I wanted to at least start this whilst I am still feeling inspired by it.
So several years ago I remember meeting a friend of mine in a Regus coworking space and we were swapping notes on business growth.
He ran a luxury real estate business (still might do – we’ve not spoken for a fair while so I need to get back in touch!) – and his model to showcase properties fascinated me.
He was a one-man-band (which is excellent in many many cases) but needed to show potential properties to interested prospects – and didn’t always have the time (nor inclination I guess) to get across to every property.
So I imagine he’s grown his business a fair amount since then as we’re talking maybe 3+ years ago.
So I asked him ‘who’s showing these places to people then?’
‘Actors’ he said.
‘What?’ I said back incredulously.
Immediately I didn’t get it, it seemed unexpected and made no sense to me.
What experience, relation or interest did actors have in such work. Also where in the heck was he finding these folks?
But one thing at a time 😛
‘Yeh Actors are great – they train for performance – which is effectively what showing a property is all about. They are used to talking to people they don’t know – because they’re auditioning quite a lot and also – they’re on the hunt for part-time income whilst they pursue their acting career.’
In as little as 10 seconds, Richard said something to me that has stuck with me for several years since.
It, as soon as he said it – made so much sense in my mind.
They WERE a perfect fit for something as ‘simple’ as property ‘walk arounds’.
‘So how does that work then Richard?’.
Simple – I hire them from various casting websites – put a job up for needing someone to showcase a property and then applications roll in and there’s no shortage of folks who want something like this around their main acting gig!
Fast forward to the present day……
If you’ve read any of my previous blogs you’ll know that on the sales side I’m ‘in search of warriors’.
Trying to find people who are unafraid of calling anyone, happy to pick up the phone, have a high level of ability to improvise…and can ultimately book appointments 😛
With all of this in mind – over the last 60 days I’ve been on the hunt for people that can do all of the above….
And needless to say, it’s been ridiculously challenging to find excellent people who are able to do all of these things.
Much of my improv and sales ability has actually come from my years of performance as an MC, writing lyrics, battle rapping and being on stage.
You combine those elements together when you’ve got a listening audience and judgemental onlookers in front of you and it gives you the ability to ‘perform on the spot’.
And this is WITHOUT any acting experience (especially with improvisation which if it’s a focus of your work takes it to the extreme).
Most folks in the sales industry that I’ve met – just don’t have this level of experience and this becomes a challenge when they enter the sales environment and hence things tend to break down a little bit.
And so I remembered Richard’s comments all those years ago and decided to stick out an ad (for which I’ve now had 40+ applicants) less than 24 hours ago.
I hope the number of applications will clear 100 which would be excellent and I’ve already instructed my head of HR to post the same ad on several other job boards for actors as well.
Since I decided I would write this blog (about 2 minutes before I started it) – I’ve already had two excellent voice notes that have come in from potential candidates which really does bode well for this position.
So I’m excited and I hope I’ll see some success with some of the applications that do come in over the next few days – and will update you on how it goes
If you’re looking to do something similar – let me know and I’ll try and help but briefly:
- Identify a casting website you can post ads for free (or paid) like Starnow
- Put a job role up that also contains some acting relevant work (e.g sales training can be very effective from improv actors)
- Then manage applications as they come in