My name is Gabi, and I’m a Strategist at Ogilvy UK. I joined the agency as part of its first intake of apprentices in 2018 and have gone from strength to strength like Advertising, PR, and Social & Content. In 2019, I launched ReWired, Ogilvy’s first network dedicated to neurodiversity, while I was six months into the apprenticeship programme. (Arguably quite a neurodivergent thing to do in itself). I champion neurodiversity in the workplace and believe diversity of thought is crucial to creativity. In my spare time, I am an avid gamer, I often draw and write, plus I love giving tarot readings and writing letters as Santa Claus for charity.
The idea of ReWired is to help Ogilvy and our employees discover the wondrous world of neurodiversity that our staff possess and celebrate their strengths in the agency – just as I had in my role. To have true equality, you need to make sure you have equity, meaning you give people what they individually need in order for everyone to thrive.
I started my career with my heart on my sleeve and mask aside. I am thrilled Ogilvy saw my potential from who I am, what I could grow to be, and brought in other neurodivergent talents with my guidance. As my career progresses, I have found that while I may sometimes struggle, being a strategist is suited to me. I can play to my strengths in finding patterns and deep thought to build creative campaigns. My best advice has always been to keep on communicating. Talk about neurodiversity with colleagues, discuss your needs, and make reasonable adjustments with managers. Suppose you feel safe and comfortable; being open about neurodiversity helps the conversation move away from the stigma. It also allows you to work in conditions that you know work better for you and give you the space you need without feeling like you have to use so much energy trying to fit in and not be yourself (something I used to always get upset by growing up as I felt like no one really knew me for the true me.) Through ReWired, I am keen to help craft a narrative, help people better understand and celebrate neurodiversity, and, ultimately, never have to apologise for being my marvellous self.