If you look up the phrase ‘Black Girl Magic’ in the dictionary, a picture of Bozoma Saint John, new Chief Brand Officer at Uber, will no doubt be staring back at you!
Having helped to turn the Apple brand into a much-loved player among consumers, she has now been tasked to do the same for troubled company, Uber.
Her enthusiasm and natural charisma are palpable. She first came on our radar last year when we caught her presentation on the redesigned Apple Music service. Her time at the company was an amazing platform. She is now often on lists of ‘the coolest’, ‘most creative’ and ‘most exciting’ people in the industry.
Bozoma recently gave her first TV interview to CBS This Morning co-host Gayle King where she talked about her plans to turn the negative image of Uber, around. She also talked about the importance of representation. “It’s about trying to be the representation for what I want to see,” Bozoma said. “You know, I want change. I want things to be great for people of colour and for women. For us to be able to show up at work, do our best work, and be appreciated for that work.”
Could we love her more? Apparently, yes, we can! During the interview, she dropped some truth bombs about how to negotiate the best salary with an employer. There’s no doubt that she knows a thing or two about getting a good deal, so we just had to share her tips with you, our readers.
When it comes to agreeing a salary? She said:
“Give the number first! Make it high as hell. Because then you can’t be lowballed. But do the work, know what the range is, don’t just call a number out of the sky. Know the range and then exceed the range, because then you can negotiate down, just a little bit. If you allow someone to give you the number and it’s too low, there’s no way you can go back up.”
Bozoma said she learned this strategy through personal experience. “A few too many times I would have a number in my head that then didn’t come out of somebody’s mouth. You get that a few times and you think, hold on, maybe the number isn’t going to come. So, I’m going to ask for the number then, because there were too many times when I would have that number in my head, but no one ever said it.”
The striking, six-foot tall, mum of one has boundless positive energy, that no doubt has carried her from arriving in Colorado as a 12-year old with her family from Ghana, to the successful career she enjoys today. She credits never being afraid and wanting to be the best that she can possibly be in all areas of her life, even when setbacks come, she lost her husband to a rare form of cancer in 2013.
Her philosophy and work ethic will no doubt inspire emerging entrepreneurs and career women. In the early days of her career, when her teams were a lot smaller than they are now, she credits learning the ideals and foundations that still serve her today.
“There were just a few people in the office, so it meant you did everything. It’s the best way to learn. It meant you go get the coffee, copy edit, write a brief, you present, you did everything and anything. That sort of experience level sets you. And that’s what’s carried me throughout my career.”
What does she say to scepticism that she will be able to turn around the fortunes of the struggling Uber? “#Watchmework.” We have no doubt that if anyone can, Bozoma, can!