Amanda Jayne (AJ) is a Programmatic Account Director at Numodo and co-leads the day-to-day running of the business. With over seven years’ experience within the media industry, she is passionate for teaching others about programmatic and creating opportunities for the next wave of talent. Alongside her day-to-day role, AJ is also on the senior leadership team for Bloom Scotland and is responsible for co-leading the event team alongside Claire Mathieson. This year she was also awarded the WACL Talent Award 2023.
What are the biggest challenges and opportunities for women in your sector of the digital industry today?
This is a slightly wider issue… however the Programmatic industry is notoriously London-based – most of our tech partners, media owners and events are there, and that can be a massive challenge when you are based in Scotland.
I am going to be honest, sometimes we feel a little bit forgotten up here. It does mean we have to work so much harder to build strong relationships, attend industry events (lots of train travel involved!) and even hear new industry updates. After Covid and the growth of virtual meetings, this has created an opportunity and I do feel like our industry are looking outside London for growth, however that does often feel like it stops at Manchester.
There is a lot of programmatic talent within Scotland, as well as innovative media firsts and exciting campaigns – however as we are a lot smaller, a lot of this gets slightly lost in the noise of our industry.
To tackle this, one of the biggest opportunities for women within Scotland are the incredible support networks that we have. I am a member of The Women in Programmatic, as well as Bloom Scotland, and the level of knowledge and guidance provided within both these groups is inspiring. Although our industry continues to throw curveballs in our direction from new updates to tech changes, these groups offer a sounding board regardless of location.
As these groups grow, so will opportunities for women in Scotland. I am confident that women will continue to lead, teach and support each other whilst navigating any challenges.
If you are reading this and are based in London and you want to chat programmatic… we love having guests in our office – so please visit us! I can offer a nice cup of tea, a view of the castle and a room full of people excited to meet you!
What does the industry need to do to better champion women?
The answer has always been there – it is all about representation and this cannot be understated. When I first started my career over seven years ago, the senior leadership team around me were majority women. They led with compassion, an eagerness to teach others, as well as a desire to always leave the door open for the next to follow.
The more I progress in my own career, I realise how much I learnt from them and how much I inspired to be like them and pass on opportunities that they gave to me. This is the direct ripple effect that representation can have – I have always felt like I could progress within my career, as I was surrounded by women that already had. Within my own company, I look around and see inspiring women who are succeeding and driving change – such as Francesca Coia who implemented the Period Policy and the Career Ready programme within our business, or Gill Jarvie who continues to support women within The Freethinking Group, as well as our wider industry as IPA Chair for Scotland.
It is vital to have women in key decision making roles to ensure that issues that impact women are raised, as well as policies put in place to protect and support women. I feel in a lucky position to be in an industry that does highlight women, but if we are going to talk-the-talk, we first need to walk-the-walk. It is important for our industry to continually audit what is currently being done and making those small changes which can end up having a significant impact. I
It is equally as important that men, particularly senior men, are involved in this journey. I remember once reading a post by Amy Kean about when she creates a women-only initiative, someone will always say “where are the men?” We need our industry to continue to call out “where are the women?” be that in a panel, opinion piece, in the senior leadership team or at the top table making decisions.
What is the biggest misconception about women and by women in the digital industry?
The first thing that pops in my mind is a conversation I recently had with my friend and mentor, Daniela Gauntlett. There was a recent period in my life in which I honestly felt like I was spinning far too many plates, and on a phone call to Dani she recommended that I simply just put some back into the cabinet. We spoke about priotisation and simply saying ‘no.’ She had mentioned a book, ‘Essentialism’ by Greg McKeown which talks about doing what matters without feeling exhausted and burnt out.
Where I am going with this is that I think a misconception that women can sometimes have is that they can’t say no and that to succeed they have to do it all. I am definitely guilty of this, but I have started lowering my hand and focusing on a few things that I feel passionate about and have enough energy and time to make a positive change on. By saying no, it also offers someone else an opportunity to say yes and make their own success from it.
What is your biggest achievement in digital to date?
My current role within Numodo is my biggest achievement in digital to date. When I moved from London to Edinburgh, I didn’t think I would ever have the opportunity to work in the programmatic industry in Scotland and I am genuinely so proud to be part of a team of people who are so passionate about shaping and driving the programmatic industry forward in the North & Scotland.
Dan and I co-lead the day-to-day of Numodo, a small (yet mighty!) programmatic trading desk based between Edinburgh and Manchester. The teams desire to deliver innovation and go beyond what is expected is continually inspiring and any achievement, big or small, always feels like a massive win.