Build a Creative Career

Why I Hate the Terms Let’s Collab and Let’s Work

I don’t want to use the word “hate” because it is such a strong word, but let’s just say that I strongly dislike the phrase “Let’s work” and “Let’s collab” and here is why.

It is a signal that you have not done any research and you are just trying to insert yourself into any situation you can. When I reach out to people, I tend to do at least the basic research to see what they do and what their sound is like, and then I reach out to first connect and just start a conversation.

A conversation builds rapport. It allows for some time to get to know each other and what each party does, is capable of, and is looking to do.

I look at working with people the same way as hiring someone to do a job for me. For example, if I am going to take my car to a mechanic or buy a new product, I am going to seek every bit of available information I can find before I spend my money.

The same thought can be applied with music, entertainment, and working with people in the creative space. You can seek this information out by looking through their profile, listening to their music, and then having a conversation with them.

To add, if you collaborate with someone and put it out, your name is attached to it. Your library of work plays a big part in branding yourself, you just don’t want to put your name on anything.

Now, on the flipside. If you are just starting out and looking to learn, then yes, collaborating with any and everybody may be a good idea. It is kind of like dating, you have to get out there and see what you like and don’t like, but at the same time if you come across someone who is out of your league, think of a unique way to approach them so you can learn from them.

You may approach them and offer to help with something in exchange for advice. You may ask them if you can send you them a clip of your music and ask if they can give you some feedback, explaining that you know that they are busy (they are), and that you value their time. Little things like this really do go a long way.

In closing, if you are more mindful of people’s time and do some research to find a point of connection, you better your chances of mentorship, collaboration, or creating opportunities for yourself than you would if you are just blindly sending them messages saying…”Let’s work”.