Hello, bosses! Look at your clothes, now back to the website, now back at your clothes, now back to the website. Sadly, you’re probably wearing your pajamas, but if you stopped wearing pajamas and actually wore street clothes, you could be more productive. Look down, back up, where are you? You’re on a boat with Morgan Freeman. What’s in your hand, back at me. I have it, it’s a shiny new microphone with a pop filter. Look again, the microphone is now a big fat check. Anything is possible when you wear street clothes and not PJs. I’m on a horse.
Now that we’ve had our fun, listen to Anne and Gabby as they give you great tips on how to stay productive day by day and why always wearing your pajamas probably isn’t the best idea.
Quick Concepts from Today’s Episode:
Wearing your PJs all day everyday could be bad for your business
Embrace the digital calendars, but don’t throw away your paper calendars!
Have a routine
Don’t schedule your work life around your sessions
Try working out in the mornings
Set a bed time for yourself
Be real with your agents and clients
Referenced in this Episode
Direct links to things we brought up ++
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VO: Today’s voiceover talent is more than just a pretty voice. Today’s voiceover talent has to be a boss, a VO BOSS. Set yourself up with business owner strategies and success with your host Anne Ganguzza, along with some of the strongest voices in our industry.
Rock your business like a boss, a VO BOSS.
Anne: Hey, guys. Before we get going today, I want to talk to you about some amazing, new, bossalicious products we have that are really gonna help you up your game and up your bossness for your business.
Gabby: And, and you don’t have to be a girl or a woman to be bossalicious, by the way.
Guys can be just as bossalicious as the ladies, right, Anne?
Anne: Everybody can be bossalicious.
Gabby: Heck yeah.
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Gabby: It’s amazing, and Anne and I have both done it. We have tested it on ourselves of course.
Anne: Of course.
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Anne: So it’s not like you have to worry the in thought about as spam because these people have already opted into this list. This is a great way for you guys to get more clients.
Gabby: Just go to voboss.com, go to the shop tab, and click on Boss Blast so you can get your boss on.
Anne: OK, now, let’s get on with today’s episode. Welcome, everybody, to the VO BOSS podcast. I’m your host, Anne Ganguzza, along with my lovely cohost, Gabby Nistico. Gabby, how are ya?
Gabby: Hi, I’m good, how are you, Anne?
Anne: I’m good. Hey, there’s a holiday coming up. [laughter]
Gabby: I know, which begs a really important question.
Anne: It’s so relevant to our industry.
Gabby: OK, it is. Anne, Anne…
Anne: What is it?
Gabby: What are you wearing? What are you wearing?
Anne: Gee, Gabby, if you must know, if you must know…
Gabby: I must know…
Anne: I’m wearing my PJ’s in honor of celebrating that holiday which is April 16, national wear your PJ’s to work day.
Gabby: I mean, it’s kind of funny because you think about voice actors, and you go, “OK, technically every day is wear your PJ’s to work day in our industry,” but we want to talk about today why this might not be the best idea, guys.
Gabby: Why just it might not be the most conducive to an excellent work environment.
Gabby: It’s tempting, don’t get me wrong. I have been there. I have done that.
Anne: I have too.
Anne: I am right now. Well you know, Gabby, the idea and the concept is all wonderful, and –
Gabby: It is.
Anne: And people laugh and joke about it, but I’ll tell you what. I think, if I’m wearing my PJ’s in the booth, I don’t know about you, but I’m kind of still asleep.
Gabby: You know, I find that there’s, gosh, a, a precedent that gets set if you don’t make the effort to get up, get dressed, have a workday, look presentable. I mean, it’s not like you have to be business casual or anything, for God’s sake, even though some voice actors do that. But to at least feel like you know, if somebody were to ring the doorbell, umm…
Anne: You can answer it.
Gabby: Right. I don’t feel the need to hide. I can — yeah.
Gabby: I will admit to the fact that pretty much, unless I know for certain I’m leaving the house that day, I never have shoes on. Like I’m always in slippers or socks or –
Gabby: The shoeless wonder. I mean like that I think goes with that territory of what we do in being casual and being comfortable, but I know for me, if I don’t make that effort, and I spend the whole day in my PJ’s, I am less productive.
Gabby: I’m lazy to be perfectly honest. I become very lazy on those days. And that is not good for bossness.
