Nina DiSesa on fear, facing discrimination and breaking glass ceilings
"I have been discriminated against my whole life."
That might seem like a stunning admission for a woman that rose to become the first female chairman and chief creative officer at powerhouse agency McCann Erickson. But for Nina DiSesa, who earned that post in 1998 and retired from the agency business in 2010, that was just one hurdle she had to overcome on her way to the top. In advance of International Women's Day on March 8, DiSesa spoke with Ad Age about her experiences as a leading woman in advertising and how the business has--and hasn't--changed.
"I was afraid from the moment I woke up," says DiSesa about the responsibility she felt to come up with great creative ideas for the agency and to win and hold on to accounts. (She needn't have feared; during her tenure DiSesa brought in $2.5 billion in new accounts to the New York office.) The key, she says in the below video, is not to show you are afraid.
"It happened to me three times in my life," says DiSesa. "Men put the moves on me who were above me and could affect my career." In the video below, she talks about he she dealt with the situation and why the #MeToo movement is so important today.
Last, DiSesa explains the importance of being a role model to women and how she is proud of making a difference for other women.