Sage Career Maneuvers From Twitter and Google Execs

Job-related clues based on PRNewser’s archives.

Carousel FinalThe post-holiday job switching phenomenon is in high gear, especially in Silicon Valley. The announcement that Leslie Berland from American Express was named Twitter’s new CMO, and the recent news that former Twitter CCO Gabriel Stricker rejoined Google as vp, policy and communications, for Google Fiber prompted us to consult our event archives.

Sure enough, both executives had spoken at PR and social media conferences in New York in early 2010, and their quotes and actions offer early clues surrounding their respective moves. While New York has a new hi-tech SeaGlass Carousel, those pursuing top Silicon Valley jobs still follow time-honored career advice, more like the traditional carousel pictured here.

1. Serve as a vocal advocate

Leslie Berland was vice president of online communications and social media at American Express when she spoke at the 140 Characters Conference in April 2010. She reported that Twitter was a natural fit for Amex, where the brand took a listening approach. (She could’ve used her comments below in her interview with Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to help land the job):

“Twitter is a perfect match for our card members who are part of a community, and American Express has personal, emotionally driven brands. In the U.S. we launched the program “Ask AmEx” and have been engaging card members in exclusive events only available on Twitter. First we just listened in the space, and we didn’t use any PR, we just let the card members learn about it and use it.”

Mountain View Computer History Museum Noogler Cap Cropped2. Don’t burn bridges

Gabriel Stricker was director of global communications and public affairs at Google when he presented at PRSA’s Digital Impact Conference in New York in May 2010. A couple years later he joined Twitter and became the brand’s CCO. In July 2015 he departed Twitter abruptly, then in January 2016 resurfaced as vp, policy and communications, for Google Fiber.

At his PRSA talk, he gave a “spin-free look inside the company’s communications machine” and characterized Google as “a company with an audacious mission to organize the world and to make information accessible.” Stricker admitted that while Google was not an early adopter of Twitter, it has been “an interesting experiment on an amazing platform for dissemination and dialogue.” He said their first tweet, in early 2009, was delivered in binary code and translates as ‘I’m feeling lucky.’

Stricker’s resilience is clearly about more than luck. In his personal tweets about his job switches, he referred in positive terms to both companies as “movements.” His ‘boomerang’ return to Google is a win for both parties, especially since not all companies have a policy of welcoming back former employees. (Noogler caps are for new Google employees.)

3. Network, since it’s a small world after all

Berland will undoubtedly be busy planning Twitter’s 10th anniversary celebration in March, and Stricker may have his work cut out for him to ensure that Google Fiber doesn’t experience another outage like the one that occurred during one of the World Series games last year.

In the meantime, most Silicon Valley marketing and communications executives will probably cross paths in the hospitality suites at the upcoming Super Bowl in Santa Clara, Calif. So many more head-turning job switches are likely as the year unfolds.