OWNED is a global coalition of women-owned creator companies operating in the advertising production industry working together to help women thrive. We are an initiative of global inclusion, supporting, championing and mentoring women in commercial production. A platform where owners can come together to support, share, collaborate and promote each other, leading the way for the next generation of women owners.
We want a body of WOMEN who OWN a piece of this world to join our initiative.
In this interview series, we showcase companies in our coalition.
As they celebrate 10 years this January, we felt spotlighting The Producers was a fitting start – another marvellous way to bring in 2023! We applaud their decade's worth of hard slog and all heart building a business that’s expanded into three cities Down Under, an alliance with another Owned member, Honor Society in the US, and a growing director roster.
Formidable women coming together = formidable force. It’s near impossible to overstate its value. With women investing in women, everyone wins – and The Producers amply demonstrate this. They convey a genuine warmth and as a team collectively operate with the ethos of nurturing a respectful and supportive environment, important to them and their family. We love how they think and operate!
“It has been important for our directors not to have internal conflict with one another and a producer-led company made sense to us.”
Initially Tanya Spencer and Noelle Jones were at competitive production companies, and would meet over monthly long lunches. The comradery experienced was newfound and valuable, a time where they could ‘download and seek advice from one another’. The idea soon hatched to launch out on their own. Victoria Conners was at that time head of TV at McCann Worldwide though keen to return to production. So at lunch (yes, they like to eat!) they asked her to join.
LBB> As a creator company in our industry, what is the value of a female-owned perspective?
Victoria> The clear economic value is that women drive up to 85% of purchasing decisions and having that perspective as part of the DNA of your creative production gives you an enormous head start. Also female business owners bring a new kind of innovation – one based on collaboration, empathy and a drive to do the right thing for their employees as well as their customers. A different kind of authenticity.
Part of OWNED's role is to shape a more equitable and balanced industry, how would you like to see this happening?
Victoria> Two common limiting factors for women owning their own businesses are confidence and networking. I would love to see real opportunities to focus on those areas. Workshops, mentorships and courses that give them not just the skills but the confidence and the network to start their own businesses.
Are there learnings from your own journey that have bettered your leadership?
Noelle> It was very much a ‘sink or swim’ attitude when I first started, thankfully I was resilient and survived and thrived. At first I adapted similar methods, however over the years I learnt that you don’t get the best results through stress and fear and you can lose some valuable people in your team so I changed.
I believe patience is my most valuable attribute as a leader and the ability to listen to my team. Our full-time staff are small in number but they amaze me every day. I continue to learn from them as much as they learn from me.
What obstacles have you experienced that inhibit your company's opportunities and visibility in the industry?
Noelle> The ‘old boys club’ still has a presence in advertising. It’s slowly changing but we hustle every day for our place at the table. Often these past relationships will affect business decisions, for better or worse. Our team will continue to work hard to develop new business relationships and we pride ourselves on producing good work. I feel optimistic for the future and women in business.
Do you have any landmark moments as a female business owner that you'd like to share?
Noelle> We are excited to be celebrating 10 years of The Producers in January 2023. I’m blessed to be able to work with such amazing talented business partners: Tanya Spencer and Victoria Conners. Our fearless attitude to business and the steadfast support for one another, we know we can take on any challenge with confidence.
We are also thrilled to have executive producer Aborah Buick join the family. Aborah is leading our Sydney team and doing an amazing job. In many ways I feel like we are just getting started so ‘watch this space!’
What has your professional journey been like?
Noelle> To be honest it doesn't feel like 10 years. I'm not saying it's been a walk in the park but with two amazing business partners the journey has been equal parts challenging and rewarding. I'm very lucky.
Aborah> Pretty blessed I'd say. Throughout my career I've been lucky enough to work with some truly talented people and that's certainly helped me grow into a better producer. I'm lucky enough at The Producers to again be surrounded by a group of brilliant women I'm learning from once more.
What inspires you?
Aborah> Enthusiasm. Passion.
Caring about something is the first step to doing great work.
What advice do you wish you were given earlier?
Aborah> Slow down. When I was younger I'd sometimes get ruffled when things didn't happen fast enough.
Confidence is slow. It's going to happen, take a breath, slow down, do the process. Have faith.
OWNED by Women. Run by Women.