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The Factory Floor

Rachel writes:

First off I love your blog!  It’s comforting to hear that another PA is dealing with the same stuff I deal with. 🙂

I have been working as a PA for the past year on different reality shows.  My resume is obviously OK (or at least decent) otherwise I wouldn’t be getting any work, but I never really know if the way I have my resume is the best way for production.

Right now I basically have three columns.  One with my position, the next with the name of the show, and the last one with the production company/producer/month and year I worked on it.  Is this the best way?  Should I be describing what I did I set?  Is there a different format I should use?  Should it look more like how imdb puts your credits?

Have you seen the new IMDb layout? I won’t even link to it, it’s so ugly. Now it looks like something designed in the mid-nineties. It might as well have animated gifs and midi music.

As I’ve said in the past, the three-column look is what I have, and what I most commonly see everyone from PAs to DPs use.

There is no reason to describe your duties. A PA is a PA, with minor variations. The same is true for just about any crew position.

I was talking with a civilian friend of mine the other day, who is applying for a new job. She’s currently a “project manager” at a major car company, but she wants to work at another company as… a project manager.

It sounded like a lateral move to me, but she explained that it was a completely different job. This confused the hell out of me, because I’ve been working in film and TV my entire adult life. The editor does the same job whether it’s a short film or an epic feature.

My friend explained that I was thinking about it wrong. She’s not part of the crew; she is equivalent to a studio executive.

At a car manufacturing plant, apparently, everyone is in a union, and every position has a very standard set of tasks.  In other words, the stage is actually the factory floor.  Of course, it’s not often that the factory foreman makes several times more than the CEO.

Why is he wearing Steve Jobs' pelt?
What?  Like I’m gonna put up a picture of Lucas.

We often get caught up in the “art” of what we do.  Sometimes it’s good to remind ourselves that, despite all the glamour and excitement, we’re really manufacturing a product.

Wow, this post drifted really far afield of Rachel’s question.  Ummm, let’s see… Oh!  Be sure to include your phone number and email at the top of the resume, too.  People forget that a lot.

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2 Responses

  1. First the world is now pretty much fully online. And employers don’t have time to look over hundreds of resumes. So key is be different. First make sure you have a nice clean online resume. Buy your name domain 8 bucks a year, and a server for like 15 bucks a month. Now you have a clean online presence. Now build your tangible resume to match your online profile. So when they look at it, it makes them go online and look at it on a webpage, an there you can show videos. WAIT! Get’s better when your currently working grab a flip camera or use your cell phone and record yourself on the job, and post updates on what your doing. This will entice people, and maybe you get a better gig over it. How I approached my investors, and employers my story coming soon here learnfilmonline.com.

    Great POST!!!

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