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Thursday, June 23, 2016

Etiquette Breaches that Can Hurt Your VO Career

Most of us voice over actors spend a great deal of time working from home. This is great and all, but it can also leave us a little out-of-touch with what it means to interact with colleagues and behave professionally. Like any other industry, there are certain rules and expectations for when you are working with others in other studios, and not observing these can do serious damage to your reputation as an actor. Here are 10 etiquette-related tips and tricks to keep in mind:

1.    Don’t touch the mic. When you walk into the studio, you had better keep your hands to yourself, or you risk incurring the wrath of the people on the other side of the glass. Seriously, don’t touch the mic.

2.    Keep your volume consistent, unless you’re actively trying to deafen the sound engineer. If your reading calls for a volume change, let him/her know ahead of time when this will happen.

3.    Always assume the mic is on and recording.

4.    Be on time. This does not need further explanation. 

5.    Don’t look like a slob. This also does not require further explanation.

6.    Remember your manners. Please, thank you, hello - these go a long way in making people like you. It shows simple, mutual respect.

7.    Don’t post photos of other cast members, script details, or anything else related to the project to social media without first asking permission. I have seen this turn out badly more than once, with the post-er having no way to undo it.

8.    Don’t wear noisy clothing. What is noisy clothing, you ask? Windbreakers that make that “swoosh” sound every time you move, a stack of bangle bracelets, jingle bell earrings at Christmastime. In the studio, clothing should be silent. I simply empty out my pockets and remove my cell phone from my hip before I go in.

9.    Remember your business cards. You definitely don’t want to be empty-handed if someone asks for your contact info, so keep a stack of cards on you. 

10. Not so much an etiquette thing here, but carry a small bag with you containing some basic items. I keep nasal spray, dry mouth spray, throat spray, Throat Coat tea bags, bottled water, pens and markers, aspirin, Burt's Bees throat lozenges and maybe a few other small items in my bag going into the studio.

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