Anne: Well, yeah. And it’s not good for, not good for performance in the booth, and it’s not good, I don’t think, for getting things done. I just, I love the convenience of it, goodness, you know, I get an email and I’m up early, and I get an email from the East Coast maybe for me that says, I need this, or I have to respond to it right away.
The fact that I can just kind of run downstairs and take care of that email response is great, but I always make it a point – and trust me, it is hard sometimes – to go back upstairs, because I got to get ready for work. Because I’m just not –
Anne: — At my best if I am rolling out of bed and rolling down the stairs to my — what a visual. Rolling out of bed, rolling down the stairs into my studio. It just –
Gabby: You know, I agree with you, and it is so funny because you think about — [laughter] — All of our aspirations and our goals as voice actors, and you go, “I’m sorry. Nobody took over the world in their pajamas. It — no. It’s not gonna work.” Now, I will say I start my day almost every day in my robe. I do. I really do. I get up, I make myself a cup of coffee, I go right to my computer, and I spend probably about half an hour to 45 minutes every morning having coffee leisurely and checking email and just going through kind of the plan for the day.
Anne: That’s interesting. See, if I do that, I don’t get out of my pajamas.
Gabby: Oh, see that’s fascinating to me because that’s my process. Like I need that, and then I go, “OK.” And then I take like an early morning like a little break time, and then I go, “OK, now I have to get ready now. I have to get serious.”
Anne: I have to get serious about it. I love it.
Gabby: I do. Then I go like I get dressed and I get, you know, presentable. And that is really the second start to my day, if that’s kind of — I don’t know. It seems kind of funny.
It is like I have a take two. [laughter] That’s when I actually start.
Anne: Have your breakfast, let’s put it that way. Having your breakfast when you are at your computer, drinking your cup. I did, I did notice you said coffee.
Anne: I’m sure there is people going to be listening going, [gasp] they drink coffee.
I love my coffee. I want everyone to know that I love my coffee, I honor my coffee, but I drink lots and lots and lots of water after my coffee. And if I have to record in the morning, I’m not always drinking my coffee right away.
Gabby: I’m unapologetic. I’m sorry, my blood type is caffeinated.
Anne: Yeah, there you go. I like that. [laughter]
Gabby: I drink coffee all day, every day. Umm I, yeah.
Anne: Oh, me too.
Gabby: I don’t function without it. I do offset with a lot of water.
Gabby: But I love my coffee, I’m sorry. And I drink it black because everybody’s like, you know, the dairy and the sugar and — no, black, straight up.
Anne: I won’t be apologetic either. I take cream in my coffee.
Anne: I do, I do. And I tried it, I’ve tried it black, and I have been successful for certain amount of time, but I just can’t, just can’t like go all the way with that. So I have to have cream in my coffee. So again, following it up with tons and tons of water.
Gabby: Yeah, yeah.
Anne: But let’s talk about what it means to have a productive start your day and maybe some tips, other than just getting out of your pajamas, to have a productive day, uhh at the onset, and to be boss.
Gabby: I believe that people are creatures of habit, and I think that habit and schedule are really, really great. You know, some folks don’t like it. They like to rage against the machine. I… don’t really see that being necessary. Maybe I did that in my 20’s, but now I kind of go, “gosh,” you know, it’s really nice to have a certain predictability and a set way of going about things and to have a process. And I don’t see there being anything wrong with a process. Umm I think it’s –
Anne: I really need the process.
Gabby: I think it’s essential, yes.
Anne: I need my calendar, I need my schedule, I need to look at that first thing in the morning. Actually I also look at my schedule the last thing at night, before I wrap up for the evening. I’m look at my — looking at my schedule for the next morning, thinking and um actually checking off what is it that I have to do, so that I can kind of prepared, be prepared in the morning.
Anne: When I sit down and say, OK, “here’s what I’ve got to do.” And I use my calendar religiously. It is — I don’t think I could live without my calendar.
Gabby: I can’t.
Anne: That to me is productivity.
Gabby: And I, I have two of them, right. So get this.
Anne: I have multiple.
Gabby: For like a million years, right, I’ve been a paper girl. I always just been very vocal about my fondness for the paper, the physical calendar.
Anne: Yeah, you are talking to a scrapbooker, so I get that.
Gabby: Totally like my paper, but, but recently, really as of this year, I’ve had to embrace a digital calendar. I’ve had no choice for scheduling and for ease of working with multiple people, and everything from my sessions to my students had to embrace the digital. So I actually found a way to balance the two and to have both my digital calendar that’s sort of like my public calendar that other people can see and then my private paper calendar. I’m very proud of my private calendar.
