers of Sentient to move forward with exciting new strategy

Great news for our company!

DeepCea Entertainment

News Release

October 6th, 2014                                                                                    Raquel Bouvy, Producer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                          rb@deepcea.com

Sentient producers to move forward with exciting new strategy

PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA – Sentient is a medical drama series produced by Pittsburgh production company DeepCea Entertainment. Conceptualized by writer, director, producer Mark Cross in early 2014, Sentient has since evolved into an indestructible franchise, including synergetic characterization, wide-ranging story arcs, an accompanying graphic novel, and innovative marketing collateral. In the…

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An Anti-Feminist Walks Into a Bar: A Play in Five Acts

Brilliant!

Whatever

PROLOGUE

ACT I

ACT II

ACT III

ACT IV

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A woman in a man’s world.

Hollywood has always been a male-dominated arena. As of 2014, women make up just 16% of the behind the scenes entertainment workforce. Is anybody surprised by that fact? With all the buzz of Emma Watson’s recent feminism speech at the UN, I thought I’d throw my hat into the ring. Here’s my two cents on it all, being a woman in a man’s world.

Being a young woman in the entertainment industry, I’ve never given my career path a second thought, or have felt as though I wouldn’t be given ample opportunity. Chop it up to my over confidence, or my overwhelming belief in success, or my strong Dad-who always brought me up to believe that anything my brother could do, I could do…better. Whatever it may be, I have always felt as an equal in my own right even though college courses, statistics, and tenacious professors insist differently.

I’ve always felt that I could have my cake and eat it, too…or sandwich. Either way, Tina, either way.

Well known feminist Gloria Steinem appeals to the feminist in me by saying “Women are always saying, ‘We can do anything that men can do.’ But men should be saying, ‘We can do anything that women can do.’” I think this is far from what Watson preached in her #heforshe campaign speech. And it’s not how feminism should be viewed, either. Sorry, Gloria-you’re dated, I’m going to jump on the HP bandwagon.

In her recent speech, Watson had the sagacity to understand that equality will continue to be elusive unless men are, in her words, “invited or feel welcome to participate in the conversation.” That we can’t affect change in the world when half of it is seemingly unwelcome. In order to begin to initiate that change, and affect the latter audience we must begin to perceive gender on a spectrum and not as two opposing sets of ideals. This is how I see feminism. This is the part of me that says if my Director wants to cry in front of me because he had a hard day, he shouldn’t feel ashamed to do so, that if I need to fire somebody, give an order, or speak up so that I may exude strength, power and courage I should feel free of all doubt and judgment.

A good friend iterates that sexuality is fluid and I believe so too should gender. Just hear me out here because this is the future talking. Stereotypes are utterly damaging. We’ve all been marginalized at some point during our lives-be it from poverty, sexuality, race, gender, etc. The marginalization happening to this day is on account of vast and seemingly unavoidable stereotyping behavior (encouraged by the media-don’t even get me started on that). And the spectrum that Watson suggests seeks to disencumber these. If we stop defining each other by what we are not and start defining ourselves by what we are—we can all be freer. Freer to cry when the situation calls for it. Freer to be a dick when somebody deserves it. Freer to be sensitive to opposing ideals. Freer to feel the abandon and euphoria that pours over you when you stop worrying about what other people think of you.

Watson’s speech provides a courageous start for us all. We’re headed in the right direction, but the entertainment industry and I’m assuming most other industries still have a ways to go. Those 16% of women have all felt unequal at some point or another. Even that fearless little girl brought up by her Dad to believe that she was always just one of the boys has felt it. I think I’m one of the truly lucky ones though because I work with such caring men that have very very seldom made me feel small. They nearly see things on a spectrum and very often allow me to take control, be the leader, and close deals with powerful men in the industry, which has ultimately allowed me to grow and become more confident. Sometimes a little too confident. Do you hear me, Mark and Gary? You’re creating a monster!! If all men in the entertainment industry were like Mark and Gary-willing, open, and encouraging of women in a leadership position-the world could very well be an unrecognizable place.

Some crazy interesting quotes, articles, and more:

“So what I love about feminism is that it seems like an irrefutable concept, which is equality, caring for each other, supporting each other, looking out for each other and being strong in the face of a lot of societal factors that are telling us to sit down and shut up.” Lena Dunham

The official journal of the National Organization for Women printed in January 1988: “The simple fact is that every woman must be willing to be identified as a lesbian to be fully feminist.” Ti-Grace Atkinson, an early member of NOW who founded the group The Feminists, added, “Feminism is the theory, lesbianism is the practice.”

Lena- you are my idol. NOW-that’s some bullshit.