Alexis Caught – Podcaster
Queer Careers is an ongoing series featuring out-and-proud professionals. We want to present a wide range of successful careers to inspire everyone to be braver, aim higher, and be the most successful you, that you can be. This time we speak to Alexis Caught (Lex), who describes himself as, a writer, a rugby player, and a social media influencer. Alexis also co-hosts the podcast – Qmmunity. You may know him already from Instagram as ToddlerLex.
Hey Alexis, where are you from/where did you grow up?
“Hello ROMEO, you can call me Lex, if you like. I grew up between London and Surrey . The upside of having separated parents was that my time split was between city and country. My mid-term holidays were spent down in Devon visiting my farmer grandfather, getting muddy and being chased by cows. It was a nice and varied way to grow up.”
Tell us a little about your career?
“For years I was a Management Consultant. I specialized in corporate strategy (the business of business, how companies grow, operate, compete). But I recently took a leap. I resigned from my stable corporate career to try and turn my hand to creative work. I’m launching Qmmunity, a podcast that focuses on the LGBTQ community.”
What’s gay life like where you live?
“I think the easy answer is “great!” London’s a really big and diverse city, renowned for being one of the most gay-friendly places in the world. However, the real and more nuanced answer is – it’s getting harder. Queer spaces are closing in London, hate crime statistics are increasing, people are being priced out of neighborhoods. We’re in changing times.”
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Lets Get Personal
Are you single?
“I am. After my last relationship I needed some time to rebuild myself and figure some of my shit out. I think I’ve done a pretty good job of it, and feel ready to be in a relationship again. That being said, it couldn’t be just anyone. There’s a list as long as my arm of things I need in a prospective partner; a sense of fun and adventure, a kind-hearted nature and, most importantly, the confidence to call me out on bad behavior & my bullshit.”
What would you like to be doing 5 years from now?
“I used to be very strict with myself and goal oriented. Years ago I set myself deadlines related to career and what I wanted to have achieved by certain arbitrary dates and ages. While it was good for a while to keep me moving forward and progressing, it also wore me out and placed a lot of unnecessary pressure on me. So honestly, now I don’t know what I want to be doing in 5 years time. I just hope it makes me happy, pays my bills, allows me time to see my friends, train, play rugby, get a dog and maybe even date.”
Qmmunity and Social Media
Can you talk to me a little about Qmmunity?
“Qmmunity was an idea I’d been slowly building in my head for the last couple of years. I was daydreaming about life outside of the office, and I finally took the jump. The gay community has apparently won full legal equality. The future is bright and we can assume the days of protesting for acceptance are behind us. We’ve never had it so good. We’ve won everything, haven’t we? And yet lots of us, myself included, feel lost and confused, questioning what it actually means to be LGBTQ. My podcast, Qmmunity, is about exploring identity and our community – Christania and I, certainly don’t have all the answers, but we’re going to try and speak to people who might help us fill in some of the blanks.”
What is different about Qmmunity from other queer podcasts?
“What we’re trying to do, is find a middle ground between all the different factions of our LGBTQ community, and that hasn’t been done before. One person, and specifically one type of person, can’t speak for a whole diverse community. That’s why I’m so pleased to be working with my brilliant co-host Christania, as we come from different backgrounds and life experiences. By us coming from two places, and interviewing people from our different perspectives, we’re able to create a show that we hope people will feel not just reflects them, but also gets them to consider another person’s perspectives and experiences.”
Any advice for would-be influencers and future journalists?
“My best career advice came from my Mum, “be willing, be available, be nice”. When you’re working in any industry, there will always be somebody more qualified for the job, but how you do the job can be what sets you apart. Do it with a smile, be available, be good to people you meet along the way, and that’s what builds your career. In terms of surviving online, you have to draw your boundaries. So for instance, while I have a rule about replying to comments, I also have a rule about not looking in the “filtered mailbox” – in there trolls lie. So for your own self-preservation, stay out of there.”
Career highlight to date?
“In 2015 Harvard Law School published a case study I wrote, and invited me to give a guest lecture series. This was a huuuuge achievement for me. I barely scraped through my A-Levels. To have turned myself around, applied myself, and had a piece of work published by the top university in the world, was a huge moment for me. Plus, I’m not naturally comfortable at public speaking, so forcing myself to step out on that stage and give a talk to a room full of students felt like I’d really come a long way.”
How true to life is your digital self?
“These days, I’d say pretty close. At first, like a lot of people, I felt a pressure to only capture the best parts of my life. To be honest, that just felt shit. One day I posted about the fact I was having a tough time. I’d had a breakup that had shaken my self-confidence & belief, and I was feeling really bruised. I decided to drop the mask that we all put on, and the response was really touching. The connection that you can make with people when you’re candid and human is lovely, and it’s a relief not always to have to pretend everything’s great. If I’m feeling low or down, I’ll be honest, I’ll take breaks from social media & explain I’m having a digital-detox.”
Even more Lex and Qmmunity
To find out even more about Lex, follow him on Instagram and to find out more about Qmmunity the podcast, including tickets to the live recordings of their shows, just visit their website and follow them on social media.
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Enjoyed this story? Then be sure to read the previous Queer Careers interviews: