We're done talking when it comes to equal representation
A view from Ali Hanan

We're done talking when it comes to equal representation

Rise, the event for creative women and non-binary people, will be a spark for change.

It's time to Rise on 15 May. In partnership with Campaign, this conference addresses the fact that just 12-16% of creative directors are women. Recent statistics from YunoJuno show that only 13% of creative director contracts go out to women, and for doing the same work they are paid 7% less. That figure is the same across design, film, creative tech and creative direction. And only 25% of creative women, according to Creative Equals, receive any training whatsoever.  

As Campaign’s global editor-in-chief, Claire Beale, says: "Creativity and creative leadership are not skills found more in one gender than another; there’s absolutely no justifiable reason why women don’t have equal representation at all levels in creative departments. That shouldn’t even need saying any more. We should be done saying. Rise is not about saying the right thing, it’s about equipping everyone to do the right thing and to do it now."

Rise is designed to supercharge the careers of creative women, non-binary creatives and their allies. It features a stellar line-up including, among others: Munroe Bergdorf, trans activist and model; Gemma Greaves, chief executive of The Marketing Society; Rak Patel, head of sales at Spotify UK; Mary Portas, founder of Portas and author of Work Like a Woman; Samantha Renke, actress and disability advocate; Nishma Robb, marketing director at Google; Richard Robinson, managing partner at Econsultancy; Syl Saller, chief marketing and innovation officer at Diageo; June Sarpong, TV presenter and author of Diversify; Phil Smith, director-general at ISBA; Meera Syal, actress; and Keith Weed, outgoing chief marketing and communications officer at Unilever.

The event launches as the Creative, Media and Tech Equality Standards gain more recognition in the our industry (for Creative Equals, this "creativity" sits at the heart of all entrepreneurial businesses). As Greaves says: "Personally, I believe it is our responsibility to take part and it’s high time to be an instrumental part of the change we need to see. It takes a brave and committed leader to go through the Equality Standards – only 20% pass first time – but, most importantly, it shapes a road map to follow. At The Marketing Society, we are passionate believers and advocates of the Equality Standards for progressive agencies and organisations."

With Pip Jamieson, founder of The Dots, as MC, this conference seeks to make waves – and history. The day will explore the challenges of the operating landscape in 2019, issues around trust, what’s keeping chief marketing officers up at night, new platforms to play on and, most importantly, Creative Equals’ theme "inclusive creativity".

The event, sponsored by Major Players, Grey London, Dentsu Aegis Network, VMLY&R, Google, FCB Inferno, WPP, M&C Saatchi, R/GA and Spotify, will take place at LSO St Luke's on 161 Old Street, London. Early-bird tickets are available here.

Ali Hanan is founder and chief executive of Creative Equals

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