Writer, novelist, lecturer, mentor, social commentator, panelist, speaker, advertising guru and broadcaster – Jane Caro has done it all in her career in the media.
A Walkley Award recipient and award winning advertising writer, Caro has established herself as a well-known figure in the industry, appearing in regular slots across TV networks. Previously, she was a senior writer with FCB, Saatchi & Saatchi and The Campaign Palace.
Even better, Caro was a star in B&T’s recent ’15 Over 50′ profiles in our print edition. (Miss it? Subscribe here.)
Well, as luck would have it, we’re re-sharing it here for your delectation.
Here’s Caro’s experiences in her own words:
I didn’t leave but I’ve moved out of mainstream agency life anyway, about 14 years ago. At that time if you were a woman you just couldn’t get ahead. And I was almost 50 then. I knew I was getting older, and I felt impatient. I needed to be able to use my strengths.
For women, it’s a lack of opportunity. I couldn’t get promoted; I had the wrong genitals. I just couldn’t move up. I couldn’t get above senior writer. And I had muscles I wasn’t using. So I needed to use them in a broader context. That’s when I started writing for newspapers, and that led to books, and that led to speaking, which led to making documentaries.
Recently, there has been a break down of a kind of hubris. A kind of swaggery, blokey, “I’m a genius, therefore, I can do, say and behave any way I want to” hubris. I’ve seen that collapse, and that’s been a good thing. We’ve come down to earth, we’ve stopped thinking that we’re God’s gift and realised we’re just the makers of ads and therefore it’s become all inclusive.
What excites you about the industry now?
All the same things that always did! The ability to get to the heart of something fast, to be transgressive and subversive and get paid for it. I think one of the great things about great ads is that they ask us if there’s something about them that challenges pomposity, and the bland, soothing tones of the corporation it gives it a human face.
What makes you happy?
I think it’s connecting with other people, that makes me happy. And I think great ads do that. I think great books do that, great articles do that… all forms of communication.