Knowledge is power. This saying is true. I will go further for us and say that knowledge of the industry is empowerment for you. If one plans a career in the entertainment industry, one must learn about the industry; how it works and how to work best in it. There are way too many aspects of the industry that we do not have any control over. We must accept this fact and understand what we, ourselves, do have control over; our approach and attitude, in which we must try to stay present and positive, and our preparation, whether that means our training, our readiness for auditions and interviews, and the research we do in order to better understand the industry and the people inside of it running the show.
Seek out and talk to trusted experienced people, teachers, colleagues, and take the time to read the trade publications. Do your research! That time you take pays off so that you do not get taken for granted for one's inexperience.
For example, never pay for an audition. Legitimate auditions available to you are free, and you should never be charged. If someone asks you to pay them for getting you an audition, please check their credentials. Finding appropriate auditions for you is your job until you reach a certain level in the industry and you find representation. Even then, you still never pay for an audition. If you book a job, your agent will get their 10% when you get paid. More on agents later.
Another example is never feel pressured to sign anything you or someone you trust has not fully read and understood. Legitimate industry folks are transparent and open to your questions and the time you need to take. Anyone who is not fully transparent, refuses to answer your questions, gets impatient, or tells you that you must sign or lose out is not someone you want to work with in this industry. Think of this as a marathon and not a sprint or one-off job. Make sense?
If you do not understand something, ask. That also most likely means that you have more work to do before you take another step in this industry. There is room for all who are serious about the work and understand what they need to do in order to work. Be ready to compete in this highly competitive arena, and do it in your own time. That way you will be in charge of your career and make the best first impression.
All the best, K2