Matthew Weiner, the creator of Emmy Award-winning TV show “Mad Men,” has spent years writing about workplace drama and bringing it alive onscreen.
But that doesn’t make him immune to the challenges of managing people.
“It’s hard to be the boss,” Weiner told Kyle Buchanan in a recent Vulture interview.
Being the boss means you’re responsible for the success or failure of the entire team. “Signing off on a budget, having a conversation with the studio where you promise this is what it’s gonna cost … that’s a scary job,” Weiner said.
It also means keeping people accountable. “It’s hard to fire the first person you fire — it’s hard to do that every time, actually,” he said. “That is one of the worst parts of your job.”
How did he get a handle on his leading role? “I learned to be patient,” Weiner said. For example, he would get frustrated when he handed a script that he’d worked on for three months to an employee who, after just 24 hours with it, didn’t get his vision. With time, he said he learned to calm down, assess whether he’d provided clarity, and give employees time to work through the material themselves.
Of course, even if managing has its difficulties, it certainly has its benefits. Weiner reportedly made $US25 million to $US30 million for the final three seasons of “Mad Men.”
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