Can you trust people in the music business?

Yesterday I was giving a guest lecture at TAMK in Tampere (Finland) about networking. Thanks to Skype, I didn’t have to travel. The students now know, that the music business is a people-business, they know what kind of people they need in their network, how to design their own network, how reciprocity and introductions work.

At the end, one of the students asked an interesting question: “In my experience most of the people in the music business are quite shifty. How do you know if you can trust somebody?”

Of course I had to defend the music business. The people I deal with are very trustworthy, with only a few exceptions. Still, maybe it’s because I make a good selection?

There are 5 ways to get close to knowing if you can trust somebody, they all start with ‘check’:
– Check if you have the same expectations. If they don’t match, one of you will start to distrust the other.
– Check what you can find about the other person on social media and if it looks consistent.
– Check how transparent the other person is about the way he/she works.- Check if you have common friends, check with them what they can tell you about the other person, to make up your own mind.
– Check with people the other person has worked with before, how they experienced the cooperation.

But in the end, despite all the checking, you never know for sure. You have to take the risk, again and again.


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