Two of the region’s top Creative Directors (who also happen to be female) took to the stage to move the debate from a gender issue to a business issue. Valerie Cheng, CCO, JWT Singapore ran the numbers to show that women are making the bulk of the decisions in all aspects of the industry (marketing direction, account servicing and, most importantly, purchasing) with creative being the notable and unforgiveable exception.
Polly Chu, CCO, JWT Beijing, pointed out that the agency world has been talking about this problem for years, with very little progress, and is now lagging behind clients – many of whom are asking for more women to work on their business. A slew of recent examples showed that opportunities exist for brands who are prepared to really listen and talk to women – something the presenters believe can only be achieved with more women in creative leadership roles. For those still ready to argue the men vs women debate in terms of creative superiority, this presentation showed the real issue is about sensitivity.