Speaker Spotlight: Sam Hailes

Updated: Nov 5, 2018

Tell us an interesting fact about you

I am the proud holder of a Techno Games Bronze Medal. Techno Games was a ‘robot Olympics’ show on BBC Two, which ran for a few seasons in the early 2000s…until it was axed, because it blatantly wasn’t nearly as cool as Robot Wars. Our family built and entered our robot ‘Doggy Paddle Deluxe’ into the swimming event and 11 year old me was pretty thrilled to be on TV at the time. Please don’t look it up on YouTube – it’s a bit embarrassing now.

Why are you passionate about digital?

I can (just about) remember a time before the Internet. Yet I do wonder how we all coped, especially in my profession as a journalist. We used to have to juggle around a camera, a dictaphone, a notepad, a pen and goodness knows what else. Now all of those things have been replaced by one single device – my smartphone.

What’s more, when it comes to doing our jobs, fact-checking is now more or less instant, thanks to Google. Interviews with people on the other side of the world are simple, thanks to Skype. And writing is…still as difficult as it ever was!

Name a hero of yours and why?

Kevin Bennett. You ask ‘why?’. I ask ‘why not?’ Err you probably can’t use that? So how about… John Mark Comer. He’s a church leader from Portland in the US and has written an outstanding book every Christian should read called Garden City. I got to meet and interview him last year and was so impressed by both the man and the message. Buy the book and download his podcasts. You won’t regret it!

What can people expect from your session?

Free money. If only! Err…I’ll tell you when I’ve written it?

What most excites you about # PremDAC18 (other than your own session!)?

I’ve been attending PremDAC since the beginning (long before I worked at Premier!). I’ve always been a huge fan of the event because it’s brilliant for networking, the sessions are always informative and helpful. And most of all it’s just a really fun day out! My only concern this year is the quality of the speakers. Some chancer called Sam Hailes is on the bill…

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It was interesting and helped me think about what we need to be doing. There were lots of ideas about new things we could do.


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