I’m Nikki, an internal communications professional
My unique background in graphic design, copywriting, project management, and digital marketing enables me to support communication efforts through a wide variety of mediums. I’m passionate about mission-driven storytelling and helping organizations connect with their communities.
At age 12, I received a special gift from my uncle, Photoshop 5.5 Limited Edition. I used the software to create art, then taught myself HTML to showcase my artwork online. Shortly thereafter, friends and family began to ask me to design flyers, logos, brochures, signs, and websites. As I matriculated through school I utilized these skills to promote school events and student clubs.
After graduating from Spelman College I continued to lend a design hand to various small businesses and churches. In 2015, I started freelancing as a Digital Media Specialist and discovered that clients needed help beyond content creation. They needed strategies, processes and in some cases systems and infrastructure to meet their goals.
In July 2017, I served as a Digital Marketing Specialist at The Oaks Academy through the AmeriCorp – VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) program. VISTA members serve for one year at a not-for-profit organization that helps eradicate poverty. I refined my design skills, took courses on digital marketing, and was introduced to design thinking, which is the foundation of my communication strategy approach.
At present, I am a Communications Specialist at IU School of Medicine, where I’ve applied my skills in cross-collaboration efforts to improve the outcomes of internal communications.
Empathize with your audience. Identify their pain points around communication and where opportunities for improvement exist.
Generate ideas that can address those pain points. Discuss with key stakeholders to see which ones are most feasible and viable.
Test, analyze and bring the vision to life. Have a process for reviewing effectiveness through analytics or other metrics of success.
Nikki developed the Programs Involving Children background check communications plan. She quickly gathered stakeholders’ input, suggested ways to share this message, and asked critical questions. This initiative helped with the schools’ compliance with a university policy. She developed a new newsletter specific to volunteer faculty. Regarding this work, one leader wrote, “her organizational skills regarding a relatively complex new initiative seem to be excellent.” As a result, we are able to engage and support volunteer faculty members in a more meaningful way. Nikki helped develop a platform for executive search committee members and a Dual Career newsletter—she received praise from leaders for both projects. Additionally, Nikki developed a position statement regarding representational diversity and she contributed to a manuscript for publication, which is not typical for our staff to contribute to scholarly projects. Finally, Nikki was critical in establishing a robust communications plan for the first all-school meeting. Her efforts led to increased attendance. Nikki has taken the school’s faculty communications to the next level and helped improve the overall vitality of our faculty.
Nikki is incredible. In the first few months of her role, she had renewed the look and feel of our digital materials, personally produced a beautiful new set of photography and images for use in collateral and refined our social media strategy towards even greater returns. She’s an absolute joy to be around and adds light and laughter to any room or conversation she joins. It’s rare to find such a combination of talent, character, and conviction in one individual. She has an artistic touch to her digital wizardry and the unique ability to help you realize a visual identity for your organization or project that’s likely even better than what you originally imagined.