Women See Gains in PR Leadership, Yet Balance Remains Elusive

Women See Gains in PR Leadership, Yet Balance Remains Elusive(Anne Green comments), The Holmes Report, March 8, 2019

“Since joining the PR agency world in the early 1990s, I’ve noted tangible progress in the advancement of women leadership in the communications industry. We see more senior female leaders in high-ranking positions at large agencies now. That is a welcome addition to the more established trend of executive women at small and mid-sized firms (which was my own path to C-suite leadership, as well as agency ownership).

Clearly there is much more work still to be done here. But it is not as ‘surprising’ to see women reach that level as it was 25 years ago. Let’s keep the pressure on!

We have made far less progress in advancing women of color and other diverse backgrounds to the most senior leadership positions. They are often moved to start their own firms or join smaller agencies, in order to take on the role of CEO, COO, etc. Fostering greater diversity and true equity in the senior ranks of our agencies is vital to the continued evolution and success of this industry. And this is certainly a priority for me, as I consider the future of my own firm.

Closely related to this, is the ongoing challenge of intersectionality. As in, how can we better allow people to bring their whole selves to work – and to their role as senior leaders? Someone is rarely just “a woman leader” (also problematic at a time when we are recognizing that gender is not necessarily so simple or binary). There are other lens of race, ethnicity, geography, economics and more at play. That should be our collective strength. Yet when we try to put people in simplistic boxes – and ignore the power of their lived experiences and perspectives – we all lose. To me, this is what real inclusion, equity and belonging is all about. I hope that this is our next frontier as an industry looking to have the best, brightest and most vibrant cohort of leaders. ” — Anne Green, Principal & Managing Director, G&S Business Communications

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