An advertising powerhouse who strives to initiate change in an industry that is notorious for non-transformation.
More black women are required in executive positions in the South African advertising industry. That’s according to managing director at Meta Media, Kagiso Musi, who says she regrets not pushing more black women into executive positions in the industry in her earlier years in the sector.
“I focused so much on getting young black women in and training them at a lower level that I took my eye off the ball of executive representation,” she says.
Musi is one of the few women leaders in the advertising industry, and one of the only black women who heads up a specialist media agency. That, however, is not her ticket to the game. She is bold, intelligent, inspiring and she creates change in any boardroom she walks into.
“The impact will be felt when the force to change is ingrained in more of us and that’s the work I have to do.”
With two decades under her belt in the advertising industry, she describes her field as having been chosen for her by a higher power. After finishing up her studies at the AAA School of Advertising, which at the time was the only ad school, she entered the job market and was put through a gruelling few years of learning the ropes.
“In the early years of my career, great brands and briefs chose me and some of those still choose me today,” she says.
It took her four years to move up the ladder to make it into a senior management position. Her superiors soon noticed her talent and abilities. Musi recalls how one pulled her aside and told her: “We need to find you another job out of this company, because you’ve reached as far as you can go here in such a short time.”
Since then Musi learned to pay it forward and provide opportunities for growth for others.
Her career has been characterised by growth: growth of the people and organisations she has worked with.
“My proudest moment is made up of a series of moments where we have seen growth in the work we undertake for our clients and accolades of that work belonging to a string of people who put something wonderful together.”
She led media company The Jupiter Drawing Room to great success and moved Wunderman from an unknown amalgamation of digital agencies to being a worthy contender. Now she is creating a challenger media and content agency, while also being a shareholder in the country’s only black skincare range, USO.
She brings other women along; she celebrates and encourages colleagues who need to make leaps and is a strong voice for transformation.