We caught up with Dior Bediako, founder of Pepper Your Talk, a careers platform for young fashion creatives and The Junior Network, a members’ club for entry-level employees. Read on to discover what she loves most about her job, what she gets up to at the weekend and what her guilty pleasures are.
1. I can’t start the day without…
Jumping in the shower within 10 minutes of waking up! I don’t know when I developed this routine but I can’t hang around in pyjamas for long. Most of my friends who work from home are the complete opposite to me and don’t get in the shower until the afternoon. I think they’re insane and they think the exact same about me.
2. Deadlines are fast approaching, which album gets you to the finish line?
At the moment it is 6lack’s latest album ‘East Atlanta Love Letter’. The melodies are peaceful enough to work alongside my thoughts and the whole pace of the album keeps me ticking along nicely. I have it on repeat for HOURS. I’ll then switch to Solange’s ‘A seat at the table’ album for the same reasons.
3. And what snack?
This week it was a pack of Fortnum & Mason cookies. But you can’t call an £8 tin of biscuits a snack. It automatically upgrades itself from snacking to self-care!
4. What’s the best thing about your job?
Honestly, that I created it! It’s probably the single most important act I’ve performed in my whole life. Becoming the founder of PYT and TJN has shown me that I can do exactly what I put my mind to.
The second best thing is that I get to use my strongest skills on a daily basis. Starting out in fashion I became very aware that I would never thrive in a job that didn’t lean heavily on soft skills rather than hard skills. And I’m on a mini mission to help young creatives work on developing the ‘soft skill’ side of their career toolbox - learning the art of negotiation, public speaking and self-advocacy are just as important as learning photography, Photoshop or how to style.
5. And the worst?
I think it’s the fear of the unknown and lack of certainty about Pepper Your Talk’s future. The possibilities are so vast and amazing opportunities have come my way, particularly this year! I’ve flown to Edinburgh to host a Bumble Bizz panel. I’ve had the opportunity to work with many of my career role models such as Funmi Fetto (Contributing Beauty Editor at British Vogue), Tyler Psarras (Communications Director, Farfetch) and so many more. My company partnered with a recruitment agency I used to work for 8 years ago, which was a real full circle moment for me. And I’m super excited to be a main stage speaker at Stylist Live Festival this year.
I have absolute faith that as the business grows, so will the opportunities. Yet, I’m not in full control of who books us or who says yes to us and that is where the doubt can creep in. But as long as I uphold our values and stay true to what we stand for the right people will always find us.
5. What’s your ideal weekend?
It really depends on my mood and the weather! Some days all I want to do is order food in and watch Netflix. Whilst on other weekends I could be out all day, eating, popping into shops and catching up with friends. The only constant is that it needs to include good food.
6. Any guilty pleasures?
I am obsessed with law and crime programmes! I’ve just finished Making A Murderer and I was completely in awe of the diligence displayed by the defence lawyers. I’m constantly making note of new law terms I’ve never heard of such as ‘quid pro quo’, ’Chinese wall’ or ‘pro bono’.
7. And lastly, what are you having for dinner tonight?
I have no idea but what I do know for sure is that there’s no food at home! I’ve acquired a newfound love for my local Chinese takeaway so that’s an option, but I’m also supposed to be eating healthy all month. It’s the classic conflict of my heart vs. my head.