Samantha Ndebele

Senior Account Manager - Healthcare at BCW

What is your proudest professional achievement?

When I worked on a patient advocacy campaign called Shape the Change to raise awareness of sickle cell disease but also to highlight the systemic racism being faced by the predominantly Afro-Caribbean individuals living with this condition. We wanted to hold an exhibition featuring people with the condition. The whole thing, felt like poetry "flowing together seamlessly". This is my proudest moment, working together fluently with a team of beautiful individuals for a beautiful cause. I am still in awe and gratitude of the creatives, communicators, and our photography partner Arteh Odjidja who all came together to help people in a way that made them feel seen and truly understood. 

Which social media platform do you use more than others, and why? 

I try to limit my social media use and connect to people in real life more. With that being said, LinkedIn is my preferred platform because I use it to start conversations about race, diversity, equity and inclusion, the cause closest to my heart. And I have found that it has been the best one to help me build relationships with people who share similar passions. 

What's the secret to good client/agency relationships? 

Be a real person. Beyond what company they work for, clients are real people. In most cases clients are people just like us who just want to feel seen and heard. So‚ see them, good client service will go above and beyond the work and see the person too, what are their professional motivations, how can you help them get there? Tell your clients the truth, challenge them, push them to be their best and show them you're on their side. Treat them like a real person and you'll find that builds more than a relationship, it builds a connection. 

If you could change any one thing about the comms industry, what would it be? 

I would change the whole thing‚ as a black woman, I know this industry wasn't created with me in mind. Hence, I can't expect something that wasn't created with me in mind to understand me. I believe in systemic change; don't fix a broken table, design a new one. The reason we can't seem to get it right was because we keep trying to fix a broken table and it keeps creating more challenges because we aren't fixing the problem. 

What is the motto you live by? 

I am a proud Christian and African, these aspects of my identity have led me to believe without compromise, in unity and humanity as the answer to everything. Nothing encapsulates unity and humanity to me more than the notion of "Ubuntu" a South African proverb that translates to "I am, because you are" which simply means "live a life focusing on humanity to others". This is the motto I live by, Ubuntu, because it reminds me that if I want to go far in life, I need to take others with me.