Kevin Bisch’s 2005 romantic comedy Hitch, starring Will Smith and Eva Mendez took a heart-warming (if not slightly cheesy) approach to the subject of men who find it difficult to talk to women. During the course of the film, these men reached out for the services of a smooth talking Hitch to overcome their fears of the opposite sex and magically, each of them ended up with the woman of their dreams…sounds too good to be true?
Well, these people do actually exist and are professionally known as ‘Pickup Artists’. Although admittedly many of these men operate on a freelance basis rather than working for agencies, the majority of them are officially certified in the art of wooing women and those at the top of their field really do make a comfortable living from their craft.
At face value, it is easy to think that men with this occupation are simply making a profit on being sleazy (and I’m sure in some cases this is true). However, the art of attracting the opposite sex is considered to be a delicate science by some which takes many years to truly master - and these professionals are helping others find the confidence to enhance their love lives.
Aside from all the training, what personal attributes would you need to be a professional Pickup Artist?
- Confidence. Obviously, in order to bestow skills on how to communicate with the opposite sex, it is crucial to have bucket loads of confidence - clear and concise speech, eye contact and positive body language are all essential when it comes to building a rapport with someone.
- Resilience to Rejection. Even the world’s most successful musicians, movie stars and entrepreneurs faced rejection at the beginning of their careers and it didn’t stop them! When starting out, a Pickup Artist must actively practice their methods in real life scenarios, but before honing their skills, they’re bound to get a few knock backs. Being able to cope with rejection, learn from your mistakes and try again is a must!
- Self Sufficiency. Due to the unorthodox nature of the job, it’s not really possible to send a neatly packaged CV and covering letter to a renowned ‘Pickup Company’ and get on the payroll. Although agencies and support groups do exist, to be a Pickup Artist, it is vital to be able to promote yourself, take charge of your own accounts and find the motivation to source and maintain relationships with clients.
Now, I’m not saying anyone reading this should actually try to become a Pickup Artist, but as you can see from the above, trying to make it in this industry does take a host of personal skills that we are all familiar with. After all, I guess when learning to become a real life Hitch, it’s like having hundreds of mini job interviews!
What are your thoughts on professional Pickup Artists - is it an acceptable occupation, or sleazy and immoral?