Women making strides in ads

When I read your review of my report, Women in Advertising – ten years on, I felt I had to respond to the negative view you chose to present. Advertising is a great industry for women.

We have four times as many women on the board in advertising as a FTSE 100 company and five times as many in senior management. While we still have some way to go to reach parity (as do most industries) we are moving in the right direction, with 50 per cent more women on the board compared with 1990.

As more women progress through the ranks, more women are achieving board level, as witnessed by account handling where numbers have doubled over the same period.

The skills and management styles that women possess are now recognised as being the skills and styles that are shaping the successful businesses of tomorrow.

Yes, there is still a lot of work to do in the creative field, but this is the sole area where we have regressed, and it is a tribute to the industry that the creative world is taking these findings seriously and trying to do something about them.

The key point that your review failed to cover is that, as an industry, we are looking to the future and to the changing attitudes of young people towards the workplace. Work-life balance is now an issue for both women and men and the industry needs to consider how it will reflect this growing imperative in its working culture to ensure that we continue to both attract and retain the top talent we deserve.

Debbie Klein

Head of planning


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