Thursday, May 25, 2006

7 steps to becoming a clubbing professional

So you have decided to become more professional. You are doing it to build your reputation and reach your aims in the clubbing world.

What practical steps can you take to get there?

These tips are universal. So a budding DJ can use them just as effectively as someone in dance music PR or promoting a club night. They also apply just as much to the part time flyerer as they do to the MD of a major clubbing brand.

Tips to becoming a clubbing professional

  1. Make a plan – They say that failing to plan is planning to fail. You need to know exactly where you want to be and how you want to get there, and for that you need a plan. Planning is a massive subject (and one I have touched on in the past). If you want to get into the nuts and bolts, drop me a line. But for now, just make a plan. Fill it with realistic and achievable goals, then start doing it.
  2. Start a blog – Blogs are great for personal development. They allow you to write down your ideas and get your experience across to others. Professionals with good, well written blogs are seen as experts in their field.
  3. NetworkSchmooze and make friends with everyone you can. Again this is a massive topic, and a very difficult skill to master (I’m rubbish at it). The two key principles are that everyone prefers working with people they know and like and you have to be genuine. Noone likes false smiles.
  4. Get coached – Top sports performers need coached to get the best out of them. Why should you be any different? While a good coach can be hard to find they are worth seeking out by hook or crook. They can focus your mind, develop your weaknesses and help you see the whole picture. Stay tuned for a longer post on coaching.
  5. Coach others – Coaching others is a great way to development. It helps you put your skills into words and shows you to be an expert. Offer your skills out to help others. It might even become a nicely paid sideline if you get results.
  6. Be organised – It sounds obvious, but actually getting stuff done can be very difficult, especially if you are very busy. Get a system and stick with it. If you are a bit geeky like me (I’m looking a DJs particularly here) you will love setting up Getting Thing Done by David Allen. Even if you’re not, a good system is vital.
  7. Play the percentages – I was never great with numbers, but sometimes they simplify things. Take this example about sliding coins to get a difficult task done. It’s all about using numbers to maximise whatever you are doing.

More on professionalism is coming up, so make sure you subscribe for regular updates.

Some of this guide has been adapted from work by Catherine Franz.