It sounds like your music career could benefit from your creating a clear career plan. If you do this and you do it correctly, you can give your professional life a strong sense of direction and you will get a lot more done in the process.
Here are the steps to take to create a career plan:
- Take Inventory of Your Strengths an Artist and Entrepreneur: Take some time and think about what your strengths and weaknesses are for your music career. What aspects about music, creation, and entrepreneurship are you good at? What skills do you have? What are some assets you have that others don’t? Make a long list. Try to be as exhaustive as possible.
- Develop Action Plans Based on Your Strengths: Now that you have identified your strengths, convert those strengths into action plans. In other words, think about the things you would be able to do in your music career as a result of your strengths. Be creative here. Combine multiple strengths of yours together to create truly innovative action plans.
- Create Goals. Using your action plans, write out in paragraph form your one-year, five-year, and ten-year career goals. Where do you want to be in your career when you reach these points? What do you want your professional life to look like? Be specific. Set ambitious goals, but make sure they are reasonable ones given your time frame. It would be helpful for you to start with your ten-year goal and work your way down to your one-year goal.
- Create Tasks to Complete: Now that you have created career goals based on your strengths and action plans, you can now write out the specific career tasks that you need to complete in the short-term to reach those goals. Give those tasks a deadline to keep yourself focused and make sure that the completion of each of those tasks will result in your meeting your goals.
Continue to re-visit your career plan as the years progress and be ready to update and amend your one-year, five-year, and ten-year goals accordingly. By creating a plan and setting clear tasks with deadlines for you to complete, you will become more disciplined to get things done in your career.
Best of luck!
3- I like being independent, but I think I could use a manager. Are independent managers a thing? If yes, where can I find one?
Many independent musicians have managers. A successful music career can be a very complex operation, and there are plenty of examples of indies who employ a manager—or even multiple managers—to help them run things.
However, unless your music career has reached a high level of success, you most likely do not need a manager because you already have one—you! You are more than capable of managing your own career in its early stages.
Many musicians want to find a manager early in their career to help them become famous. But it is not a manager’s job to make you famous. It is your job to make you famous. It is a manager’s job to help you manage your fame once you have it.
Be suspicious of anyone who says that they will make you famous if you make them your manager. These people almost always underdeliver on their promise and can exploit you with predatory contracts.
When your career is at the point where you are ready for a manager, you won’t need to look hard to find one. They will be readily available. Just remember to have an experienced entertainment lawyer review and negotiate any management agreement before you sign anything.
Best of luck!