Sharing your life lessons and advice

The aim of the life lessons and advice theme is for speakers to share their advice, experiences and ‘life-lessons’ to help students see their potential and opportunities differently. Often successful figures can do this through sharing candid reflections that might challenge what students think is required for success.


Delroy Beverley, Executive Director, Nottingham City Homes

Delroy shares his story and life experiences and how they helped him to become more determined to succeed. He reflects on his beginnings of how he became the first in his family to study at both Oxford and Cambridge University; his appointment as the first ever BME chair of a European international business school and his current role as Executive Director of one of the UK’s biggest housing organisations. After his 20-30 minute presentation, Delroy opens the floor to Q+A. Delroy candidly shares his thoughts on how to approach a job or career, “Be curious- those who succeed are often the most curious about the things they understand the least.”

Staff feedback from his talks has been consistently positive: “As a speaker, drawing on your own experiences as Delroy does can be a really good way for students to relate to you as a speakerThis was evident based on the number of student’s lining up to speak with him after each session. It was humbling to see.


Recommended outline for a life lessons talk

  1. Explain what it is that you do and your passion for your role. How does your role or sector impact on young people and what attracted you to it?
  2. Reflecting on your personal journey and how you got to where you are today. Consider discussing the below with students:
    • Did you know what you wanted to do when you were at school?
    • Have you had several different careers or worked in different industries? Discussing this and transferable skills could help students think about their futures and the paths they might take
  1. Share candid examples of failures and successes and what you learnt from these different scenarios.
  2. What useful advice or mentorship have you received? Was there anyone you looked up to or continue to reference when feeling less confident?
  3. What is it that you look for when hiring? Are there any key characteristics, transferable skills and experiences that you believe are crucial?