Viviane Williams founded Wakeup Campaign while doing her Masters degree in Creative Cultural Entrepreneurship (Design Pathway) at Goldsmiths University. The seed had been sown in Ghana in 2009 when Viviane did development work in the small village of Kasapin.
Having been brought up in one of the world’s most multicultural cities - London, going to a convent school in the inner city, studying the arts, business and communication and having extremely entrepreneurial, artistic, academic and liberal, African parents, Viviane gained an insight into many sections of life, society and community.
Doing the development work in Ghana awakened her to how communities worked; how their creativity, positivity, ingenuity and skill came together to make social change.
She also saw that for sustainable development/ change, a community or organisation needs investment, leadership, entrepreneurs and belief.
Her mission is to work with clients on brilliant ideas which will bring sustainable social development. Some people talk about ‘social issues’, but Viviane wants to see more people ‘waking up’ to the opportunities these ‘issues’ open up for new ways of tackling important needs in society.
Honors & Awards to date:
November 2014 - Finalist for the Construction Marketing Awards
November 2012 - Present - Viviane is on the board for the 02 Sustainability Think Big Advisory Panel
September 2012- Present - Viviane was awarded fellowship from the RSA
for the work she has done through 'Wakeup Campaign'.
August 2012 - Awarded for o2 Think Bigger
November 2011 - Awarded at Delioitte pitch for o2 Think Big Award
August 2010/11 - Awarded at The House of Lords: Top 100 UK Future Leaders
July 2010 - Received investment from Unltd
October 2010 - Awarded Future 100 (future talent) from Striding out
June 2010 - June 2010 - Big Leap Entrepreneur Competition: 250 people applied, got through to the final 10 and came 3rd by taking part in the Apprentice style bootcamp for 4 days.
July 2006 - August 2007 - Cambridge Business School of Enterprisers (MIT): chosen to go the program where the duration of my time was filled with exhilarating team work activities, stimulating network building and pitching ideas.
Explain what you do?
I am the founder and creative director of a creative behavioural change social enterprise called ‘Wakeup Campaign’
. We use various design disciplines, interesting methods and processes to help bring social change to local communities. We produce marketing campaigns, innovative advertisements, guerrilla marketing, social media strategies, events management and much more.
What did you study at university?
Before going to University, I stemmed from a fine art background. I studied A’ Levels in Philosophy, Business Studies Fine Art and ICT. I then furthered on to a BA (Hons) I studied Design Branding & Marketing at University For The Creative Arts (Rochester). The course was amazing, it was a mixture of advertising, psychology, marketing and branding strategy combined with visual language and graphic design. I furthered on my education and did a Masters degree at Goldsmith’s University London, in Creative Cultural Entrepreneurship (design pathway).
Did your education count?
For me personally, I would say yes. I went to a girls school from the age of 11-18 years, there I would say I learn't certain moralistic and ethical values, which in directly help shaped who I am today. I later on developed my passion for the arts and philosophy and went to art school where I met diverse people from all around the world. My university experience helped broaden my knowledge in world economics such as; society structures, social regimes and diverse cultures. I then began to deconstruct what I was taught, by travelling and absorbing different cultures and customs, before creating Wakeup Campaign.
When did you realise you had a talent and passion for what you do?
I realised I had a passion for creativity from a very young age. I was always drawing, making, playing adventure story games. I had a very vivid imagination I would say. I loved art at school, I took it on further to GCSE and then A’ Levels. I had a brilliant fine art teacher called Mr Roberts; he really supported my skills and believed in my artistic expression.
Did you ever find your talent in creativity a hindrance?
I did find it difficult sometimes when I was younger, I was always expressing myself creatively through fashion and my artwork, I was very different I guess, not your average girl. I noticed certain people around me did not understand where I was coming from (my ideas and thought processes), I felt slightly alienated at times, but as soon as I went to art school those feeling changed, I was with like-minded people. I began to strengthen my confidence in my ideas and I built on it.
What did you want to do when you were growing up?
When I was growing up, I wanted to be an astronaut. I was heavily interested in science and astronomy, this then later transpired to a love for Greek mythology and reading about all their gods, and then the art world came into my consciousness I would say. My older brother was heavily into fine art, I looked up to him and what he produced. When I was younger I thought, ‘Wow, how did he paint that?’ he always told me to practice, so I did, it’s all about practice!
What’s your daily routine?
I wakeup (no pun intended here :-), check my emails, check my tweets, read articles on blogs and other news related sites, make a nice cuppa and begin my day.
Do you have any tips of stress?
Make sure you have loads of breaks, go for walks. I love to jog so I go jogging quite often (or at least try to); it’s good to get fresh air. Also make sure you try and have a healthy balance by spending time with friends and family you need to have a well-deserved break.
What do you feel are the most important skills to have as a creative social entrepreneur?
I would say passion and enthusiasm. Without these two things, your idea will be hard to come alive. You must be willing to work hard, and deal with problems that may occur. You are a leader, therefore you must have the ability to strategise and show the way. Being an entrepreneur is not easy, there will be sleepless nights, obstacles and setbacks, but you have to be strong and have the determination and will power to continue and go for it! The benefits of being an entrepreneur is that you’re your own boss, you can pick and choose the projects you do, it’s a brilliant feeling!
What is the ultimate aim of Wakeup Campaign?
Wakeup Campaign's main aim is to help our clients through the power of brilliant design and communication
, to change the world for the better!
We are currently producing a sustainable fashion/lifestyle initiative called ‘Conscious Swap Shopping’
, very exciting. At Wakeup Campaign, we are here to really challenge warped beliefs, attitudes and behaviour for social change. I really believe in the quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson; ‘What lies behind us and what lies before us are small matters compared to what lies within us’
, everything around you is created from mans vision’s and dreams, so now we need to WAKEUP
and dream of a better future.