We’re back with our latest Meet the team! Today we sit down with our Digital Campaign Executive and one of our newest additions to the team, Sandra Jablonska. Sandra, welcome! Talk to us about you!
So, you’re our campaign specialist – tell us about your journey into this role and what interested you to get into it?
Hello! I don’t know about calling myself a specialist, but since high school, I’ve been interested in advertising, PR, and marketing. I studied communications and advertising for my Bachelor’s and my Master’s degree and have been working in the field ever since. This might sound corny, but I always look for what ‘good‘ a particular behaviour-changing campaign can do in the world, even if its primary goal is commercial, as long as it has benefits to the users and makes their life a little better – I’m happy. Currently, I enjoy communicating the importance of digital identity and building safer and smoother user journeys.
Marketers tend to work in the background a lot of the time, tell us about the importance of marketing in your eyes and from your experience?
Well, the really important, behind-the-scenes work is being done by the tech team, but I suppose marketing falls into that category in some way. I don’t say that to seem modest, that’s just a fact!
I like to joke that the sales teams make money, and the marketing teams spend it, but in reality, we both play an equal part in the business development of the company. I always like to stress the strategic role of the marketing department, and in my past years of working in the industry, I have learned a lot about the importance of the customer journey being the centre of all marketing activity. Also, from a personal perspective, I detest dishonest advertising or marketing that tries to trick the audience, and I know to some people advertising means manipulation, but to me, it means communication and turning the customer’s attention to things that are useful to them. As a company, we have a lot to offer to our clients, and the industry as a whole, and I am happy to communicate that through any marketing work that I do. It’s easy to advertise a good product, you know.
Let’s switch it up, we hear you’re a bit of a cat lover, we want to know more!
Oh, I can talk about cats all day! I actually love both cats and dogs, back home in Poland we have two large dogs, a Golden retriever, and a Rhodesian ridgeback mix, they love to be taken out in a car to the local woods. Here at my home in Scotland, I have a big, black & white cat called Puss Puss whom I’ve adopted from Cats Protection this year. He’s 6 years old and quite anxious when it comes to new people and unfamiliar situations, but really sweet and loving when he settles down.
Aside from cats, tell us something you’re passionate about?
I’m passionate about spreading mental health awareness and championing wellbeing, which is a very important topic, especially recently. I’ve been very fortunate in my life to find myself around nurturing and supportive people, so now I feel the need to give back and help others, wherever I can. I do that by being one of the certified mental health first aiders in the company and I also volunteer in my spare time as a befriender to isolated people for a voluntary organisation in Edinburgh. I don’t want to give out a false image of myself, I’m very guilty of forgetting about self-care myself and I constantly need to be reminded to practice what I preach and remember to “put on my oxygen mask first, before helping others”.
Naturally, I’ve got other hobbies as well, recently I’ve joined a local book club which I help co-host and I’m also trying to get into tabletop games, like Dungeons & Dragons. I’ve always been an avid PC gamer and reader of sci-fi and fantasy, so I think I might really enjoy traditional RPGs.
Sandra, what enticed you into tech and digital identity?
I‘ve always considered myself a “nerdy” and technologically savvy person…that is until I joined an actual IT company! What enticed me was the desire to be a part of the force that brings innovation, but also the problem-solving nature of the work we do for our clients. I’m still learning about identity and access management, to tell you a short anecdote, I believe in my interview I might have said “Asset Management” instead of “Access” – but everyone was gracious not to correct me. Since then, I’ve been learning so much about Azure B2C and decentralized identity, and I really see that every organisation with internal or external user access needs to consider their user journey.
It’s a question I asked our Business Development Manager Gillian and I’d like to hear your opinion too, what are your thoughts on diversity, and what approach would you recommend in continuing to build inclusive and diverse teams?
Can I be controversial? I would never want to work for a company whose board of directors can be described as “pale, male & stale”, which is a phrase I’ve once heard from one of the guests in Brené Brown’s podcast. I see a lot of benefits in teamwork where people have different ideas, experiences, and backgrounds. Diversity is one of those perhaps slightly overused words in the industry, I like to replace it with “inclusivity”, and this is something that is evidently put into practice at Condatis. So, how can we do this further? I guess continued representation and building the right culture, which means being open to new ideas and empowering people to develop.
Let’s try something a little different… I’m going to ask you a few questions, but you can only answer with one word (maybe more than one for the second point), are you ready?
- Describe the Condatis company culture? INCLUSIVE
- Picture this: it’s Sunday, it’s cold and raining outside, what movie are you watching? Recently, Pose – it’s brilliant!
- What’s your favourite food? Polish dumplings
It’s been great chatting with you Sandra, we definitely want to hear more than one word for the final question. What is a piece of advice you received that has impacted you the most? Do you have any advice for young marketers?
I think the best piece of advice I got was from a Glennon Doyle book “Untamed” which was – We can do hard things.
But it’s not understood as unhealthy, hyper-performance, quite the opposite! It implies facing challenges in a kind and gentle way, in line with our true selves.
To the next-gen of marketeers, I would say – take time to realise your strengths and learn to play to them! It took me a long time to gain experience and confidence, but with the right help and support anything is possible, so don’t hesitate to ask to be coached and mentored by your more experienced colleagues.