Thank you Matt for asking me to share. A nice change of pace from organizing the Story of the Week.
With more than two years of this page, it’s hard to think of something that has not been posted about before. From my short career, I’m sure I have a list of technical or storytelling tips I could add, but instead I’ll take a more personal approach.
In my experience I have found there are, at the base, “4 P’s” to success. I see all four of these, every day, in this group.
Practice: Practice your skills. Every day work to improve. Open yourself to critiques. Find new tips, suggestions, skills, and feedback. Take those and apply them to your day.
Patience: Several layers for this. As you practice your skills, you have to be patient with your growth. “Rome wasn’t built and a day.” At the same time, we need to be patient in our daily turn – we need to be patient with our coworkers (even when you work with that person). Patient with our gear (yes, even with the tripod with the slipping leg). And patient in our work (as much as I want to rush and shoot the next shot, I need to be patient and wait 10 seconds to finish recording my shot or it’s a bust. Among other examples.)
People: Sure in the Storytelling world we have people or characters, they add to the success of our stories, but I’m not talking about them. I mean the people we surround ourselves with: our friends, family, teachers, and mentors. I’m very fortunate I have a great group of mentors; most of them have become good friends. I’ve been able to go to them for advice on so much more than news gathering or reporting. I’d personally find those, successful in this business, and directly ask them for critiques and feedback. That goes steps beyond blindly listing a story for a critique. I appreciate, greatly, those who’ve taken their time to help me over the years.
Passion: My favorite subject. Passion is the most important thing in our world. One of my favorite quotes is “Nothing in the world is accomplished without Passion.” Passion pushes us to be better, go farther. If someone is going to talk to us on camera, more than likely they’re passionate about what they’re going to talk about. Find it, capture it, share it! It’s also important we keep our own passion for storytelling, or whatever, alive and well. An unfortunate trend I’ve seen is without our passion we become unhappy, and our quality of life and work suffer. The most passionate are also the most successful, universally in any business, hobby, etc… It is our own responsibility to find our passion and motivation, you need to find what motivates you and use it to help you grow. It’s also a simple, if you have fun doing it, it’s not really work.
I’ve found and used the “4 P’s” to be the cornerstones in my career. I hope you find them as useful as I. And if you’re looking to expand your “4 P’s” you can attend the Ignite Your Passion Workshop in St. Paul MN, Sept 13-15th. http://www.facebook.com/groups/igniteyourpassionworkshop/ (you know I was going say something about our workshop.)
Good luck and have fun!