David Ledesma (Journalism ’03) is the new marketing director for Grandvalira ski resort in Andorra. From the time he started university, his goal was: “To be like a sponge and absorb all knowledge”. One day, Ledesma was at a friend’s house and saw a skiing magazine lying on his bedside table. It was Solo Nieve (“Only Snow”), by the Alesport publishing group, based in Barcelona. “I didn’t think twice about sending them an email that very afternoon,” he explains. That was the starting point of Ledesma’s path to become the new marketing director of Grandvalira.
What led you to study journalism?
I am one of those people who, since I was young, had always dreamed about going off to cover international conflicts and tell the world the truth about what was happening in Bosnia, Afghanistan, the Gulf War or Somalia. My influences were Manu Leguineche, Gervasio Sánchez, Ramón Lobo, Alfonso Rojo, Arturo Pérez-Reverte or Miguel Gil who died in Sierra Leone and to whom his colleagues dedicated a book called Los ojos de la guerra: I’ve read and reread it. In fact, it’s still there on the shelf above my bed.
What did you take away from your time at UIC Barcelona?
The truth is that I have a lot of memories and very good ones. There was a great atmosphere on campus, exceptional classmates, which whom I struck up a great friendship that continues to this day. The teachers were very approachable and it was easy to share anecdotes and professional experiences with them. I remember our first meetings of the newsroom for Newsuic, the university newspaper which we founded. In this regard, the university gave me the chance to do work placements in news outlets, where I learned a lot, and which helped me to create my first network of contacts. In addition, I took away a base of knowledge in journalism and communication that has helped me a great deal. And, of course, friendships and lasting memories. It was a great time of my life.
Many students think that Journalism is more closely linked to the media than to companies. How do you see it?
For me, a journalism graduate is an expert in communication. Nowadays, since the emergence of digital media and social networks, we live in a situation of news overload. This means that we need to be very skilful to get our message through. The media communicate with their readers with a vocation for service; and companies, with the same vocation for service, but aimed at customers. More than who provides the information and who is the recipient, it is a question of how to communicate, to convey a clear message, relevant, faithful to reality and believable.
What do you think you bring to your company?
Commitment, experience, knowledge of the sector, strategic vision of marketing and business, resource optimisation, alignment with the shareholders’ objectives and a team leadership based on empowering people to do their best.
What tools have helped you to develop a successful career?
It might sound like a cliché, but for me, success is not defined by a title or a position, but having been able to do what I enjoyed. That has meant that I’ve been continually motivated, which has allowed me to be an increasingly better professional. Curiosity and non-conformity are powerful tools. I’ve always wanted to learn more and to know how things work, and I’ve never been afraid of asking or recognising something I don’t know and would like to. You need education to give you a base of knowledge, but it’s your attitude that makes the difference. That is my tool. Success is being happy.
Could you have imagined achieving what you’ve achieved today?
No, absolutely not. I’ve taken one step at a time, and enjoyed each and every one, but never with a view to a specific objective like a particular job or position. I am here today; tomorrow, who knows?
* Rubén Navarro is a 3rd of Journalism student and member of the Doblecheck, team.