I love this quote from Tom Hooper, the British director of "King's Speech", "Elizabeth I", & "John Adams":
"I've discovered that the film culture in Los Angeles is very indirect -- it's almost Japanese in that way," he said. "No one says what they actually mean. It must be why you need an agent, because you need someone to interpret the indirectness for you. It's really quite odd. You'll hear that the person from the studio doesn't want to meet with you because they're afraid that they'll have to say no to you and you'll be upset. So rather than risk saying no, they would rather not see you at all."
WHAT I'VE LEARNED: He's absolutely right.
There are very few people who will give you an honest answer. If you find them, keep them!
For a bigger list of the people you need on your team, read Sir Michael Caine's new book, "The Elephant to Hollywood." He gives an honest summary of what each person should do for you.