Do you ever stop to think about your reputation? When you were just an “ordinary” citizen (read: when you still have no band), sure, it’s pretty much okay to not give a damn what other people think. But now that you have a band, you should care about your personal reputation as well as the reputation of your band if you want a long-term career making music. Come to think about it, it’s as important as your instruments. Wait! Scrap that. It’s more important than all your instruments combined. Remember that there are many great musicians forming bands everyday. If your band has a bad reputation and you don’t do anything to improve it, you will not go too far.
Here are some ways for you and your band NOT to gain bad reputation:
Show up. There is no other way you can ruin your reputation as gravely as not showing up on your concert. Everyone bought tickets, come on. Everyone anticipated. Everyone saved up. Everyone prepared a whole set of wardrobe. And these people are not just “anyone” by the way, they’re the people who are rooting up for you. These are also the same people that can bring you down. Then there’s not showing up for meetings. What’s the deal? You forgot about the meeting? You’re too tired? Well, everybody is as tired as you so show up! I’m sure you’ve experienced waiting for someone who never showed up. Is that how you want others to feel?
Show up on time. The second tried and tested way to make people hate you and your band is when you show up alright, but you’re hours late. Again, there is no excuse in this kind of behavior. Yep, this is a behavior flaw sweetie no matter how many excuses you give. If you have a meeting at five pm, what time should you leave from your studio? That’s hard math but I’m sure you know it definitely should not be 5:30. Many CEOs and even the laidback celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain says that he judges people by how early or late they are during meetings. People will have a bad impression on you for being late and its something that cannot be erased by sense of humor, kindness or talent.
Clean up your online sh*t. Google yourself and make sure your online results only show content that matches the image you want to make for your band. By now I am sure you already created a brand/ image for your band. Don’t ruin it by having pictures/videos/reports about you that’s completely not aligned with your band’s image. Or, just about anything that could ruin your reputation. Period. If there’s a video of you cursing a waiter, then good God, find a way to to take it down. Delete old accounts from websites you don’t use anymore. Everyone Googles everyone nowadays. If you don’t clean up your online reputation, people could get turned off…including potential sponsors and partners.
Don’t do sh*t. It’s that simple. Cleaning up your shit whether online or in the real world requires 20 times more effort than behaving like a decent human being. All you have to do to achieve that has been taught to us since we were toddlers: be honest, be kind, respect, pay your dues, don’t steal, control your temper.
Call on other band members that do shit. No matter how “clean” you are if you’re with people who are very reckless, then your reputation will be tainted, too. It’s your right to ask other band members to behave in ways that won’t ruin the band’s reputation.
Own up and say sorry. And mean it. Nobody cannot not do shit for eternity as we know it. One way or the other, we stumble, we forget, we make bad decisions that could lead us to hurt others and our reputation. When that happens, really reflect and ask for forgiveness. Be sincere and do not just do it for the sake of your reputation.
These are some of the ways to manage your (and your band’s) reputation so you won’t ruin your band’s image. Anything else you want to add to this list?
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