Personal Branding and the Hollywood Gig Model

Casting for the Hollywood gig model

Are you ready to be cast in the workplace as you would be cast in a Hollywood movie? A huge workforce trend is the movement toward a gig economy, one that resembles how the movie industry works. Think about how a film is made:

 1.  Someone wants to make the movie and finds the money to fund it.

 2.  The key players are secured: the director, producer, and lead actors.

 3.  Everyone else is hired, each person bringing special skills to the set.

 4.  The whole crew works on the movie for as long as it takes to complete the project.

  5.  All the people hired for the movie say their goodbyes and move on to look for their next gig.

Many workplaces now function this way, and many more workplaces will do so in the future. As a result, workers need to be agile and able to clearly communicate what they can do and who they are.

Having a strong personal brand will serve you well in the gig economy. Instead of hoping that someone notices you and offers you steady, long-term employment, you must be prepared to take your personal brand on the road and leverage your skills. Chances are, you may not be an employee in the future; you may be a free agent.

The workplace has become project-oriented. More and more work is being organized into smaller segments that are facilitated by project teams. Projects are a great way to grow your brand because they have a beginning and an end, have specific deliverables, and often have measurable results.

Start thinking now about how you can take on more project work, and you’ll be taking a crucial step toward becoming more employable. Toward this end, stop thinking like an employee and start thinking of yourself as a company of one offering your clients the best service that you can provide.

Consider an example of how a project gig might work: You join a project team and work on a project for two years. That project ends, and you take what you have learned and join former coworkers at a start-up business. You work really hard to build the company, and it’s sold to a larger company. You leave and go to work for a competitor where you settle in for three or four years. That company merges with another business, and you leave to set up your own consulting firm. This type of transition goes on until you work fewer and fewer hours — not necessarily retiring, but at least modifying your work to fit your older lifestyle.

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