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Brittany James

Senior Membership Manager at CLEVER

Brittany has been in the influencer marketing and public relations industries for 12 years, serving as the main point of contact for both clients and influencers. Upon joining CLEVER in September 2020, Brittany was a Senior Client Services Project Manager overseeing a variety of clients, including N!CK’S Ice Cream, Tyson, Ring Pop, and Hotels.com. In her current role as Senior Membership Manager, Brittany works to ensure that our network and programs are diverse, equitable, inclusive, and robust to meet all client goals and objectives. She also supports our current community to ensure they have the tools to grow as creators in the space. Brittany resides in Astoria (Queens), NY, with her boyfriend and enjoys traveling around the world.

Finish this sentence: I wouldn’t be where I am today if it weren’t for ________________.

My mother. Growing up, my mom raised three kids and pushed us to be who we wanted to be and do what would make us happy. She did everything in her power to make sure we received an excellent education and were able to partake in any extracurricular activities that made us well-rounded. Due to my mom’s sacrifices, my brothers and I worked hard to be where we’re at today in our careers and lives.

Resumes highlight professional and educational achievements. Which one of your life or personal experiences deserves to be on your resume?

Since graduating college, I’ve enjoyed speaking with current students and giving them a peek into my career journey and how to break into public relations and influencer marketing. As a student, I valued alumni who came back to speak in my classes and love being able to provide any amount of help to current students to find their passion.

By having a DEI lead and/or team, corporations can set goals that they can measure over time and sustain in the long run.”

What qualities do you look for when hiring someone on your team? What qualities do you avoid?

I look for someone who is willing and excited to take on a new challenge in an industry that is consistently changing. Coming into the influencer marketing industry, no one knows it all, but if you’re willing to learn, be patient and adapt, you’ll be an extremely valued team member.

Is there a time when you were told to change yourself, or hide some aspect of yourself to be accepted or successful in a situation? How did you react?

In previous roles, I’ve shied away from speaking up and asking for what I deserve in my career. Women, especially Black women, are often silenced and told no when asking to be valued in the workplace. In my current position, I am encouraged to advocate for myself and ask for what I deserve. While I still sometimes doubt myself, I have learned over time to be my biggest cheerleader.

Which three books, podcasts, or news sources do you think everyone should read? Why?

You Can’t Touch My Hair: And Other Things I Still Have to Explain by Phoebe Robinson is a great read to understand Black women in America. Phoebe includes humor throughout the book but gives a better understanding of what Black women in America go through. She has two other books that are also worth a read!

Watch “United Shades of America with W. Kamau Bell” on CNN. As a country, we’re constantly learning from others, and Kamau explores communities many have never encountered so we can understand each other better.

Follow Amanda Faun (@arborandwood) on Instagram. She shares a wealth of information and resources on how to be anti-racist and explore mental health.

Diversity, equity and inclusion is front and center right now. How do you express your commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion in your personal and professional life?

One of the main reasons I chose my current position at CLEVER was due to the company’s commitment to being an anti-racist organization through dismantling systems of white supremacy, patriarchy, and other forms of oppression. As the Senior Membership Manager, I not only hold my team accountable for our programs to ensure they are diverse, equitable, and inclusive but ladder that backup to the clients/brands we choose to work with. CLEVER stands by the values we’ve set forth and partners with clients/brands that share the same values.

What do you find most frustrating about corporate DEI initiatives and what’s one tangible step every employer should take to help build a more representative organization?

In June 2020, a lot of corporations put out statements noting how they were going to make a change and support diversity. Many have not followed through and continued on with business as usual.

By having a DEI lead and/or team, corporations can set goals that they can measure over time and sustain in the long run.

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Brittany James
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