Anne: My private calendar.
Gabby: Well, it’s just for me.
Anne: I have only digital calendars, but I do have, I do have a paper to-do. So if I need to scratch something down, or you know, while I’m either on the phone or I met my — you know, I do like to write. You know what’s so funny, Gabby, I was signing a check the other day, and I actually was, was thinking, “wow. I can’t keep a pen in my hand for too long these days. It’s so odd.” I don’t know if you’ve got to that, but for us to write so much anymore, it’s just getting to be –
Gabby: I know, your hand cramps. You are like –
Anne: Your hand cramps. This isn’t fun. This is how we know.
Gabby: I know, totally. Plus a little arthritis setting in, it’s no good.
Anne: This is how we know we are more mature today. [laughter]
Gabby: mm-hmm. Aged like a fine wine.
Anne: “Like a fine wine.” There you go. What other things do you do, Gabby, to start your day off right and to be productive?
Gabby: Well, back to this whole PJ thing, right, this is something I really love that I read not long ago about uh highly successful people. And really, really really fascinating article, I think it was the Wall Street Journal, talking about how captains of industry, highly successful people, entrepreneurs at the highest level, do one incredibly fascinating thing when it comes to wardrobe. They wear the same thing every single day. Like a uniform.
Anne: Oh, that’s interesting.
Gabby: Steve Jobs, right.
When we think of these guys, uh Tony Robbins, they always wear incredibly predictable things: same shirt, same pants. And in one sense, OK, it seems very devoid of creativity, right, and it seems very boring and bland, and to just have a closet full of the same thing.
But when you think about the concept of a uniform and what a uniform enables you to do both from let’s say like a military standpoint and also –
Gabby: Also from an educational standpoint, it’s a fascinating shift. Every single one of them attributes their decision to do this to the fact that it allows them to use their brain power and their decision-making abilities for more important things.
Anne: Important things.
Gabby: Early in the day.
Anne: That makes a lot of sense.
Gabby: Every day. Yeah, early in the day is when you’re at your best for decision-making.
Anne: Oh, I agree.
Gabby: So you don’t want to sap that up with needless decisions. So that’s a great method that they’ve adopted. The other thing is that uniform signifies — it creates sort of a trigger in your mind of what I’m now here to do. I have a job. I have a job to do, and this uniform represents that. And it makes you more productive. It’s incredible.
Anne: Wow. I want to know how many people are going to now make that uniform their PJ’s. [laughter]
Gabby: Well, but here’s the thing. If that works for you, it works for you, right? I’m not here to judge but I think there’s something to be said for the consistency.
Anne: I agree with that.
Gabby: You know, I learned over the years, like I’m limited — like I have a lot of black in my wardrobe. I have a lot of gray. I keep things very simple, and I can coordinate very quickly and not have to worry about it and just –
Anne: So yeah, that’s a, that’s a very interesting article that you read. I actually, I, I think there’s a lot to that in terms of getting yourself on a, on a schedule. And I think a lot of times for people in voiceover, especially if they are not doing it full-time yet. They are doing it part-time, the times of day that they are able to get to it vary from day to day, or people with busy lives outside of voiceover, it becomes harder to really focus and pinpoint and create that schedule. And I, I’m always telling people, like if you’re dedicated — it’s almost like a dedicated full-time voiceover artist, I know this is what I’m doing. And a lot of times to me, it was an easier transition going full-time voiceover than it was when I was working part-time because I had to juggle so much more and had so much more schedule with a full-time — and I knew exactly, this is what I’m doing. This is my job. And oh my gosh, I went from that, you know, getting a paycheck every two weeks to like unpredictability.
Anne: And that is what forced me to create that schedule again.
Gabby: Well, sure. You can’t be consistent when you have things like that going on. So some voice actors are guilty of this, right. If they don’t have a session early in the day, then they kind of revolve everything around when their first session is. So let’s say your first session isn’t until 11:00. Ahh people like to sleep in, and they get kind of lazy, and again they sort of get out of routine. So different things that I’ve learned over the years, so OK, for people with kids, it’s a little bit easier because it kind of forces you to have a schedule and have a routine.
Anne: Or kitties.
Gabby: Yeah, yeah. Animals as well.
Anne: They force you to have a routine.
