{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "I’m officially sick of being burdened with solving diversity just because I am diverse, when leadership are only interested in paying lip service to it. Do your job. Set some targets.", "post_id": "5bf142cf5826ce0012c3cc2f", "reply_count": 20, "vote_count": 37, "bowl_id": "58fb054610195e00119fd4a1", "bowl_name": "Confessions" }

I’m officially sick of being burdened with solving diversity just because I am diverse, when leadership are only interested in paying lip service to it. Do your job. Set some targets.

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Don't forget older workers. Ageism is very real in this industry. You think it won't happen to you but it will, trust me.

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I am with you 100%. Ageism is an important issue within diversity but is massively overlooked. As Cindy Gallop says, older workers are experts to learn from.

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I agree OP. It shouldn't be up to the diverse to sort out the diversity issue. It should be up to all of us. Though I don't think targets are the answer. That just makes it a numbers game. We need to create an environment where everyone has the same opportunity. But that can't just be fixed from inside the industry. Its actually more about how people get *into* our industry. So many young people don't even realise the advertising industry could be a career path for them. Never mind one that actively wants them. I'd say that Mad Men image is partly to blame. But we as an industry have a responsibility to reach out to schools and colleges and invite more "diverse" people in, show them there's a welcoming environment (and frankly, a fucking cool job) waiting for them. Which means we need to showcase the people already in the industry who "look like they do". Which means it *is* up to the diverse to be the poster-children for a diversified industry. And therefore it *is* your burden and I've just talked myself round in a circle. Damn.

funnysmart

This is very true. I worked at an agency that formed a diversity board and tasked members with answering the question “how could we improve diversity?” and then berated them for pointing out problems and told them to solve it themselves if it was so easy (without giving them power to do so).

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Hard agree. It makes sense that white leadership would not have the insight and experience to implement needed changes on their own. But that doesn’t make it okay to recruit minority employees to fix their problems on an essentially volunteer basis. And it’s definitely not okay to go ahead and do it anyway, then toss their suggestions out because the agency was really only ever paying lip service to the idea of changing anything in the first place. If they were looking to alienate and disrespect the group, they did it right—everyone I knew on the board left within a year. Nice going, BBDO.

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SC1, that’s outrageous. Leadership are in charge of business imperatives, so why is diversity so often delegated out like it’s a social good project? The people in charge need to see this as their issue to solve. Have some skin in the game. Instead of running away from it when uncomfortable truths inevitably surface. Frustrating.

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Ogilvy 1 - looks like we’re both seeing the clusterfuck of this thing. I totally agree with your point on focusing on the top of the funnel - what we do is simply not aspirational to the next gen. In fact, Jobsite did a survey of Gen Z and found that what we do is one of the top ten LEAST appealing careers to them. Double damn. So ee need to do more to sell ourselves, even if that means diverse people have to step forward But I do think long term targets are necessary. If you don’t know what kind of diversity you’re shooting for, how will change things? If you articulate the from —> to, you can work back from that...

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Agree.

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“Leadership is only recruiting for women and POC” is a code phrase for “I, the recruiter, don’t really have the pull to get you considered, much less hired, and it’s easier to come up with a limp excuse like this to cover for it, and also cast shade on the agencies that don’t consider my candidates."

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@Director1 - where do you work? It sounds utopian!

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Don’t worry, leadership IS working on it. I can’t find work for a Senior position cause according to the recruiters ‘they’re only looking for women or poc’ to fill those open slots.

I meant recruit internally, to clarify. I wasn’t talking about hiring.

You do realize that what you suggest is tantamount to quotas and thus incredibly illegal, right?

No one has suggested anything remotely equivalent to quotas here that I see, D1, so I’m not sure where you’re getting that from. I’m under the impression this conversation is about how agencies unfairly burden people who are underrepresented in advertising to solve a lack of diversity on an agency and/or industry level. But maybe you should check out BBDO, D1, I have a feeling you’d love it!

SC - the OP literally said set some targets and bemoaned the vagueness of most leadership statements on diversity. I’m also not white, and only a minority of my entire group is white males, with leadership having only one (our other leads are from across the full rainbow of people). So I think I’ll stay where I am?

Alright, I missed that. I’m going to bow out. Sorry for misunderstanding.

Hey D1, long term targets are becoming fairly routine here in the UK, e.g ‘we want 40% female leadership by 2025” - is that illegal in the US?

OP - yes, blatantly illegal

D1 - can you point me to where I can get info on that? Everything I’m reading indicates that measurable diversity objectives are seen as a positive thing to do in the states (not the same thing as dogmatic quotas).

I’m not a lawyer but I trust the ones I work with and that’s what they’ve told us whenever this comes up (it comes up a lot). No quotas or quantified targets. No specific references to racial background, sex, gender, veteran status, etc regarding candidates.... My understanding from them is that any of this would give a denied applicant legitimate cause for legal action and it would create a massive head ache for the firm. But we are allowed to care about and celebrate diversity. Just gotta be careful in and around the hiring process

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