The Driven women of Uber

March 20, 2018 / New Zealand

Meet Tenielle

Head of Brand, Social and Content (Uber and Uber Eats) Australia/New Zealand

Tenielle is a passionate storyteller. She is a published author, songwriter, scriptwriter, television producer, performer, and keynote speaker. Today, Tenielle’s role at Uber empowers her to produce content and campaigns that tell diverse stories that unite and inspire a sense of pride and connection.

Can you tell us about your career before Uber?

My career started when I was 15. I was a presenter in a children’s show and travelled the USA, South Africa, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand performing. I was based in Nashville, Tennessee, and toured 6-8 months of every year while finishing high school on the road. During this time I developed as a performer, script and songwriter, choreographer and stage designer – I could never imagine how these skills would be such an integral part of my future roles.

Once I settled back in Australia, I went to university, did a stint working in PR, and eventually landed a role at a large TV and radio network…and ended up as a producer, script writer and script supervisor for a children’s television show. Once the company decided to put the show up for international distribution, my role transitioned to more of a Brand Management role – I loved it! I eventually left the network and was employee #1 in a Brand Consultancy firm. Our focus was brand and creative strategy, and marketing automation. This was my first taste of start-up life and of leading a creative studio.

And then came Uber…

What do you do at Uber?

My role has two parts: directing our Brand Creative team and leading our Social and Content team and strategies. I’m part creative director, part brand strategist. And I get to lead the most epic team of humans around!

Any career highlights?

The highlight of my career is the fact that I’ve been given the opportunity to tell stories – diverse stories, stories than unite, stories that inspire a sense of pride and connection, stories that bring emotion to a product, brand or company. To me, that is the greatest privilege.

What does the word ‘progress’ mean to you?

Progress is every step you take towards your goals. Progress isn’t a series of giant leaps, but the often seemingly small milestones along the way.

What ‘progress’ would you most like to see for women in our society?

Women supporting women. I’ve been privileged to have many incredible male leaders within my career who have championed me. On the flipside, the times I’ve been the least supported, pulled down or even bullied, has often been by other women in the workplace.

I’m proud to see women raising their voices globally about the progress required against the injustices experienced by women. At the same time, there’s much progress to be made within our communities to see women supporting and championing other women.

What advice would you give to other women on their journey for progress?

  • Know yourself: Roles change, companies change – but you are the one consistent in it all.
  • Know what you’re passionate about: Dive into opportunities and roles that bring those passions to life.
  • Know how you work: Invest in courses, counselling, coaching or mentoring sessions to learn more about your personality and your leadership style. Be self aware but also surround yourself with with a trusted community who can push and challenge you, and can call you out when you need it.
  • Know your boundaries: Know what you will and won’t stand for in your team or workplace.
  • Know your body: Be mindful and alert to your triggers and listen to your body when it says “Stop and rest”.
  • Know your mind: Get to know and trust your intuition, and listen to it in the decisions you make.
  • Know where you want to go: Have clear goals and big dreams, and a plan for achieving them.

Why is it important to celebrate International Women’s Day?

There is an indescribable power and strength when women gather. Now, more than ever, we need to surround ourselves with that force to inspire, drive and sustain the movement that is happening around us. For many, the theme and message of IWD is their daily battle and mission. What a time to cheer each other on, pick each other up and run forward together.