With so many great and varied companies in Hollywood, it can be hard to pinpoint viable leads for new opportunities. Some people blindly submit their resumes for every job posting they see, and they probably aren’t having as much success as they would if they really targeted the companies they’re most passionate about. To make the job search manageable, it’s good to set some goals and put the majority of your energy toward reaching them.
We recommend selecting anywhere from 10-15 companies to heavily research and monitor for openings. Sometimes that list will be shorter -- even a list of one or two companies is fine if you know exactly what you’re looking for -- but tracking more than 15 will become too burdensome, especially if you’re working full time. Create a schedule for checking the job boards at each of these companies regularly, and make an effort to meet as many people as you can at each. If you're more interested in freelance work in writing or production, try to find 10-15 contacts on LinkedIn with the job title you're looking for and ask for informational interviews to learn more about those roles and build relationships with people that can notify you of future openings.
Not sure where to start with your list? Here’s a tip: Research the creative teams and distributors of your favorite movies and TV shows. You want to work at a place that makes the type of content you’re passionate about, so why not head straight to the source? Even if these companies are ultra-competitive, don’t discount them -- you’ll never get there unless you try! And, as an added bonus, you’ll also have a lot to talk about in a job interview if you’re very familiar with the projects your favorite company produces.
Another option is to choose a company with a mission or specialty that excites you. For example, if you’re really into politics, a company like Vice might be a good option. Or if you're an advocate for women in film, look for companies that produce female-driven content. The key is to find crossover between your personal interests and your work. The good news? There are companies in the entertainment industry that produce content for just about every niche imaginable, so it's relatively easy to create a very concentrated job search centered on organizations with missions that you support. When you apply for jobs at these companies, your natural enthusiasm will show hiring managers that you really mean business.
Obviously, there will be times where you see an interesting posting for a job or company that isn’t on your list or that you hadn’t heard of before, and by all means, you should apply. Don’t close yourself off to positions just because they weren’t part of the original plan. But still make sure to put in effort to get your resume into the right hands and research the company thoroughly so that your newfound passion comes across in your job application.