Like many, Oksana Steblyk began her career in the ad industry as a runner and now works as post production coordinator at ENVY Advertising. Working closely with the producers and tech team, she oversees and assists in efficient workflows of camera media from production to edit suites and online.
Passionate about encouraging more diverse talent into the industry, in this interview Oksana opens up about her personal experiences, career highlights and advice for new talent.
LBB> How did you first get into the industry and what was your role?
Oksana> My mum could have probably guessed my future career seeing me transfixed to the TV at 18 months… I’ve been pretty enthusiastic about it since.
Like most people I started off as a runner, it was a great way to meet people, gain experience and confidence. I also had the opportunity to run within several companies which gave me valuable insight to the different areas of the industry.
LBB> What were some early lessons you learned in the industry?
Oksana> Starting off in the industry, I felt slightly intimidated being a woman with a foreign name, and was a little concerned about prejudice. These worries luckily went away and I felt this industry to be very supportive and open to all.
Personally I feel respected and recognised within an industry of passionate people as it can be intimidating. At ENVY Advertising, I have a great team around me who have only encouraged and respected me and my work and I very much enjoy working alongside them.
Don’t be afraid if you are unsure of which area of the industry you want to take, it’s ok to ask questions, be sure to jump on any given opportunity or task offered and don’t shy away from a challenge. Put yourself out there and talk to people within the industry - people are happy to help and support a young person with a positive and enthusiastic attitude.
LBB> What do you love most about what you do?
Oksana> I’ve always enjoyed meeting people. This industry is a great one for that, though sadly because of the pandemic that hasn’t been so easy. I really like helping to organise anything that is required and I enjoy communicating with all the teams and all our clients. It can get very stressful at times but working with great people, whether clients or staff, really helps with this.
LBB> What are some of the challenges that come up and how do you face them?
Oksana> In my job I face many obstacles, whether dealing with missing/corrupt media, or handling urgent playouts, it’s important to communicate an issue with the team and quickly look towards a solution together. With efficient communication, any issues or obstacles are often quickly resolved. It can all be very touch and go whilst dealing with several projects at any given time but I really enjoy its fast pace and working with a great team certainly helps!
LBB> What do you like to do outside of work to relax?
Oksana> I really enjoy painting and drawing which is a real stress release, as well as seeing friends and taking weekends out of London to hike and explore a bit of nature, weather permitting…
LBB> How do you hope to grow your role and responsibilities over the next few years?
Oksana> I work with a really great team who are incredibly supportive of my pursuit to become a post production producer. They are always happy to answer any questions and offer advice. They always aim to set me relevant tasks and challenges which help me to gain experience and confidence in becoming a great producer.
LBB> What is really exciting you about the industry at the moment?
Oksana> Whilst recovering from a global pandemic, the industry has had to quickly evolve and adapt in order to continue and succeed. There have been a lot of changes as a result. Changes involving new workflows, and the ability to work from home for both clients and staff. It’s exciting to see an industry adapt and bring a new dynamic to the scene.
LBB> What have been some of your career highlights so far?
Oksana> Firstly working with all the wonderful people I know. It's always great to see a project you’ve taken part in on air and hear people talking about it - both short and long form projects. These are two very different sides of the industry which I am lucky to both work on. It’s fascinating how content of any form is created!
LBB> How do you feel more talent can be inspired to join the industry?
Oksana> It's important that diverse talent’s work is recognised and given the credit they deserve - more often now we are seeing this which is great. I currently work with a great team of women, whom I highly respect, for example my head of production Sian Hagan and the fact that ENVY is co-founded by a woman too. The television industry is a great place to observe strong and passionate women leading all sorts of projects. I strongly feel ENVY is a company which supports and recognises us and our work.