The Three Pillars of Successful Voice Over: Business Sense, Natural Aptitude, & Skill Training

Updated: Apr 16

Across my career in voice over, I have come to the conclusion that three fundamentals exist that are required for success in this field:

  • Business Sense

  • Natural Aptitude

  • Skill Training

Simply put, business sense is the ability to manage a business efficiently and effectively, natural aptitude is the range and versatility of your voice, and skill training is the effort and time one puts towards improving their knowledge of the various skills required in voice over.


As I see it, if you are completely illiterate in one of these areas, you will be unable to achieve a sustainable career in this industry. You may have some success, but that success will dwindle. For an example, I can reference my early career. When I started out in voice I focused solely in two areas: natural aptitude and skill training. Over time I noticed that, despite my success, largely across animation, the well was running dry (i.e. I wasn't getting continuous work). This stemmed simply from the reality that without the business element, I was treating my aspiration like a hobby failing to capitalize on my gains and maintain the momentum I had gained in my success through outreach with a larger client base to gain more experience, tracking my achievements in a marketable manner, and improving my work processes.


Similarly, if we think of an individual who has strong business sense and skill training without natural aptitude, we can easily imagine an individual that despite all their efforts struggles to be relatable to their client. Further an individual who has strong business sense and natural aptitude that neglects skill training, will rapidly fall out of line with required VO capabilities and current trends.


Although this concept may seem overwhelming if new to you, those that I have taught voice have found great value in it, it is a great mechanism to compartmentalize your development as an aspiring VO. As a VO artist I am constantly in a state of evaluating my processes in line with these three pillars, ensuring my time and work effort is put toward strengthening each.


In the future, I plan to delve into each pillar individually in more detail.


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