AdNews, in partnership with the MFA (Media Federation of Australia), presents a series of articles from members of the MFA's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Advisory Council. The body promotes the MFA’s ambition to build a diverse, equitable and inclusive industry:
Philippa Moig, Business Director, OMD Australia
“I loved witnessing Kim Hamilton being promoted to MD while she was still on parental leave! These are bold, supportive actions that say ‘we support you, and we aren’t afraid to lead the charge in creating equal opportunity’.”
What motivates you to advocate in the area of diversity, equity and inclusion?
I am a firm believer that unless you can see it, you can’t be it, and history has taught us this lesson well. There are still far too many people in Australia who can’t see themselves reflected back in society.
What drew me to the MFA Advisory Council was the emphasis on representation and inclusion, and the positive impact this can have on our colleagues, friends, networks and broader communities. Imagine the power of everyone in our industry feeling a deep enough sense of belonging to bring their authentic and amazing whole selves to work every day!
Together, we can be the #1 changemaking industry that creates a more inclusive Australia, and one that better reflects all of our people. I feel passionately about our industry paving the way for a stronger future for everyone, regardless of where they work.
We can create this together through great policies and initiatives, but also through our daily decision-making. Who are the faces and people that front our marketing campaigns? Will my recruitment strategy attract diverse talent? Is our pitch casting representative? Are we telling the right stories?
One of the MFA’s aims is for the DE&I Advisory Council to highlight simple actions individuals and companies can take to encourage and promote diversity, equity and inclusion. Can you share a positive example of an interaction with colleagues or clients during which you felt seen and included?
What types of actions help and support people?
We all feel seen when the people we work with take a genuine interest in who we are as people, understand what drives us, and what we are most passionate about.
When we take the time to connect with someone, especially as leaders, we are significantly better placed to create the right opportunities to help that person thrive and grow personally and professionally.
On a personal level, I’ve never experienced such a sense of belonging, empowerment, and support to be my best and whole self, as I do at OMD. I’ve been extended personal and professional support, leadership opportunities, and financial backing for personal coaching. OMD has been an instrumental shift for me. I no longer feel torn when a personal crisis arises. It’s completely acceptable that my family comes first. This is something equally valued and emulated by all OMDers.
I’m excited to work in a business radiating strong female leadership. Locally, we have two amazing MDs who happen to be women, powerhouse leaders, and mums. I loved witnessing Kim Hamilton being promoted to MD while she was still on parental leave! These are bold, supportive actions that say ‘we support you, and we aren’t afraid to lead the charge in creating equal opportunity’.
Marrying a Wiradjuri man has given me the opportunity to better understand Australia’s complex, beautiful and largely untold history. I am continuously in awe of our First People’s resilience and their enduring deep connection to country and culture. Living in, and on a country that has a 60,000-year-old story provides our industry a plethora of opportunities to learn from Indigenous Australians socially, culturally and environmentally.
Through OMD connecting with me as a person, I have been able to play an active role in the areas I am most passionate about. It has opened up doors for me to work with the OMG RAP committee, to engage Indigenous changemakers and help raise the level of awareness and education around the significance of Indigenous Australia.
Investing in our people on a personal level builds a sense of belonging and inclusion. This is particularly important when it comes to DE&I. The fact of the matter is we aren’t always going to get it right, all of the time. However, if our people feel safe to contribute to the conversation and are encouraged to participate, the foundations are set for us to always be learning, improving and driving momentum and action in this space.
How would greater diversity and inclusion impact our industry?
Greater inclusion within the media and marketing space will drive deeper diversity of thought, increase creativity, and enrich our perspectives on what we are solving for and how we best go about that.
In our industry, we are all storytellers of sorts, and that is a powerful and privileged position to hold. We have the capability to better reflect all parts of Australian society, at scale. Diversity is shown in the stories we choose to surface, who produces those stories, who is cast in the stories, and the platforms the stories live on. (You’ll often find my family watching NITV or SBS. I absolutely love the content, characters, and sense of community this network has been able to build.)
Bringing diversity and inclusion to the forefront of our conversations, workplaces and decision-making will break down lingering barriers, and help us build stronger workplaces that better represent people of all ages, genders, physical ability, cultural backgrounds, First Nations peoples, and the LGBTQI+ community.
There is a tangible benefit to our industry in deepening the sense of belonging and inclusion. Diversifying the talent in our industry will surface new perspectives, enhance creativity, foster innovation, and ultimately create a better understanding of our customers and help us connect in more meaningful ways.