Our Women and Leadership programme is designed to equip women from across the business with the tools, skills, confidence and support network to progress into senior leadership roles underpinning our ambition to have 40% women in leadership positions, globally, by 2020. In our regular series, ‘Five minutes with’, we catch up with some of this year’s cohort to hear about their experiences on the programme.

Why did you apply for the programme?

In media and advertising’s ever-changing landscape we need to continually evolve, learn and innovate. As a result, seeking new opportunities to develop, expand horizons and self-improve is fundamental to driving impactful change. This is why I felt this programme is an amazing opportunity to be part of the strong female leadership within DAN and that it will provide me with the tools, skills, confidence and support network to progress into senior leadership roles in the future. I believe in putting myself forward for new challenges and opportunities in order to strengthen my abilities and knew that this programme will have a positive impact.

What do you hope to achieve from being on the programme?

Attending this programme will give me exposure to an invaluable network of aspiring women, whose experience and expertise will inspire my individual path, and as a result empower me to be a more influential leader currently and in my future career. I want to define the kind of leader I want to be and the roadmap to get there, developing leadership skills as a manager of managers and creating an environment where people can thrive. Through this programme I want to grow the nous and gravitas to complement the leadership skills, the client relationships and the media knowledge that I’ve developed over the seven years that I’ve been in the industry.

What’s the most important thing you’ve learnt so far?

Learning how to better handle difficult conversations is one of the most important things I have learned on the course so far. Part of being a successful senior leader is the ability to manage clients, teams and challenging situations, alongside the awareness to navigate any underlying politics and building your resilience. The course has provided me with the right conversation frameworks to prepare and effectively engage with any stakeholders which is invaluable not only at this stage in my career but for my future roles too.

Denia Souli-Vounisiou is a Client Account Director at Carat