Salford alumnus and US TV Executive Producer Rob Bagshaw recently joined us live from Los Angeles to share his valuable insight for getting into TV and beyond.
Rob is a prolific showrunner, having served as Executive Producer on some of the most famous reality shows in the world, from Emmy-winning RuPaul’s Drag Race to Emmy-nominated Project Runway All Stars and Keeping Up With The Kardashians.
During the live session Rob shared his top tips for getting your foot in the door of any industry:
“Always reach out. I’ve heard friends have been told this from their bosses, I’ve certainly been told this from people who have more experience that I in the business.
“Reach out, always reach out, but don’t assume that somebody else will take the initiative, people are super busy.
“We’re all wrapped up in our own worlds we need to be reminded now and again. So just because you’ve had a great connection or a moment with somebody, it doesn’t mean that they’re going to remember it down the line.
“There is nothing wrong with just knocking on that door. You know shooting them a DM, sending an email, trying to get them on the phone.”
Be Open to Different Possibilities
“Be open to something that isn’t exactly in your wheelhouse.
“If you’ve got an idea about where you want your career to go and it’s like, OK I’m super organised I’ve got step one step, two and three, you’re missing some of the opportunities where you can connect with other people. Or you’re going to find something you enjoy more or you’re going to get some experience that is going to get you to the next level.”
Spread the Love
“As you can tell I’m super passionate about what I do. There’s nothing wrong with showing your enthusiasm.
“We see so many people who are actually working on a day to day basis, even professionals that are like, oh it’s another gig I’m here for the pay cheque, whatever it is, there’s nothing wrong with being passionate about what you do and genuinely you stand out from the crowd if you are like that.
“I’ve always thought if you’re a fan of someone or a fan of something, and I don’t mean like a super fan, I mean a fan of their work or a fan of the show in terms of your career, there’s nothing wrong with showing that enthusiasm.
“I will say though it’s got to be in context with the conversation that you’re having with them, you can’t just bombard them at dinner.”
Edit, Edit, Edit
“If you are connecting with people please, please, please keep it short, they will so appreciate it.
“I don’t want to speak on behalf of everyone in television but certainly I do. I do this as well when I’m emailing or texting or whatever it might be, whenever I’m sending communications to my colleagues I edit, edit, edit.
“I write down what I want to say I look back at it, I cut out all of the waffle and I get so many posts or emails from people that are so longwinded their whole backstory, sometimes the ask is right at the end of the email.
“Put it right up front – what you’re looking for, why you’re contacting them. Re-read those emails and edit, edit, edit before you send it.”
“Be prepared, I’m going to name drop just once because this is a really, really good piece of advice. I was doing a show with Oprah Winfrey and she would always say as we were going into a meeting, or just before we were about to roll or meet someone new.
“She would say, Rob what is your intention for this meeting, what do you want to get out of this interaction, what are we here for?
“I always think that is a really good way to start a project or to start a conversation before you’re going go meet somebody.
“State what the end goal is to yourself and you can go into those meetings with this is what I want and why.”
You can watch the full session below:
If you would like to find out more about Rob Bagshaw check out our blog on his career journey here.