My hero: Oprah Winfrey, by Nikki Mendonca of OMD Worldwide

26 June 2015 -


A leading figure in the advertising industry tells us how she takes inspiration from the management style of the entrepreneurial “Queen of All Media”

Nikki Mendonca

Through working in advertising for 20 years, I have experienced first hand its evolution into an extraordinary, multidisciplinary environment.

In that time, the number of people who have inspired me have been in abundance and, while our industry’s growth is spearheaded by the best and brightest minds, I’m equally dazzled by the new talent coming through our doors.


When it comes to specific qualities, I’ve always been drawn to people who achieve success in their chosen field through hard work, willingness to learn and their own unique vision. On that basis, my hero is Oprah Winfrey: an exceptional individual who perfectly encapsulates that mindset.

Coming from nowhere, Oprah has fought through significant adversity and challenging circumstances to become one of the most successful women in the world.

I admire her drive, energy and work ethic just as much as her innate curiosity, sense of humour and ability to connect with people on all levels.

It’s no wonder that Oprah is often credited with revolutionising the talk show process – championing a more intimate and empathetic environment than existed in the format before she came along. Her amazing generosity of spirit is demonstrated by the number of people she has helped along the way. A true inspiration.

As the advertising industry continues to develop – demanding more from agencies and their employees on a deeper, more meaningful level – we need to look to the lives and careers of brilliant people like Oprah to inspire us to step up to the plate and embrace the opportunities given to us.

Nikki Mendonca is EMEA president of OMD Worldwide, the world’s largest marketing communications company

Image of Oprah Winfrey courtesy of Ovidiu Hraburu / Shutterstock.

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