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Don't Burn Bridges

Some years ago I sent a friend request to a producer via FB. I also sent a message introducing myself. I told him I was a composer who had watched some of his short films, that I thought they were wonderful, and that I hoped to have the opportunity to work with him sometime in the future.

Later that day he started posting angry rants on FB about how some other team in a film competition had won when his film obviously was better. He challenged people to watch both films to see if they agreed with him or not, and wrote status updates about how the people on the other team obviously must have been friends with the judges.

Reading his status updates throughout the day I started to regret introducing myself. I didn’t need to worry - he never responded to my email.

If he contacts me in the future, asking me to score one of his films, I will have several things to consider before responding. Can I trust him? Has he changed – or does he still have trouble controlling his emotions? Do I want to be on his team?

There are times we will be disappointed. That is part of any business, just like it is part of life. You keep that to yourself. You deal with it and move on.

A colleague told me once about a situation where a music library he contacted declined his music. They said they did not feel his music was good. While he felt disappointed, and at first upset, he politely thanked them for their consideration. The owner of the library called him several months later and asked if they could sign him as one of their composers. One of the TV shows that the library supplied music for had specifically asked if they had any music composed by him. If he had thrown a fit when the library first declined his music they probably would not have called him later even if his music had been asked for. No one wants to work with a person who throws fits. Because he chose to not burn the bridge when he felt upset and disappointed, it led to a mutually beneficial relationship in the end.

Don’t be someone who burns bridges - be someone who builds them instead!

~ Lydia

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