Bec Brideson, founder, agency owner, speaker, advocate and author is representing Australia on the Cannes Lions Badass Women panels. Here Brideson writes exclusively for CB.
The first 15 years of my career as a creative in advertising, I assumed the #CannesLions was “not for me” for 3 reasons:
1. Girls in creative didn’t get the briefs that won awards
2. Work that signals “female-lens” hadn’t been judged popular by the panels
3. To judge a lion, you had to win a lion.
In 2007, I wrote to Terry Savage begging for the judging criterion to be reviewed. He listened and the last five years has seen immense growth in creating the systemic change we need. Terry has been a champion for women at Cannes.
I went to my first Cannes Lions thanks to a client and now dear friend. If it were not for her – I would never have thought I had a right or place to go to Cannes. I felt very much an outsider but those six days immersed at the Palais with the rich programme changed my life.
In the last decade, I have come to Cannes four times – now often at the request of Cannes team. Each trip is a growth experience and I can’t recommend or urge more women in the industry that they need to make it their mission to get here.
In 2015, I spoke on the Audi stage at the Palais des Festivals. The preparation I invested in, the intense learning about delivering keynotes and the determination to take my message to do better by and for women meant I levelled up.
In 2017, I was honoured to be a judge of the Glass Lions. With an elite panel of industry heavyweights and incredible people I found myself debating and discussing the strategy, the work, and the values that make Glass Lions the coveted category.
After being a judge, the penny dropped.
I was exposed to global work, perspectives and opinions – immeasurable intelligence that for the rest of my career I had missed out on nor had been exposed to such opportunities.
Its 2019 and I’m back for a fourth time. Speaking on the #badasswomen panel with the likes of Madonna Badger, Cindy Gallop and Shelley Zailis – all women who are mentors and role models in my very own #seeitbeit club.
I am so glad that everywhere I look there are pro-women and gender-equality moves being made by progressive agencies and clients. From #seeher to #freethebid, #freethework , TFQ and the Girls Lounge #takeastand, #unstereotyoe, Getty and Dove doing Girl Gaze and #showus.
I’m launching #womenwithagency this week in Cannes. Check it out womenwithagency.com.
I invite you to join me on the journey because great things #Cannes happen at #CannesLions.