#3 -- BE NICE TO EVERYBODY . . . AND LOOK LIKE A MILLION BUCKS!
"No one cares what I look like. They just want to know I can act. That's what the hair/makeup people take care of after I get the job."
Wrong. Discrimination is a human personality trait. Pretending we live in an idealistic society isn't going to get you the job. The bottom line is that this is an image business. Everyone around makes judgements based on how you look within the first five seconds of seeing you . . . long before you have a chance to show how talented you are! Do you look like what they are looking for? Your answer will likely be the same answer to the question, "Did you get the job?" Looking your best sends the message that you take care of yourself . . . that you like yourself . . . that you are proud to offer what you have to offer as a talent! Those three things are very attractive to our human nature. Boiled down, we call it confidence.
And if you feel good about yourself, you will likely meet a positive reception. When received positively, you will in turn want to be kind to those receiving you. But don't be deceived by current status! Many talent forget that the gate-keeper (e.g., the Casting Assistant, Grip, Production Intern, etc.) is frequently the first access to the prominent person's ear. Disrespect the gate-keeper and you will surely be cast aside! Everyone surrounding (and even down the block from) the person you want to impress is connected. People talk to people with whom they are connected and negative rumors are no help to the talent in pursuit of a booking!
On the flip side of not disrespecting the gate-keeper or production crew, it's important to realize that the new assistant may turn into a long term assistant. That long term assistant may one day turn into a casting director or director themselves. First impressions don't get a second chance!
Befriend everyone you meet. The larger your network, the more people who will be on your side when push comes to shove. And the more people who back you, the better your chances of booking that job, no matter their status or title!
What can you do to befriend the gate-keeper without coming across insincere?