Eat What You Cook: Voiceover Lessons from Sam Walton


My favorite buyer program is one called Eat What You Cook. Once a quarter, every buyer has to go out to a different store and act as a manager for a couple days in the department he or she buys merchandise for. I guarantee you that after they have eaten what they have cooked enough times, these buyers don’t load up too many Moon Pies to send to Wisconsin, or beach towels for Hiawatha, Kansas. – Sam Walton p. 288,289


Is it outlandish to think that every VO should have an experience on the “other side” of the Mic?


Being a VO with a history in radio, I have written copy, produced commercials, worked with voice talent, and been a voice talent.


I think that experience on the ‘producing’ side is really beneficial to me as a performer. I can relate to the whole process a bit better, not just my “copy”. I may not have written the commercial, but I know what went in to writing it, also what went in to auditions and the hiring process.


Sam required his buyers to go out and manage the department they bought for.


What if as a VO, at least once in your life, you had to produce One project. I think it might change you.


You might appreiciate the whole process a bit more.


You might understand what directors and writers and producers have to deal with.


You might love it and want to do more of it, and learn all about it as well. You never know. 


Mabye that’s just the ‘Radio guy’ in me, but I think it might be beneficial. 




All quotes are from Sam Walton Made in America by Sam Walton and John Huey, Bantam Books 1993


Do you have a book that I might like to read? If it pertains to the world of Voice Over, Creativity, Leadership or Marketing, I would gladly read and discuss it on the Creative Mouthpiece blog! Email me at stu (at) stugray (dot) com


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