Industry Profile: Havas Media strategy director Danni Dimitri

22 September 2020

Our Industry Profile takes a look at some of the professionals working across the advertising, adtech, marketing and media sector in Australia. It aims to shed light on the varying roles and companies across the buzzing industry.

This week we speak to Havas Media strategy director Danni Dimitri.

Time in current role:
Two years.

How would you describe what the company does?
We partner with clients to help solve their commercial goals by developing meaningful brand experiences across any given consumer journey.

What do you do day-to-day?
Connect with people I work with. Think differently about how to solve problems. Affect behaviour change in ways that lead to commercial benefit.

Define your job in one word:
Curiosity.

I got into advertising because:
As an industry we are so tied to culture and culture is never constant, so I knew I wouldn’t get restless.

What’s the biggest challenge you face in your role?
Synchronising all the various objectives, tasks, perspectives and outputs of everyone involved in a project – it is a challenge but it’s my job to simplify and make sure things make sense.

What’s the biggest industry-wide challenge you’d like to see tackled?
Open conversations that lead to genuine change in the diversity of the advertising industry. Addressing the theme of diversity starts at an individual company level. Ultimately my ambition is to be part of this change at a broader, cultural level particularly in the context of gender.

Previous industry related companies you have worked at:
Most of my career has spanned media agencies – each have taught me something about myself, so I am grateful for the experiences gained from them all.

Notable campaigns you have worked on:
The NRMA Koala project I’ve worked on at Havas in partnership with IAG. This project is all about protecting the home of the Koala, and in NRMA’s efforts to do so, we have helped facilitate the planting of trees, supported the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital and re-homed Koalas. This work genuinely links back to IAG’s purpose as a business, and also reflects back to Havas’s mission of making a meaningful difference.

Who has been a great mentor to you and why?
I have been fortunate to have collected many kind, intelligent & generous people as mentors over the years, many strong women and progressive men, so I cannot name only one. But I can thank them – they know who they are.

Words of advice for someone wanting a job like yours?
Ask for mentors at all opportunities. Work it into your contract, send a note to someone you want to learn from on LinkedIn. In my experience, true leaders are more than willing to give their time, knowledge and wisdom – you just have to take responsibility for making the most of the generosity of their time.

If I wasn't doing this for a living, I'd be:
On stage somewhere making people laugh…on purpose or by accident.

My mantra is:
Haha I don’t have one…but if I did it would be something like have fun, give life and work your all and do your best not to be a d*ck.

My favourite advert is:
Aldi Good Different – it is more than an advert, it’s an enduring platform and philosophy and something the brand can genuinely own as a consumer facing proposition, as well as a guide to steer business decisions.

Music and TV streaming habits. What do you subscribe to?
Spotify, Netflix, Stan, Audible and Calm – across any given day I use them in the order listed.

Tell us one thing people at work don’t know about you?
I do improv comedy. If you want to understand how high performing teams work, entertain yourself with some improv – it’s all about supporting your teammates. It is one of the most fun, silly and meditative parts of my week.

In five years time I’ll be:
A wiser woman than I am now and affecting change on an even bigger scale.

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