“This letter is to inform you that I’m leaving the company.”
In the past month, I’ve received these dreaded emails from 3 of my contacts. It always hits me like a brick. I try to develop hearty relationships with my clients over the years. It’s sad to think the relationship has come to an end.
I always respond by expressing how much I’ve enjoyed working with them, tell them how much I’ll miss being part of their projects (I truly will) and wish them the best in their new endeavors. It’s a scary email for a freelance voice actor to receive. I can’t be sure if that means the end of the line for me or if I will continue working for that company.
The client may introduce me to their successor via email. Those emails are encouraging and give me a sense of job stability, although nothing is guaranteed. Other clients ensure me that they’ve given my contact info to their creative departments. A few simply vanish and I’d never know unless I write to them and get the message that their email is defunct. Fortunately, that seldom happens.
Long gone are the days people work for a company for 30 years, get a Rolex and a retirement cake and move to Florida. Business is in a constant state of flux. Millennials on average change jobs every two years and 9 months. Gen Zers are expected to have a whopping 18 jobs over their lifetimes. We must be prepared to deal with the ebb and flow of clients throughout our voiceover careers. How do we retain these companies as clients once our contact person is gone? (I don’t have an answer to this. Please let me know in the comments if you have any ideas.)
Why the sudden uptick in career changes? Is it because it’s the end of the year? Is it due to Covid? I’ve heard a few people say the pandemic has made them rethink their careers. Others have moved to another state, citing covid 19 concerns. Even though we’ve proven some jobs can be done remotely now, I would imagine telecommuting is not an option for all. A change of residence could account for some of the job switching.
Downsizing happens, also. The pandemic hit some companies hard. Positions were eliminated. Quite possibly the person who took over my contact’s duties either didn’t get my info or they have their own talent pool and don’t need my services.
Looking at this with a glass-half-full mentality, I could say the personnel turnover means new people are taking over for people who *have not* hired me before. They will now be in the position to discover me and use my voice talents. While I’m sad to see my clients leave, I welcome new clients with different perspectives and fresh ideas for voice projects.
Fortunately, the 3 contacts that left their respective companies did connect me with their colleagues and I do continue to work for those companies. I’m hoping this turnover will result in more opportunities for voice work both with my established clients and new ones.