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Unfucking work with Jimi Okubanjo

Updated: Oct 23, 2022

This week on the podcast Work Pirates are unpacking (and unf*cking!) toxic workplaces with Jimi Okubanjo. Director of documentary film Vanishing Women: Why Senior Women of Colour are Fleeing the Corporate World, Jimi’s expertise comes from her first-hand experience as a woman of colour in the global workplace and London over 20 years.

What is the one thing you would do to unilaterally unfuck work?

If I had a magic wand, I'd make it possible for everyone to see everyone else emotions. I would do this because I feel it would help enhance empathy. With true empathy will come action and kinder action.

Maybe it would prevent bullies from hiding their insecruties and put everyone on an even setting. Even those who are unable to emote would at least be able see how other feel and we will able to see they have not emotion.

What is the best example of unfucking work you’ve seen in the wild?

A maximum security underfunded prison ward in a West African country shared his belief that if an prisoner (or resident) attacked a guard, he would blame the guard. The ward said, it would be the guard’s fault for not properly managing the prisoner relationship.

That blew my mind.

Who is your unfucking work icon? The ultimate Work Pirate?

This is a hard question to answer because I am so new on my journey. I would say Michelle, because she’s dared me to believe that work can be different.

I’m used to admiring what people have achieved, I’m only now starting to explore how they worked and I’m re-evaluating almost everyone I admire.

I’ll keep you posted on this.

Recommend a book, podcast or article to our Work Pirates crew that made you think differently about work.

Codependence Anonymous, while I’m not a member of this group, this book helped me see how I’d taken on a toxic relationship with my work.

I’d recommend this to anyone who’s struggling to find an identity outside of work.


Find Jimi on LinkedIn.

Find out more about Jimi's film, Vanishing Women.

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