Industry Spotlight: Agency Assistant
This months's "Industry Spotlight," features Andrew Roxby, an assistant to an agent at one of Hollywood's top talent agencies. An agency assistant job is one of the best places to start your career in Hollywood -- so if you're curious what one actually does, read on!
HOLLYWOOD RESUMES: What is your job and how would describe it one sentence?
ANDREW: I’m an assistant to a television lit agent at a major Hollywood agency.
HR: What is your day-to-day like?
ANDREW: In general, it consists of answering calls, sending emails, setting meetings for clients, and setting phone calls for my boss. I also do quite a bit of sending out materials to educate various buyers on our clients.
HR: What do you like most about your job?
ANDREW: Getting to read our clients' work and getting to learn about the television industry as a whole -- who its various players are, how the process works, and how the deals are structured.
HR: How did you get your current job?
ANDREW: I interviewed for my current desk after working on a difficult desk in the motion picture lit department. My first job at the agency was in the mailroom, a job I got by meeting as many people as I could through anyone I happened to know who might have a connection to someone who worked at an agency.
HR: What was your first job in Hollywood?
ANDREW: Production Assistant on The Talking Dead.
HR: What are the skills someone would need to succeed in your position?
ANDREW: Ability to "read the room" is key and perhaps paramount. Work ethic, resilience, and the infamous "thick skin" -- meaning the will and ambition to work through anything, even when it means dealing with difficult personalities. Adaptability and the drive to learn and adjust on a daily basis are also key.
HR: What’s something you do in your job that an outsider wouldn’t expect (and maybe you didn’t expect before you took the job!)?
ANDREW: Quite a bit of drinking alcohol after work in professional meetings with other up-and-coming assistants around town.
HR: What’s a mistake you made early on in your career?
ANDREW: Taking a desk I didn’t want because I was under time pressure. Always insist on time to consider decisions.
HR: Where do you see yourself in X years, and what are you learning in your current position to get you there?
ANDREW: Running a company. I’m learning exactly how and what deals get made in this industry!
HR: If you could give one piece of advice to someone trying to break in/move up in the industry, what would it be?
ANDREW: Keep going, be polite, genuine, and hardworking. Authenticity open doors.
HR: Thanks, Andrew!
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