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BIMA100 Voices: Jonathan Dookie
Associations, Award Shows and Festivals
London, UK
The data centre DDM apprentice at Unilever reflects on alternatives to university, interesting changes hitting the digital landscape and overcoming imposter syndrome
Every year, BIMA celebrates 100 of the people who are leading the industry right now. We’re not talking about work and projects – we’re talking about the leaders, pioneers, entrepreneurs and changemakers – the people we look up to. LBB is publishing enlightening conversations with these inspiring people.
In the latest in the BIMA100 Voices series, data centre DDM apprentice at Unilever talks about overcoming imposter syndrome, the impact of the removal of third-party cookies and the value of apprenticeships as opposed to degrees. 

Tell us about your career path – what led you here?

I am doing an apprenticeship as university wasn’t the right career move for me as a young person. I am a much better learner when I can put what I am learning into practice – applied learning. Also, I believe that there are many benefits of doing apprenticeships such as gaining amazing corporate experience at one of the world’s biggest consumer goods companies (Unilever) alongside studying for my qualification.

Who has been your greatest inspiration/mentor to date and why?

One of my greatest mentors has been Kristina Raissi, my Apprentice Coach at Multiverse. She has been with me since the start of my apprenticeship and has been in my corner from the get-go. She has been great at helping me gain confidence in myself and the skills that I already possess. She has been great at opening my eyes to the fact that I am something special and not just average – allowing me to identify and overcome my imposter syndrome. She is such a great example of a leader and just a lovely warm person; I am very grateful to have her on this journey with me.

Workwise, what’s exciting you most right now?

Working in the forefront of the digital space in advertising is such an exciting area to work in because it is constantly changing and adapting to the needs of both consumers and the business. Also, with the removal of third-party cookies it is going to be super interesting to see how companies and media agencies adapt to this change in the upcoming months.

In your career to date, what has given you the biggest sense of pride?

My corporate career began in September 2020 and I have learnt so much about the field that I am in; data driven marketing, and I have developed so many skills both new and existing. I would say looking back at how much I have developed as a person since starting my role is what I am most proud of. Seeing my growth from just a few months ago really makes me happy. Also, it goes without saying, being a recipient of the BIMA100 Award!

What gets you out of bed in the morning? What do you love about what you do?

Something that I love about doing outreach work is that I am doing something that I know I would have benefited from when I was in sixth form. Being able to provide information regarding apprenticeships to young people is something that could make all the difference to a young person that is unsure about what their career path looks like. Apprenticeships offer a great alternative to university which has been made out to be the default or ‘right’ move after A levels, but it’s not suited to everyone and sharing that information and opening up and altering that narrative is something I love being a part of.

What difference has being part of the BIMA100 made – or what difference do you hope it might make?

I hope that when others like me can see what I am achieving as a young Black man they will feel inspired to reach for their own goals and ambitions. Because while the path to success isn’t easy, it is always worth it. If I can help at least one other person see that then I believe that I have made an invaluable difference.