Gabby: But one of my single friends in voiceover, what he does is the morning is his gym routine, every single morning. Early. He’s an early morning guy. He’s that the gym by 6:00 or 7:00 in the morning every day.
Anne: Yeah, yeah.
Gabby: It forces him to again have that consistency, have that routine, and get his butt in gear, and then start his workday.
Anne: I’ll tell you, I think working out is an amazing thing. Like there are some people, that’s what they do. They get up and work out.
Anne: There is no better way that I think to jumpstart your day in your brain, umm in your energy level than to do a workout early in the morning. That, I, I’ve done that. I don’t do that as consistently as I want every day, but I have — I was on the schedule where I was taking a class — a schedule where I was taking a class at 6:00 a.m. at the gym.
And I’ll tell you what, once you wake up, you feel great afterwards.
Gabby: And I think the converse of that too is, let’s not ignore the nighttime routine, right?
Gabby: Consistent bedtimes.
Gabby: We are the worst. We are the absolute worst as an industry for this because we work wacky hours, and we work long into the night sometimes. There’s got to be a point, guys. There’s got to be a limit. There’s got to be a place where you go, no. I mean, we almost have to treat ourselves like children. Kids need a bedtime routine. They need to start wind down. We do too. We’re not any different.
Anne: You know, once you’ve been doing this for a while too, I think your body attunes itself to certain times. And I know myself, I have better times of the day when I’m a better performer. And that, that’s really what’s critical. And so I’m always trying to work with my clients, you know. I think we all know that like early in the morning, our voices are lower, right, for the most part. People’s voices are lower.
Gabby: [in a low voice] What do you mean?
Anne: Yeah, right.
Anne: There’s a certain time. There is a certain time that people start work, at least for me because I — I definitely have a lower voice in the morning. But I think even late at night, if I’m tired, I’m not going to perform.
Anne: And I want my clients to get the best performance. And so part of that too is also being a responsible and, you know, good performer and talent and knowing yourself and knowing when your body’s tired and needs to, you know, get sleep. So that you can be the best that you can be for your client.
Gabby: Just last night, I had a call come in at 9:00 p.m. from one of my reps on the West Coast, and they wanted me to record at 9:00 p.m.! And I was like, “no. This is not — Gabby is not fresh. Nooo.”
Anne: Gabby is not fresh. Gabby is not fresh.
Gabby: This is a bad time.
Gabby: To — like, I’m unfocused. I’m thinking about bed right now. I’m like winding down for the day. This isn’t when you want me. But fortunately, because they were able to hold it off until the morning, well, my morning starts much earlier than the West Coast, so I was able to accommodate that way. But I had to be honest. I had to tell them, “no, this is not the right time.”
Anne: Yeah, and that I think is really great that you were able to do that. And I think that was really forthright of you. Voice responsibly, Gabby. Voice responsibly.
Anne: That’s what I need to say. [laughter] I think that was great. I think your client in the end is going to be thanking you multiple times over.
Gabby: There is another really important part to that. Bossing is adulting.
Gabby: It’s the same thing, and that’s the way we have to look at it. People think adulting, and they think uhhh the trudgery of being an adult and having responsibility. You know what? Flip that script, guys. You are bossing.
Anne: You need to be in prime shape. I will tell you what, if that’s not the case, you need to — I think you need to be real. I think you need to be –
Anne: Real with your agents, real with your clients. And it’s amazing how understanding clients can be. I mean, they are human, for the most part. [laughter]
Gabby: It’s not just being responsible with your voice, it’s you. It’s your whole self, and part of being responsible — yeah, you know what, it is fun to have the occasional day and wear your PJ’s to work as a voice actor, but don’t make it every day. Get up, boss it up.
Anne: Get up, boss it up. Get up, get dressed, boss it up.
Anne: Big thanks to our sponsor ipDTL for our quality connection and recording, and you too can find out more at ipDTL.com.
Gabby: Get all the boss in your life that you could ever want on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube. Make sure to subscribe to us on iTunes and Sticher and of course, go to voboss.com for all things boss.
Gabby: You’re bossalicious, Anne.
Anne: You’re bossalicious. Be bossalicious.
Gabby: No, you are.
Anne: Have a great week, guys. Kick butt, and we’ll see you next week.
VO: Join us next week for another edition of VO BOSS with your hosts Anne Ganguzza and Gabby Nistico. All rights reserved Anne Ganguzza Voice Talent in association with Three Moon Media. Redistribution with permission. Coast-to-coast connectivity via ipDTL.