I’ve been a creative entrepreneur in Los Angeles for about four years now. During my time here, I have interacted with and encountered some of the most interesting people. The majority of the Angelenos whom I’ve met are ambitious, bright, and typically focused on some type of lofty goal. This contagious energy and passion, along with the awesome weather of LA, has helped me maintain my sanity throughout these past years.
However, there are some things in LA that I could definitely do without…
The traffic and the parking tickets
I hate it. Going five miles in an hour really sucks. Also, the frequent parking tickets I’ve been incurring as of late, have been one of the biggest drawbacks to this city and my bank account. With four years under my belt, I’ve learned to deal with the frequent traffic jams, prolonged commutes home, and the numerous parking tickets. It just comes with the territory when living in a city of three million people.
But, the one thing that I have not learned to cope with, and truly despise the most about LA is…
The “Los Angeles Flakers”
The “Los Angeles Flakers” are people who eagerly commit to engagements and promises to work with you on your next creative endeavor; however, when it’s time to deliver–you either never hear from them again, or they come up with some lame excuse as to why they are
Don’t get me wrong, I have also been guilty of this several times.
I think we all have good intentions when we set out to help or show support to our fellow Angeleno’s. But, at times, we get bogged down with the day-to-day stresses of everyday life, which reduces our supportive energy, and we end up at home on the couch watching Dancing with the Stars.
What I think we fail to realize, is how flaking negatively affects our potential for success.
After several years of working within the creative community of Los Angeles, I have come to realize that this city is built on reputations and relationships.
Yes, you do have to command a certain level of respect and possess a certain level of talent to be successful in LA, but you cannot succeed here with the mentality of being on an island all by yourself. You have to step outside of your “comfort zone” and “get your hands dirty,” and mix it up with the creative minds of Los Angeles, in order to form alliances and partnerships.
Unfortunately, the massive epidemic of “Flakers” has made it extremely hard to build genuine relationships in LA.
The Truth About Successful People in Los Angeles
The reason some Angeleno’s succeed isn’t mostly because of what Ivy League schools they have attended, or what networking events they have attended, or any of the other nonsense.
They say what they are going to do and show that they mean it by following through.
You ask them to show up, and they do. You ask them to partner up for your next project, and they do.
The more you follow through, the more genuine relationships you will build. It’s that’s simple, and yet so few of us really understand the importance of following through.
How not to be a “Los Angeles Flaker”
If you commit to something, do it. You’ll be amazed how much social capital you will build because of your ability to execute.
Do what you can, but know your limits. At times, a simple “no” will suffice. Honestly, this has probably been the hardest thing for me to do. I’m such a nice a guy and would love to help and support everyone; however, I do understand that my time is limited and I am only one person.
If things change, be proactive and let someone know. Life happens. If you know you’re not going to be able to make it, tell someone! Trust me, people will be a lot more understanding if you simply speak up and let them know of your inability to show up, prior to them having to reach out to you.
You’re not Johnny Appleseed, be careful how you spread out your seeds of promise. You will eventually have to tend to them, and if you ignore them, your reputation will pay the price.
Read more from Justin at http://www.immovingtola.com/