Some wise philosopher once said "you can never predict the future, only your responses to it."
I consider that one of my axioms.
This isn't to say you can't look to signs that point to, say...
the demise of Getty. I almost forgot! Let's start again.
This isn't to say You can't look to signs of what the future will bring, but predicting it? Just be ready to respond.
Every time the phone rings, I can see my responses to every question, and follow-up question that will take place. I am not predicting the future, per se, but rather, all the potential responses to what the future holds. I am almost never surprised by an inquiry. Rather, like the branches of a tree, I've travelled from trunk to branch to limb to twig to leaf so many times, along all the possible paths, that I am prepared. Some are short stumps of a limb, like "we want your copyright...". Yoink! Branch ends. We must tread in reverse, to another branch that is more suitable, like " I will extend a license to use the work in all media for the life of the product..." instead. And we then trek further down the branch that is more sturdy, and which is well worn by repeated visits. We arrive at a mutually beneficial agreement.
Just as with a complicated travel plan, from, say, New York City to San Francisco, having a map is your answer book. So too, should you map out how you'll respond to varied questions and inquiries. At first, you'll need to consult the map. After a dozen trips from NY to SF, you'll not need the map. Then again, you'll need it part of the way from NY to LA. Then again, from NY to DC. Lather, rinse, and repeat.
Prepare your responses. When you get stumped, don't cave. Ask them if you can call them back, if you have to. Write down how you'll handle it. Perhaps, instead, you can say "I think I have a solution, let me put it in writing and e-mail it to you..." and do just that. Get out of the hotseat and cool off, consider what they want, and how you can give it to them, reasonably and in a way that you are comfortable with. Then, memorialize it in writing, and send it off.
Which results in another of my axioms - "luck is what happens, when preparation meets opportunity."
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