Are You Psychologically Suited For Success In The Music Industry?

Greg-savageA recurring theme of business writers is the topic of personal psychology and success. Often this comes in the form of looking at an aggregate sample of successful entrepreneurs, figuring out top psychological traits and saying you need to be this or that personality type to succeed. Yet research into entrepreneurship has repeatedly shown that successful business people have all sorts of personality types. A recent post at Diy Music Biz looks instead at what musicians must do to succeed leaving the door open for a wide range of personality types.

Sure, there are personality types that are unlikely to succeed without family money, for example:

  • the type that always complains when someone charges a fair, sustainable price for an online service because they cannot evaluate actual value;
  • the type that always quits when things get tough whether or not that means they're making progress;
  • the type that's just too nervous or insecure to get on stage or push themselves into the limelight.

But when one flips perspective and looks at success, it's hard to find a common denominator beyond not quitting though quitting is sometimes the best thing to do. In such cases one quits "the right stuff at the right time" so that one can keep moving forward.

Greg Savage's post "5 Traits Of Successful Music Professionals" approaches the topic based more on the things one needs to be able to do which could be accomplished in a variety of ways that take into account one's individual psychological type.

Here's what Savage discusses with my take on each point:

"What Sets Those Who Are Able To Make A Living In Music Apart From Those Who Aren’t"

1. "Willingness To Please The Client"

If you want to be a business success in music, i.e. get other people's money, then you're going to have to please the people whose money you're trying to get.

For some musicians this means studying pop hits and attempting to move in that direction. For others it means finding the audience who cares about what you want to do and connecting with them, even if it's a tiny niche that seems unlikely to lead to a major label signing.

2. "Successful Musicians Are Self Educated"

Savage looks at this topic more from the producer's side, focusing on an example of new equipment with a steep learning curve, but this goes for everybody.

To succeed in the music biz you not only have to keep improving your basic musical and performance skills but you also have to learn how to do your part in the studio, promote yourself online, deal with new business opportunities and so much more.

To some degree this may be the biggest challenge beyond simply becoming a solid musician.

3. "They Position Themselves In Front Of Opportunities"

Successful musicians put themselves in places where they can succeed or can build a base for future success.

Sometimes this means moving to the big city. Other times it means moving to someplace a bit less noisy so that you can be heard. This holds true on the web as well.

4. "Successful Musicians Are Persistent"

Savage discusses the concept of "no meaning not right now" and finding ways to turn people's resistance around.

This point also covers continuing to search for opportunities after the obvious ones have shut you out. If you can't find a fresh way to approach those who say no, doing the same thing over and over again and hoping for different results is a likely path to failure.

5. "Successful Musicians Take Action"

It's important not to jump into things without taking a solid look at what you're jumping into but, at the end of the day, if you're not predisposed to take action you can always find ways to stall long enough to avoid success.

Don't Let Your Personality Type Hold You Back

It's not your personality type that's going to hold you back, except in extreme examples, it's how you choose to face challenges that matters.


Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (@fluxresearch) posts music crowdfunding news @CrowdfundingM. To suggest topics about music tech, DIY music biz or music marketing for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.

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