Female Creative Directors Seem Different to Male Creative Directors.

Kate Elizabeth Catalinac
Modus
Published in
3 min readAug 31, 2018

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Image courtesy of the author

IfIf I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard that male creative directors are easier to work with than female creative directors, I’d worry less about wage equality.

I’ve heard female creative directors described as being defensive, quick to react, and overly protective. I’ve heard male creative directors described as being funny and confident, as having an ease about them and an upbeat, relaxed attitude.

And I really wish I could 100% disagree.

I know plenty of wonderfully funny and confident female creative directors. I am also lucky to have been helped, shaped, and inspired by the very, very best male creative leaders.

But I’m not surprised that the guys seem more comfortable and at ease.

Nobody can completely control how they come across to others. Not completely. Part of what we’re bringing to the room is built-up dirt stuck to the bottom of our shoes.

I’d love to be more confident, upbeat, and relaxed. Who wouldn’t?

I bet I’d have a lovely ease about me if I hadn’t had so many clients ask me for coffee after complimenting someone else on my scripts, so many directors overlook me until it was time for cocktails, or countless talent and/or actors hand me their admin forms as they walk into an audition, assuming I was doing the filing and not making the decisions.

I’m sure I’d be more patient and relaxed if I hadn’t had to bite my tongue for so many years while I was spoken over in meetings and had to sit there being positive while my ideas were repeated and claimed by someone with different, deeper voice.

It’s just a touch easier for some people.

It’s easier to be upbeat when you haven’t worked all night on a pitch you’re creatively running, written manifestos that make people cry, and presented campaigns you truly believe in, only to be called the Vanna White of the pitch team when you win. I’ll have a “C” for “crushed,” please, Vanna.

It’s easier to be good-humored in a presentation when the client didn’t try to follow you into the bathroom a few hours beforehand.

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