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Obstacles In The Voice Over Kitchen:
Survey Details Challenges Voice Actors Face

January 19, 2016

By 'VO Chef' Deb Munro
Voice Actor and Coach

In your mind, mix:
  • One 1/2 Creative with One 1/2 Business
Gently blend in:
  • an unstable career
  • A ton of decision makers (who don’t always know what they are doing)
  • Extreme dedication
  • Lots of skills
  • Great connections
  • Demanding expectations
  • And several investments
In this recipe there are many obstacles you will face. Rising to the challenge is always the key to success! 

My incredible assistant John Harris suggested we survey voice talent on the biggest obstacles that they face, and here are some of the results:
  • Reluctance and procrastination to do marketing
  • Taking on large projects or working full/part-time, which interferes with availability to succeed further
  • Connections
  • Letting clients know you’re out there
  • Finances
  • Time
  • Finding the right butler (thanks Peter!)
  • Cost of a demo and coaching
  • Finding the right demo coach/producer/production team
  • Finding clients to pitch
  • Other commitments
  • Getting a solid agent
  • Money and fear that you may almost make it!
  • Fear of failure
  • Transitioning from part-time to full-time
  • Not finding your way in to a closed off market
  • Landing a top agent and now having to audition against the top pros
  • Where to best spend your money

The survey gives us great insight to our obstacles. And I will add some of my own to the list:
  • Difficulty pleasing clients
  • Taking time off
  • Recording environments when on the road
  • Technological difficulties
  • Getting sick
  • Nay sayers (people doubting you)
  • Keeping up to all my ideas

As you can see, many obstacles can get in the way. But instead of looking at this list as intimidating, embrace that you may have to face each of these challenges. 

For me, the voice over career is better than working 9-5 in a routine job, full of workplace drama and other obstacles that don’t give me the satisfaction that I get as a voice actor.  

All jobs come with ups and downs. Understanding them and rising to the challenge will get you everything you want, no matter what stands in your way. 

I guess the true key to it all is,"How much do you really want it? Do you want it as much as I or the next person?”

In the end, your determination to succeed will affect how you address each of the concerns if/when they come your way. 

The best part of it is, you belong to a community of individuals who have successfuly faced many of these challenges. And we are lucky to live in a day and age where, even in a job where we are alone in a booth 90% of the  time, any understanding ear is never too far away - thanks to forums, Facebook groups, etc.

Stay real about the challenges you will face, and prove to yourself that ‘YOU GOT THIS’!

Deb Munro is a leading and award-winning voice talent and coach, and recently moved to her new home and studio in Toronto. She offers private voice over coaching by phone and Skype, and workshops on voice acting, business and demo prep in many Canadian cities.


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Comments (1)
Dave Airozo
1/19/2016 at 9:56 AM
Thanks Deb, thanks John. Great article on trials and tribulations. Now to get back on that mountain and keep climbing, after all it's a long way to the top if you want to rock'n'roll. Have a great day.
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