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SHOULD I USE AN AGENT

QUESTION FOR DAN O’DAY:

Long time listener, first time caller. Here's my question: I do afternoons in a Top 25 market. I agreed to work a probationary period of 90 days for a token part-time hourly wage in order to prove that all the horrible things my previous employer said about my being difficult to work with were false.

Now is the time to negotiate a real agreement and I'm a bit nervous. I got VERY badly screwed at my last gig because I didn't know enough about contracts. I bought your CAREER CONTROL seminar and learned a lot but I'm still not confident in my abilities. I'm wondering if bringing in an agent from Buchwald & Associates in New York is gonna be perceived as my being difficult (again!) or as overkill on a gig that doesn't really warrant such a big gun or just plain scary to a new PD overwhelmed by too much to do.

What do you think?

DAN REPLIES:

Well, I think it's safe to say that both your PD and your station would rather you NOT have someone negotiate for you, and I'm sure they'll tell you so.

While I'm aware of Buchwald & Associates, I'm not aware of the types of services they offer jocks in your position. I strongly recommend against using any agent that charges an upfront fee; I don't know if Buchwald would in your case. If they will handle the negotiations for a percentage of your radio earnings, it's probably worth it.

Even if you don't go with an agent, at the very least when you are given a contract to sign you can say, "Thanks. I'll take this home and review it with my attorney, just to make sure I understand it all."

To which the PD will say, "Why do you need an attorney?"

To which you reply, "XXX Broadcasting had an attorney WRITE this contract, so I'm sure they won't object if my attorney just READS it."

Even if you don't give it to an attorney, you'll have some time to think about the offer, consult with trusted friends, etc.

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