You’ve heard it all before… when you move to LA, you should do this, don’t do that, and always the other thing. Well, here’s two of the stranger bits of advice I’ve gotten over the years that have been helpful.
“PICK 3”: ADVICE FROM AN OLD-SCHOOL PRODUCER
Pick three restaurants: One great breakfast place, one dive, and one upscale place. Patronize them exclusively on the rare occasions when you go out to eat (the early years are the cheapest, but be nice to yourself once in a while). At the nice place, try to find a regular table and ask for it. Years later, when you have meetings or want to impress, you can suggest your regular haunts and be well treated when you go. Doesn’t hurt on date night, either.
Whenever I get to pick the location, I like to take meetings at the Smoke House in Burbank (at table 26 — it’s out of the way and next to a fireplace).
“THE 4 FAVORS / 365 DAYS RULE” : ADVICE FROM A STUDIO PR GUY
You often hear about the importance of networking, but here’s an interesting take on it: Offer four favors for others for every favor you ask for yourself. This doesn’t mean doing four favors for the person you’ll eventually ask a favor from, it just means put yourself out there as a helpful person four times for every time you ask someone else for something.
The 365 Day Rule is another good one. Don’t ask anyone for anything for the first full year you know them unless they offer. You know how you feel when someone you barely know asks for a lift to the airport? Yeah, it feels that way when you ask someone you just met to help you get something read.