Today, women around the world celebrate International Women´s Day. At present, The Film Agency is formed by an all-female team of 5, so we feel strongly attached to the feminist wave that is shaking up the cinema industry right now. Although when we started this company we felt that opportunities were equal for everybody, after 6 years of female entrepreneurship we feel they are not. To contribute to this conversation, we wanted to share with you today our Five Commandments (and One Golden Rule) for Female Support.
1. LIFE-WORK BALANCE – ‘MAKING A LIFE, NOT MAKING A LIVING’
One of the pillars of our agency is to provide a good life-work balance, crucial when you want to raise a family or, simply, enrich your life with something other than work! We manage to remain creative, enthusiastic and open because we don’t work ourselves to death. We do that by supporting each other as a generous team and allowing a great deal of independence and freedom when managing our workload. Having a common life calendar during working hours, choosing when to work from home (or elsewhere) and respecting our own personal time, are just a few of the general tools that we use on a daily basis to work (a lot!), but not overwork.
2. BOOSTING YOUNG WOMEN´S CAREERS AND LOOKING AT THE LONG TERM
In The Film Agency we invest time in people´s development and think of their long-term growth. In terms of securing this long-term progression, in The Film Agency we create ways of embracing maternity –creating the internal mechanisms to combine work with raising a child -, promoting career development and encouraging our team to continuously learn new things. We not only think this has a direct impact on the agency´s future success, but also on the progress of the industry and the happiness of the professionals that work with us.
3. MAKING OUR CLIENTS AWARE (OVER AND OVER IF NECESSARY) OF THE IMPORTANCE AND VALUE OF FEMALE AUDIENCES, CHARACTERS AND TALENT.
As all the research studies show, women –especially women over 50 – are the core consumers of cultural activities in Europe. They are called the “Silver Audience” or the “indie Movie Selectives” and you can see them at cinemas, art exhibitions, reading clubs and the theatre. Just look closer. It is a fact that this audience segment is usually undermined and underseen. In The Film Agency, we rigorously work with data and insights to make our clients aware that the placement of women’s stories and the presence of female talent and artistry are key, relevant and important.
4. CONTRIBUTING TO THE VISIBILITY OF FEMALE ART, CULTURE, STORYTELLING AND CINEMA FOR NEW AUDIENCES
We are very aware of the importance of giving visibility and space to women´s talent and creativity. We are very proud of those inspiring female individuals that we have had the opportunity to work with. From female directors and writers such as Agniezska Holland, Alice Rohrwacher, Anahí Berneri and Maren Ade, to all those anonymous women working in the industry ‘behind the scenes’. We have witnessed their efforts and professionalism, their willingness to always go that extra mile in order to achieve their goals. Because we are proud of them (and of ourselves) and are aware of the difficulties we face, we try to get involved with communities, associations and collectives that support female talent and entrepreneurship. We have recently joined CIMA – the Spanish association of women film and audio-visual professionals, and we actively take part in Women Entrepreneurs groups and gatherings. We share our knowledge in gender-equality responsible organisations like EAVE or FACTORÍA CULTURAL.
5. REDIFININGTHE BOUNDARIES OF HIERARCHY AND EMPOWERING FEMALE PROFESSIONALS
We strongly believe that vertical hierarchical company structures are inherited from the so-called ‘patriarchy’. This is an archaic structure that diminishes internal democracy and has a negative impact on team building and team commitment to the organisation. We also try to honour our ethos of innovation and forward thinking by supporting women professionals and entrepreneurs on every possible occasion. We strive for a horizontal structure, where all opinions and ideas are important and taken into account.
ONE GOLDEN RULE – SIMPLY, RESPECT PEOPLE REGARDLESS OF THEIR GENDER
This is self-explanatory… or is it still not for some people?! 😉
This is a ‘work in progress’ commitment, as we still face so many challenges –such as, for example, improving our economic conditions which are directly affected by the nature of the cinema industry. We are working hard on our goals with a view to being proud of our work environment by 2020. We´ll let you know how we are doing then!