Author Topic: Joining the Staff  (Read 7406 times)

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MatthewShiner

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Joining the Staff
« on: Jan 28, 2005, 03:38 pm »
Okay, so things are going well at my current theatre, so well, they want to bring me aboard on staff, for a full time and permanent staff position.

Has anyone had experience with going from a contract stage manager to being a staff position?  What should I ask for?  What should I avoid?

I am a little flummuxed what the theatre gains by this, other then the warm and fuzzy feeling tht I am committed to them?  What can I gain, other then the warm and fuzzy feeling that I have a commitment from them?
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Anything posted here as in my own personal opinion, and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of my employer - whomever they be at a given moment in time.

SM_Art

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gain?
« Reply #1 on: Jan 28, 2005, 09:15 pm »
The first thing you can gain is employment between shows, and a steady paycheck!  For most, that means a regular job but also a life in theatre, which many have to choose between.  You get the best of both worlds.  

You may get expected to do a lot of other job tasks along with the title, some of which have nothing to do with being an SM... which is part of the down side, but I guess it comes with the first part.

I'd check on how your salary gets interrupted by the AEA contracts and such, because that could be a tax nightmare... and you definitely don't want to lose the AEA connection,  for work weeks, pension etc.

Do you get benefits?  If not, make sure you get enough $ to cover the extension of the AEA benefits between shows, if the break is long enough.  VSM, you're probably ready to jump in on this... what do you suggest?

MatthewShiner

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more specifics
« Reply #2 on: Jan 29, 2005, 07:18 pm »
Here is some of the specifics on my situation.

We preform year around, so I would always be working on a show (5 of the six shows) - so I would never not be on an equity contract (So pension is not an issue.)  They want to include me on their health insurance (so I would be double insured).  Extra duties will include calendaring for show specific situations, supervising staff, hiring/firing staff (ASM, PA, Interns, other SMs), supplying SMs for readings, events, etc, etc, etc.  There would be some additional staff requirements such as staff meetings, department head meetings, etc.

What I am looking for is to see if anyone has had a specific situation or know someone who has - what sort of salary bump should I ask for?  What should I negotiate into the contract?  What should I be aware of?
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Anything posted here as in my own personal opinion, and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of my employer - whomever they be at a given moment in time.

akearson

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Joining the Staff
« Reply #3 on: Jan 29, 2005, 07:58 pm »
There is not much really to be aware of except more personal investment on your part. It is harder to zip off and do that cool show that comes along if you are committed full-time to a company. The great benefit for both you and them is your ability to have a voice beyond your specific production or department. Being a part of the pre-season planning process is really beneficial. Also, being able to be an extra set of eyes and ears backstage or in the house for the tech of shows you are not SMing can be very helpful to all involved. The draw back to this sort of situation is that you may find yourself becoming "management" and putting the needs of the company before the needs of the actors. Some PSMs are very capable at separating the two, while other are not. I guess that just depends on your ability to compartmentalize.

In terms of salary bump up- a guarantee of salary during weeks that you are not on an AEA contract and additional monies per week for extra hours work is customary (I think an additional $200 a week for approximately ten hours is the going rate). Sometimes this compensation comes separate from your AEA salary, so that you do not have to pay dues on it and the company does not have to pay pension.

As for any extra perks to negotiate for, I would ask for what everyone else is getting (parking, vacation time, comp time, company supplied laptop).

VSM

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Joining the Staff
« Reply #4 on: Jan 30, 2005, 03:55 pm »
First off Matt ~

CONGRATULATIONS!

It seems (as Art said) that you will be getting the best of both worlds.
And, if I remember correctly, this was a relatively new job for you...

BRAVO.

You seem to have gotten a couple of great tips and I hope they keep coming. I wish I had something to add but I have not been in a similar situation. Yet.
Ordo ab chao

MatthewShiner

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Thanks
« Reply #5 on: Jan 31, 2005, 06:23 pm »
Thanks for all the input.  I am looking forward to laying the ground work for this new position with the company, as we start to grow into our new theatre, and start doing more and more shows.  (moving from 5 shows a year to 8-10 shows a year, with rentals coming in and so forth.)

If anyone is ever in DC, look me up . . . there is almost always a show running.
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Anything posted here as in my own personal opinion, and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of my employer - whomever they be at a given moment in time.

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