Sense of Urgency

Expect to perform your tasks faster than a speeding bullet, because everyone will expect you to have a sense of urgency. There's nothing worse than a rookie who doesn't move or work quickly even after you explain the need for him to do so. I could have discussed this under Becoming Indispensable, but it deserved its own section, just because it's such an important part of what's expected of every entry-level employee.

It's been my experience that no matter how big the budget, the company, the office or the set, there never seems to be enough help or enough time. In production especially (although I've seen equally frenetic mailrooms, casting agencies, agents' offices and post facilities), it always feels as if there is more to do than there is time in the day to do it all, so we rapidly move from one task to another and keep working until we hit a wall and then drag ourselves home for the night. A PA or assistant doesn't have the luxury of leisurely strolling through his or her duties, because there is always more waiting to be done, even if it's not evident at the moment. If on the rare occasion there is truly nothing more to do after a certain task is accomplished, there will be, because that's just the nature of the biz.

This doesn't mean that work is done carelessly, cars are driven too fast or time can't be taken to ask questions or to be courteous, but whenever possible, move quickly! There's too much to do, and time is too valuable to waste.

Keep in mind that an entry-level employee who doesn't move quickly or one who spends too much time on personal calls or has too much idle time is an employee who looks as if he doesn't have enough to do and can be easily eliminated.

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