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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricky business » » Learning about the unknown known (2 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

WDavis
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On my other thread about business cards and corporate work, Thomas R said:

Quote:
On Apr 13, 2017, thomasR wrote:
When I helped plan variety entertainment for small company picnics, and company retreats I thought that was "working corporate shows" as well.

Then another company I work started sending me out to do lighting design for real corporate events.... The difference is huge.


I am starting this new thread so not derail the other, and I believe listening to someone's story about when they realized what they thought they knew was wrong and how they adapted and grew is of immense value to the members here.

Thomas would you please post your story as to how the realization came about. If possible, use the framework below:
1. The start (what you were doing, who it was for, when did this happen, where regionallly, why you thought the way you did)
2. The key drivers that opened your eyes to the misconception
3. How you assimilated the new knowledge (any problems that came from it and how you overcame them)
4. What where the key take aways you learned and how have they helped you grow to where you are now

Thanks Walter
Dannydoyle
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Can anyone share? Because I have a LOT of examples of this sort of learning.
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
thomasR
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Sure thing....
1. The start (what you were doing, who it was for, when did this happen, where regionallly, why you thought the way you did)

Producing circus / magic / variety entertainment for a variety of clients. It was my own company that I started 10 years ago. While I do sometimes perform magic, I'm usually just the "producer" of the entertainment... so the client comes to me and I arrange the talent for them. Aerialists, Acrobats, Jugglers, Contortion, Stilt Walking, Magic, Illusionist, all of that type of stuff. Mostly I am hired by city festivals who want multiple entertainers for events. The Cities have a decent budget and the planners don't want to contract with 7 or 8 solo performers and handle multiple contracts and deposits... so I provide them with one contract, one contact, and they get all the entertainers they need... and they also get higher quality entertainers then who they could find locally.

Early on I would be contacted for company picnics, company retreats, Holiday Parties.... and I provided entertainment for them. I just assumed that was "Corporate Work" - No reason why I thought that... just because company were hiring me for company functions. I still refer to those events as "little corporate shows" - that's just what I call them.

***2. The key drivers that opened your eyes to the misconception

Other than reading it on the Magic Café? haha... My main career is as a lighting designer for concerts and events. I work full time for a management company that has me design lights for their artists and events... while mostly what I do is concert style lighting.. I've done a few major corporate events for them. Seeing what a real corporate event is, for a real fortune 500 company... I got it.

***3. 3. How you assimilated the new knowledge (any problems that came from it and how you overcame them)
***4. What where the key take aways you learned and how have they helped you grow to where you are now

No problems... I ran lights for the events. And then realized that what I was producing was not "corporate entertainment" on that scale.

My circus / variety arts company is more of a hobby than anything at this point... I had wanted to grow it into a career, but the lighting keeps me quite busy. I still do a few events a year.. including a city festival that has hired me for 5 years in a row...

So my situation is pretty unique obviously. Everything I've done with the circus has taught me valuable lessons if I ever make it into a career, or decide to do magic as a career in future years. I would like to get into performing again... and I think I could take my knowledge and build a good career performing. Time will only tell if I make that happen.
Mindpro
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Lets face it, the process of becoming a performer or entertainer is where many of these problems begin. There is not formal education or qualification process to be a performer. One simply gets an initial interest, learns about it, perhaps acquires some equipment or accessories, practices their discipline and then at some point self-anoints themselves a performer or entertainer (and often times "a professional."

It's all based on this flimsy premise. Are they really entertainers, usually no. Are they usually professionals, again usually not. It's all a self-declaration. Then at some point they decide to perform for pay, usually accepting any type of booking they can get and walla - they are an entertainer! Like magic!

It is quite easy to see how there are so many problems delusions, and false beliefs and perceptions. Then when someone comes along to provide actual industry information and perspective, of course they oppose and resist. Few are vested enough to want to then learn the realities from a real true industry perspective and professional.

This is where the big divide begins. It continues on every level on nearly every topic from there. As I say in my materials at this point there are two types of people - those that "get it" and those that don't. Then there are those that want to earn these realities and those that don't or resist. We all see what happens from here.

The change in entertainment over the past decade or two is how performers deal with or address this issue. For generations many WANTED to learn about this - anything from anyone they could. Today, they prefer to not want to hear from others who know, and seem to would fight and defend their limited knowledge and self-taught, self-belief premises.

This is also why so many clients and consumers are not being properly informed or educated because the knowledge and understanding simply isn't there from most performers. When guys ask me "how can you book 8-9 out of every 10 inquiries that come in?" It is because of having this knowledge and being able to use and communicate this properly.

As I discuss on most of my books, courses, live training events and coaching, I listened to those before me, I picked their brains relentlessly to learn every morsel of information on literally every corner of the industry, now I am reaping the benefits of this knowledge and education. That is the difference.

Get the facts, learn the real information. It makes everything so much better and productive and your relationship with customers and clients will change more than imagined.
Dannydoyle
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I have had SEVERAL of this type of epiphany's! So many that I have started to look for them.

The first one was when I was about 19. I started working at Magic Inc. Seeing magic as a business as opposed to going in and buying tricks was absolutely enlightening.

About that same time I had another. It was working at Schulien's. Having eaten at restaurants and being about 19 I already knew everything.
The eye opening part was when I started to learn about "paper cost" and such things. Learning about draft vs bottle, vs mixed drinks cost and sales was just enlightening. Food cost, laundering of linen, electric, insurance and on and on. HOLY cow learning that many of those bills pile up whether you open or not was interesting. Learning how to be out of the way of servers, how restaurants had to flow properly to make money and so forth. I learned that a well run business of any sort is often not about the thing we think it is, such as a restaurant and food.

Then in later years even after having learned this in Key Largo dealing with personnel issues and schedules and deeper into food cost and so forth. Having figured I already knew I learned WAY MORE! So I had 2 of this type of epiphanies on the same subject!!!

That was when I learned how to run a business and what it was about doing so. I was fortunate that almost everyone there was a successful business owner. Being young (35) and eager and in the infancy of business myself they graciously taught me. It was easy for me to see what I needed to learn. I had so many fantastic examples of people who just by being there were so incredibly helpful.

THE most important thing I learned was how to fail and the power of failure. We learn far more from failure than from success. THAT is tough to learn. I had so many people tell me that behind every successful company they own they have 4 failed efforts. (That is the main difference in that experience and the online expert crowd. NONE of them ever seem to fail.) Failure only truly happens when you don't learn from it. EVERY successful business person I have ever run into can tell you stories of failure. The exact opposite of all the online puffery seen.

In many ways being a performer is very difficult and more than many other types of businesses. There is no real blueprint for doing it. Plus you have to grow and allow for this. You don't just show up good enough to do corporate shows and high end theater gigs. It doesn't work that way.

But like any business you just can't be afraid to try. You can't be discouraged if you fail.
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Mindpro
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Quote:
On Apr 13, 2017, Dannydoyle wrote:

THE most important thing I learned was how to fail and the power of failure. We learn far more from failure than from success.

(That is the main difference in that experience and the online expert crowd. NONE of them ever seem to fail.) Failure only truly happens when you don't learn from it. EVERY successful business person I have ever run into can tell you stories of failure. The exact opposite of all the online puffery seen.



Man so much truth, experience and wisdom in this post.

I often say and explain to those I work with you can learn far more from what NOT to do, than what TO do. It always has amazed me that few here talk about their failures and setbacks (there have to be many from everyone here). Others could learn so much from them. Learning what not to do (and why) is just as important, if not more, than learning what to do. Again, this is where experience comes in, And of course failure is part of experience (and success).
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