With Black History Month drawing to a close, we spoke with Promise Asaenaepha, our Brand Coordinator about the importance of Black History Month, the 2020 Levels programme and catering for the global majority who may come from disadvantaged backgrounds.  

  • Where did you hear about the 2020 Change programme, and what were your aspirations going into it? 

I had a few friends that participated in the programme and were able to build strong connections with other young adults and gain career opportunities. 

I was keen to expand my network and build new connections, especially with experienced professionals that worked in marketing – as I was looking to learn more about the industry and gain opportunities.

  • How and when did you join Team VMO2? 

I joined Virgin Media O2 in October 2022, months after I attended a 2020 Levels job fair. At the job fair, I had a conversation with two members of the VMO2 Brand team regarding my interest in marketing. They brought the Brand Coordinator role to my attention and encouraged me to apply. 

I decided to go for it but thought it would be a good idea to do something different – to stand out of the crowd of applicants. I recorded a short ‘get to know me’ video and sent it to the hiring managers, alongside my CV. The ‘get to know me’ video gave an insight on my personality, hobbies and interest but also highlighted what I had to offer the Brand team. 

  • With the new cohort taking place, how do you think VMO2 can support those on the programme? 

The alumni members would benefit from hearing the stories of experienced professionals within the business, from diverse backgrounds – including different educational backgrounds. This would create room for relatability and inspire them, by helping them understand that they are not limited by their background, lack of experience or education. 

  • What are your main takeaways that you still use after graduating from the programme? 

I learnt the importance of networking and mentorship. The programme gave me the opportunity to share my story and aspirations with experienced professionals, who offered me mentorship and connected me with others in spaces that I aspired to be in – leading to me being offered work experience and internship opportunities at big and well-known businesses. 

  • As we embrace the theme “Saluting Our Sisters” this Black History Month, what does this mean to you? 

I find the theme “Saluting Our Sisters” really inspiring, as it’s a good reminder that I can achieve anything I put my mind to, not only as a woman but a Black woman. It also encourages me to own who my being, in any space that I am in – regardless of the differences I have to those around me. My differences such as my colour, hair, culture, upbringing and experience doesn’t make me alien, nor ‘unique’ – it just makes me human and makes me – me. 

  • How can VMO2 proactively ensure its recruitment practices champion diversity and accurately represent a blend of cultures, backgrounds, and experiences? 

I think that it’s important that Virgin Media O2 look beyond the conventional requirements for a role, but encourage individuals from diverse backgrounds to apply, especially those with limited experience – as the global majority may come from disadvantaged backgrounds, with a lack of recourses and experience. It’s vital that they’re not defined by their disadvantages but are defined by their potential and drive – giving them to step into a role where they can thrive and fully manifest their skills. 

Most importantly, Virgin Media O2 have a healthy and a psychologically safe environment for the global majority to not only feel comfortable but thrive in their role and teams – supported by the internal employee networks including Enrich, the Women’s Network, Proudly and Neurodiversity.  

  • What do 2020 Levels and Black History Month have in common? 

2020 not only encourages the Black community but celebrates their success, and they do so every day – not only during Black History Month. 


Journalists can contact the Virgin Media O2 press office on:
press@virginmediao2.co.uk 01753 565656
Virgin Media
press enquiries
press enquiries