Are women too female to be creative? Is WPP too dumb to ask this question?

Posted by: Bruce Nussbaum on October 21, 2005

So one of WPP Group’s top creative directors Neil French said that women can’t become top media execs because they are too busy having babies and caring for families and stuff. No time for meetings and important things! Where does one begin criticizing this position? Let’s not even try. The great irony here is that Procter & Gamble is one of WPP’s clients and Claudia Kotchka is P&G’s chief innovation/design champion. Women make up 90% of the innovation champions inside major US companies.

I did learn something in the conversation over French’s resignation this morning. In the ad world, there is something called “women creatives,” as in there aren’t enough women creatives around. Ridiculous. But there does seem to be a surplus of men morons.

Reader Comments

Steve Portigal

October 21, 2005 4:06 PM

I wonder if that dearth/surplus has any influence on the advertising-perpetuated-myth that women are smart, patient, eye-rolling spouses to overweight, goofy, self-indulgent, lazy, irresponsible, dumb-ass men???????

Niti Bhan

October 21, 2005 7:29 PM

Hear hear, Steve. As usual, a bulls eye insight from you. I wonder if it's a UScentric attitude? When I was in advertising, the industry had the highest ratio of smart women in India. My sister was an award winning copywriter for 15 years before she "retired" and I recently received a CD titled "Megatrends 2006". It's local indian TV advertising and it blew my mind in it's edginess compared to what I see on the alphabet channels.

Bruce, perhaps design and manufacturing aren't the only things to be outsourced, eh?

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Want to stop talking about innovation and learn how to make it work for you? Bruce Nussbaum takes you deep into the latest thinking about innovation and design with daily scoops, provocative perspectives and case studies. Nussbaum is at the center of a global conversation on the growing discipline of innovation and the deepening field of design thinking. Read him to discover what social networking works—and what doesn’t. Discover where service innovation is going and how experience design is shaping up. Learn which schools are graduating the most creative talent and which consulting firms are the hottest. And get his take on what the smartest companies are doing in the U.S., Asia and Europe, far ahead of the pack.

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