I’m not good at talking, I’m usually quiet in a group of people, and I’m sometimes awkward speaking. Yet a quiet person like me was able to get his dream job. I just want people to know that you don’t necessarily have to be able to speak well in order to be successful.
I heard Disney Imagineer Tony Baxter talk about artists at Walt Disney Imagineering. Tony Baxter worked on Big Thunder Mountain, Splash Mountain, the Indiana Jones Adventure, Disneyland Paris and many more projects. He said that most artists are introverts, and mainly express themselves through their art. But at Imagineering, they have to do presentations to pitch new projects to the managers.
Even though I was quiet, I didn’t realize that other artists were quiet until I heard Tony Baxter say it. It makes sense though, artists don’t have to talk when they do their work.
I believe that whatever your dream job is, if it requires you to have speaking skills, you will find a way to do it, especially if you are passionate about your work. I can imagine artists at Imagineering getting up the courage to do their presentations when they really believe in their projects. Also, even quiet people can talk about something that they are really interested in, or know a lot about.
I usually don’t have much to contribute to a conversation, but when the subject is Disney, I could go on and on if I were talking to an interested party. But I want to let you know that you can find your dream job even if you have a hard time talking. Speaking is not important in every job, it’s only one talent, anyone can become successful if they concentrate on their special talent.
One thing that I realize looking back at how I got my dream job as a Disney artist – Is that if you keep looking for opportunities, you will find them. But the trick is that you have to prepare yourself so you’re ready for the opportunities when they come. For me, I had to get my artwork up to a certain level of quality in order to show Disney that I could do the work. I also had to do portfolio samples with Disney characters so they could relate it to their business. If you are interested in working for a company, it helps to learn as much as you can about the company, and be able to show them how hiring you will benefit the company. My experience is that lack of opportunities is not the problem, being prepared when the opportunities come is the real secret to getting your dream job.
If you want to get to your dream job, you have to focus your mind like a laser beam onto your goal. That means you can’t let distractions get you off track. It doesn’t mean you make it your number one priority, of course other things in life can and should be more important. But it does mean that every day you put it as number one on your long term to do list. Before you get to your goal, it’s easy to lose that focus, but always try to get back to it.
We usually want to avoid conflict, and prefer to not have limitations, but how can conflict and limitation be good? I’ll give you a couple of examples.
Walt Disney would sometimes intentionally put two of his artists that he knew didn’t get along together on the same project, because he knew that out of the conflict, something really creative could result.
George Lucas, creator of Star Wars, often clashed with Gary Kurtz, producer of the original Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back. Kurtz left because of disagreements over Return of the Jedi. Most people agree that Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back are the best Star Wars movies.
In the original Star Wars trilogy, George Lucas also faced limitations with the special effects technology, the budget and studio management. The limitations forced him to come up with more creative solutions. In the prequels, Lucas had pretty much free rein in creative decisions, and unlimited possibilities with computer generated imagery, but a lot of fans like the original trilogy better.
I recognize that often my Disney work is made better because the art director would make suggestions and ask for changes. Sometimes I am cranking out the work under pressure from deadlines, or I am too close to the work to see what was wrong with it. Also sometimes, I didn’t want to bother making the changes, but when I think about it, usually it did improve my work. A lot of times, getting opinions from knowledgeable people will your make your work better, so don’t always think that criticism is a bad thing.
You might think that having your dream job is all fun and rosy, but sometimes it’s not. When I first worked for Disneyland, I was very enthusiastic and starry eyed, but some employees (Disney calls them ‘cast members’) told me that the magic wears off quickly. Of course there are people who maintain the enthusiasm. Conflict and limitation can force you to be more creative, and make whatever you do even better.
You probably have seen and even considered trying money-making seminars. You know, those seminars, videos, books, etc. that promise that you can make money in your spare time, investing in real estate and other things. If you want to consider one of those seminars, think about your strengths and talents first.
For example, if you are considering a real estate seminar, think about whether your interest is really in doing real estate. If so, you would probably get a lot out of the seminar. But if you’re considering it just because it sounds easy, then maybe it’s not the thing for you. (The seminars always make it sound easy.)
The seminars are good for people who really have an interest or natural affinity for that particular subject. If you want to succeed in whatever you do, I believe it’s best to figure out where your interest really lies.
I believe that any person has a greater chance of success doing the thing that God has put in them in terms of talent or natural ability. You can discover it by figuring out what you are naturally good at, and what you love to do.
Going after your dream job is not necessarily easy, but in order to start, you have to figure out what you are really good at. I knew that I was good at art, but since art seemed like a hard thing to make a living at, I considered those money-making seminars. But now I realize that it was better to put my effort into what I was good at, which led me to my dream job.