Hey, Sisters, we know.
At the end of January, a small group of us came together to talk about what was going on in the industry and in our offices and what we could do about it. That long night turned into more meetups and phone calls, and hundreds of emails. Many hundreds of emails. Along the way we have grown from 14 women to 200.
We had a lot of questions. We questioned ourselves and each other, and we shared and heard stories that made us both sad and hopeful. As representatives of both independent and holding company agencies, we saw that we had a lot of different processes and procedures that were designed to help but aren’t enough on their own.
We don’t for a minute believe we found all the answers. We found some. You’ve searched and found them too. The answers are there; they just need to be picked up and realized. Answers need to be acted on.
As women in senior leadership positions in advertising, we’ve agreed that we have the power to change this business we love until it looks more like the industry we want to lead.
As leaders, it’s on us to foster a workplace where people are challenged but still respected.
Sexual harassment is not OK. Never. No exceptions. No amount of talent, missed cues, or being great in the room unchecks the No Sexual Harassment box.
Old power dynamics are a lot of the problem. Power that blurs the lines between what you get to do/have/touch/ask for/expect and what you don’t. It’s time to talk candidly about the responsibility that comes with power.
We look at the lack of diversity in this group of women and see the long-term effect of power structures that encouraged some of us to rise but held others back. We see you. We see your talent. We see the gap. We want share of voice and share of power, for everyone.
As we build on the determination of the women and like-minded men in our industry and the agencies who have stepped forward, we’re stepping forward too.
Time’s up, Advertising.
Time’s up on sexual harassment.
Time’s up on lack of representation.
Time’s up on inequity.
Time’s up on silence.
Global IPG Leaders (from our MCN group related agencies) – who have signed this letter and are behind this movement*:
New York (Corp) IPG:
- Heide Gardner, SVP Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer
- Shelley Elkins, SVP / ECD
- Deidre Smalls-Landau, EVP, Global Chief Cross Cultural Officer
- Kate Weiss, EVP, Human Resources Business Partner
- Karen Hunt, West Coast Region President
- Lynn Lewis, Global CMO & East Coast Region President
- Lynne Reilly, Global Chief Growth Officer
US Universal McCann:
- Kasha Cacy, CEO
MRM / McCann:
- Kate MacNevin, Global President
- Deivka Bulchandani, President
- Singleton Beato, Chief Diversity and Engagement Officer
McCann North America:
- Dana Mansfield, Chief Talent Officer
- Nannette Dufour, Global Chief Client Officer
- Marjan M. Panah, Chief Talent Officer
- Suzanne Powers, Global CSO
- Gail Heimann, President
- Sara Gavin, President, N.A
- Margaret Keene, ECD
- Amy Armstrong, US CEOve
North America Momentum Worldwide:
- Donnalyn Smith, President
*Dozens of other IPG agency leaders have signed on this initiative. The above list only mentions agency leads that are directly related to MCN group agencies.