Film Set Rule #7 – Make your boss look good

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They already did you a favor by hiring you so…


This rules has two meanings

  1. Do YOUR job
  2. Let your boss take the credit when things go right

If you saved the production time and money with an ingenious solution – who should get the credit?  Your boss.  She is the one that hired you!  You owe her your entire paycheck!

If you make your boss look good, then they make their boss look good.  This is an ecosystem of people getting more and more work.  The best way to get your next job is to get your boss their next job.  Hooray!

On a big job, if your boss looks bad the entire department might get fired.  If you boss gets replaced, he will want to bring in his own guys.  If you replace your boss, you will be stained by what went wrong previously.

Breaking this rule and trying to take credit is a dangerous game.  First, your boss will see you taking credit… and not hire you next time.  Second, the producers will see you taking credit.  They will think you have a big ego (which you probably do) and they won’t hire you next time.

The producers know who the real heroes are on set.  And they know who the real duds are.  Heroes get more work.  Duds get fired.  A career takes time to develop.  Just keep showing up – and make your boss look good.

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