Behind the Selfie Interview South Africa

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    #BehindtheSelfie: Devlin Lakay, senior marketing manager at Sesame Workshop SA

    Meet Devlin Lakay, who has recently joined Sesame Workshop International South Africa to develop a new marketing strategy as the senior manager: marketing and audience development.

    With over 15 years of experience in the marketing industry, including 10 years in managerial positions, Lakay has a wealth of expertise. He has previously worked at both Vodacom and South African Breweries.

    Devlin Lakay recently joined Sesame Workshop SA. Source: Supplied.
    Devlin Lakay recently joined Sesame Workshop SA. Source: Supplied.

    What do you enjoy most about your industry?

    Sesame Workshop plays in the educational media space and our mission as a company is to help get children ready for school. This allows me to execute purpose driven marketing that is impactful and can be measured.

    What is a typical workday for you?

    I work across time zones, so my mornings are filled with ensuring projects are on track, providing support to my team, and take local meetings in the SA time zone. Afternoons are filled with Teams (the platform) meetings to collaborate with my New York colleagues. While the days are very busy, they are very rewarding.

    Describe your career so far.

    I would say my career has been very diverse. I spent seven years in the alcohol industry and then over five years in telecommunications. I’ve been very fortunate to work across all aspects of marketing in great high performance teams. My last year at Sesame Workshop has very interesting as we develop our marketing presence locally.

    What are you currently streaming/reading/listening to?

    I’m an audio book kind of guy. I recently finished Rise, which captures the story of Siya Kolisi. I’m massive rugby fan and Siya’s story is very inspirational.

    Describe yourself in one word.

    Ambitious.

    Who inspires you?

    I draw inspiration from my parents and the sacrifices they made to give me a professional career.

    What did you want to be when you were a child?

    I wanted to be a professional rugby player – think Breyton Paulse and Cheslin Kolbe. For a long time, I thought that would be my career, having represented two provinces in the country.

    Give three pieces of advice for young people waiting to enter this industry.

    1. Be willing to learn and understand the industry, so you can develop the competencies needed to provide value in your role.
    2. Find a mentor and sponsor that can guide your career path.
    3. Be very clear about your goals and ambitions for your career as it will inform the above points.

    About Karabo Ledwaba

    Karabo Ledwaba is a Marketing and Media Editor at Bizcommunity and award-winning journalist. Before joining the publication she worked at Sowetan as a content producer and reporter. She was also responsible for the leadership page at SMag, Sowetan's lifestyle magazine. Contact her at karabo@bizcommunity.com
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