27 Oct On The Sofa With OVID Health: Q&A with Roudie Shafie, Partner
It’s almost your 4-year OVID anniversary! How has it felt to watch OVID grow into what it is now and what do you hope to achieve in the next couple of years?
I joined in January 2020 which means I did not have the first year I thought I would! The bond between the small team at OVID back then and our culture of “kindness” meant we could support each other during those early days of the COVID-19 lockdowns as well as grow as an agency. We have grown our clients and people so quickly that every year felt like a new job!
People come into our industry through many different routes and backgrounds. Tell us a bit more about your route into public affairs and policy?
My route into public affairs and policy was a more of a spaghetti junction than a straight highway. I started out as a campaigner in an international NGO, then into the public sector, then the pharmaceutical industry.
You have a wide breadth of experience in public and government affairs, political communications, and strategy as well. Is there one campaign/project that you have worked on previously that you are most proud of?
I fall in love with all my campaigns. I get sucked into the purpose of the project and passionate about its impact. Securing the funding for a UK Dementia Research Institute will always be special as everyone else said it couldn’t be done but I could see all the ingredients were there to make it happen and it did.
Having a healthy life-work balance is key. What do you do to keep cool, calm, and collected?
Compared to the trials and tribulations of raising twins, agency life is cooling and calming! Running keeps me sane, it’s my form of mindfulness, it’s when I get all my wacky campaign stunt ideas or aha policy ask moments.
I’m sure you’re very familiar with the delights from the OVID snack cabinet. Biscuits, chocolate, fruit – what would be your favourite office snack and what drink would you pair it with?
Oh no, this is so embarrassing! My honest favourite is an apple and some cold water. I try to be disciplined on food and drink on workdays.
As head of OVID’s multi-media book club, what has your favourite book/podcast been so far and why?
#New Power was the first book and a great look at the secret sauce for people led social media campaigns. I also loved our first multi-media contender, a podcast on neurodiversity in the workplace.
Schools are currently out for half-term, what does your ideal family holiday look like?
It’s very Jekyll and Hyde – it’s either lie by a pool and slowly melt while reading a good book, or it’s non-stop action-packed cycling and sightseeing trips. A healthy dose of both is the ideal family holiday for me.