Assembly Speaker, 5 November 2018 – Bruce Daisley Vice President of Twitter Europe
On Monday 5 Bruce Daisley came to Camden School for Girls. Having previously worked for other large tech firms such as Youtube and Google Daisley was met by eager sixth formers, waiting to hear about his success.
He started off the assembly sharing advice he had taken from famous guitarist Robert Cray, imparting the words “Think of the first thing that comes to your head, and don’t do it.” This phrase outlined the crux of Daisley’s philosophy and was something he maintained was applicable to all walks of life, telling the students to keep things interesting and individual. Bruce won bonus points within the sixth form audience by detailing anecdotes from his youth growing up in South Birmingham, including the comedic story of his father who drunkenly stole a painting from a local art gallery!
Moving on from the comedy he had brought into the room Daisley began to describe the development of his career. Starting out with his initial determination to work in a record company after finishing university, the struggle to find a job amongst a sea of other applicants hit Daisley. Looking out for a way to stand out in his CV Daisley gave the first example of the application of his own advice, as he showed the intrigued sixth form students the cartoon version of his CV that he sent off after university. This provided Daisley with an entertaining anecdote, and his more obscure, individual way of doing things is what he attributed to landing his first job at Capital Radio and later his progression into the company that owns radio stations such as KISS and Magic. This contributed to the main message of the assembly as Daisley encouraged students to present themselves as interesting and unique.
Using other examples of unique CVs in the format of video games and youtube clips, Daisley advised students to not be afraid to break away from the typical way of doing things. Using the example of the ‘marshmallow test’ which explores delayed gratification within toddlers, Daisley informed the students that, statistically, this test was a good predictor of success in later life - reminding the students of the importance of the message that things can often feel difficult before they take off.
Bruce encouraged students to sell their individualism and use it to their advantage; encouraging them to spend less time on their phones and instead to spend 15 minutes a day enhancing skills that make them both more creative and more interesting in the future. His own success highlights just how important this creativity can be as when he first started a career in radio the big companies he went onto work for, namely Twitter and Youtube, didn’t even exist. Putting his own, personal story of success down to his strategy of constantly learning new things in order to present the most compelling image of himself and to highlight his skills. Bruce Daisley inspired students within the sixth form to focus not only on the mundane requirements of UCAS and A-levels, that are all too familiar to them at this point in their lives but also on the other, more engaging things that make the students truly individual.
Clearly engaged with the advice given to them students questioned Daisley on the issues he faces as the Vice President of Twitter, particularly asking questions on the grey area of hate speech online. Stressing the importance of freedom of speech and opinion Daisley made it clear that, as a private company it was not Twitter’s responsibility to become the arbiter of the truth but rather than allowing the online community to challenge these falsehoods is what makes Twitter such an open space.
Overall, the sixth form seemed impressed by the advice Daisley shared and the refreshing take he gave on how to ‘work’ the system is something that inspired the sixth formers as many of us begin to look into the future and prepare for our own success.
Anya, Senior Prefect