3 Things You Can Learn From David Cameron’s Hair

“Which of the leaders would you Shag, Marry or Kill?” This was an important question spreading around Twitter like wildfire during the recent televised Leaders Debates between the heads of the 3 biggest UK political parties.

If you need help deciding, look no further than the in-depth commentary on David Cameron’s hair (“reminds me of a nesting dove”).

Another popular trending topic was #NickCleggsFault – as in, “My Indian takeaway is late, it must be #NickCleggsFault”. I’d explain the background to that, but if you’re interested, just Google it. Or look up my Twitter feed as I confess that I took part in this Very Important Commentary (ha!) during what was supposed to be a serious debate.

But that wasn’t all that was going on.

The Twitterati are not just comprised of geeks with opinions (no!), but of journalists, think tankers, academics, and people who know quite a lot about quite a lot of things*.

So, also Tweeting about during last night’s debate were deconstructions of inaccuracies, u-turns, inconsistencies and any sign of less-than-robust thinking from any of the leaders. (As you can imagine, Twitter went over capacity at one point).

Even if you don’t have Prime Ministerial aspirations, or a Twitter account, there are 3 important things you can take from this, as you create (or live) your own ‘free range’ career.

1. Information is accessible to everyone: Experts are more accessible than ever (want to engage with your brain-hero? Get their attention via a social network. It might take months, but previously it would not have been an option unless you got yourself a book deal and a big profile).

2. You can have your say and be heard: If you know a lot about/are passionate about a certain topic, you can with the click of a button(ok, and some quality relationship building and timing), engage with others who have been thinking about/working in that area.

3. People are not stupid: The ‘new commentators’ are smarter than ever. Mismatches between who you really are, what you really stand for and the ‘brand image’ you try to create are no longer tolerated. Every ‘scripted’ and ‘communications-trained’ twitch of the 3 politicians was noted, and contrasted with their reality.

This is a Very Good Thing for you. If you start out on your own, stop worrying about how you ‘should’ look, and forget about old notions of branding. Make your message, your identity and your offering all the same thing. That is the meaning of a good personal brand: something real.

Get this right, and people will respect you and listen to what you have to say, faster than ever before.

And if not, don’t worry, it’s just #NickCleggsFault

* Of course I am not saying that being a journalist, think tanker, or academic automatically means you who know quite a lot about quite a lot of things; but luckily, the two do occasionally coincide.

Would you rather Shag, Marry or Kill this article? Leave me your comments below!

  • Woo-hoo! What a ticklingly wonderful article, chortle, chortle! Thank you! And that pic of Mr Brown is *darling*.

    I will giggle over this often today. Hopefully this mirth will cancel out the hideous, lurid, frankly disturbing images invoked by my consideration of elected candidates for Shagging, Marrying and Killing constituencies.

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