As the gaming industry continues to evolve, shifting toward more innovative technologies such as mobile and social gaming, it becomes increasingly important to maintain a connection with the younger demographic. Lucy Buckley serves as a natural fit for connection with this key demographic, serving as one of the youngest executives with London-based Inspired Gaming Group.
Having spent many years in the communications industry, representing a broad range of clients including the Economist newspaper, Buckley began her career in the gaming industry five years ago when she was offered a position by her client, Luke Alvarez, the founder and CEO of Inspired.
Buckley remembers this as “an opportunity too good to pass up” and, without a second thought, accepted the position as marketing director of Inspired. Since then, she hasn’t slowed down, and was recently promoted to her current position as director of strategy and communications.
Alvarez is not only the one who hired Buckley, but he has also held a key role in her successful career with Inspired.
“He has high expectations, but is great at inspiring the drive and confidence to be up to any challenge,” says Buckley. She goes on to say that Alvarez is also an exceptional mentor for many people in the company, and that developing fresh talent is an integral company value at Inspired.
Another great mentor for Buckley at Inspired is Gerhard Burda, who previously served as CEO of Atronic and senior vice president at GTECH/Lottomatica. Burda has not only offered an international perspective, but has also taught Buckley how to bring more “big-corporation processes” into strategy and management, while still maintaining Inspired’s start-up spirit.
While she was new to the gaming industry when she joined Inspired’s team, Buckley enjoys many aspects of the industry, including its high growth potential and the global connectively of the industry as a whole. She also feels that the industry can benefit from having younger people, particularly women, take on executive-level positions in the gaming world.
The younger audience is “just as into gaming, but are interested in a more convenient, ‘quick-play games via mobile on the bus to work’ or ‘place a quick bet during my lunch break’ experience… more than having to visit a special destination,” she says. Having younger employees will help target this shift in interest with “everyday” entertainment products and continue high levels of growth in the industry.
In her spare time, Buckley is currently working toward an MBA from Cass Business School in London, and is excited about where her career heads next. She looks forward to becoming a more integral part of the executive team and leading the business into the future in terms of attracting younger audiences, and targeting social and mobile gaming.
Looking back on her career to date, Buckley names her current position as her greatest accomplishment. Being a director with a games and gaming technology company in an industry that typically doesn’t see young women in such a position is a particular point that makes her proud to be where she is.
As a successful industry professional who started her career with limited gaming experience, Buckley has advice for anyone looking to advance their career within the gaming world. “Don’t let yourself be held back by hierarchy,” she says. “Always respect your elders and ask lots of questions, but speak up when you have something to say. Your opinion is just as valuable as anyone else’s.”