You would think that most voiceover coaches were practicing what they teach. It seems like a no-brainer, right? However, you would be surprised by the number of VO training companies staffed with coaches who are not active in the business. It doesn't mean they aren't good teachers but wouldn't you want to learn from a coach who still records projects for clients every week?
When I got started decades ago, I worked with several coaches and while they were all good and brought different perspectives to the session, I learned the most from a coach who was still active in the business and doing voiceovers daily. Not only was she excellent at teaching technique and delivery, but learning from her successes and failures helped me immensely. She was brilliant, challenging, candid and never blew any smoke. This is the type of coach I needed to learn from! From a performance perspective, she was the first coach who told me to forget everything I learned in radio and start from scratch. She was right! After several months of coaching, I became an actor and my radio announcer delivery was left in the rearview mirror.
The problem in today's era of social media is that anyone can declare themselves a voiceover guru. I've said this many times before in various other blogs; It's essential to do your research when looking for a viable coach or group of coaches.
I'm not saying someone who isn't a full-time voice actor can't conduct a good class or offer sound advice, but wouldn't you want to work with a team of coaches who are still recording various projects for various clients weekly? Or someone with casting experience?
Here at UVT Coaching, all of us are currently doing voiceovers full-time. Recording everything from commercials, narrations, IVR, theme park promos, audiobooks and radio imaging liners. Therefore, it makes the most sense to work with a team that is still active in the business instead of someone who just teaches. It doesn't mean they aren't wonderful people and can't conduct a great class but like I said above, when I first started, I learned a lot more from coaches who were still doing voiceovers regularly.
Learning from the successes, trials and tribulations of someone active in the field will help you with your craft and growth more than someone with minimal experience who decided to teach for money.