What follows is a social media barrage by the Publicis team with posts shared by their top leadership including Saurabh Varma, Srija Chatterjee, Anupriya Acharya, Amaresh Godbole, Vandana Varma, etc., with the hashtag #AllEqual; each post with a photo of the leader besides a photo of him/her dressed up as a member of the opposite sex.
Here’s the larger picture - Publicis, which has always talked about being committed to building a strong, inclusive and diverse workforce with equal opportunities for all, conducted a gender pay study, led independently by KPMG. It certified them as an equal pay organization. #AllEqual is the statement Publicis Communications India & Publicis Media India wanted to make through what can be called a very novel and creative social media campaign and the images celebrating it have clearly gone viral for all the right reasons.
The campaign is the brainchild of Vikram Pandey, NCD, Leo Burnett and the team brought in professional stylists, designers and make-up artistes to execute it. Eighteen top leaders from the Group, across Leo Burnett, Publicis Media, MSL, L&K Saatchi and Saatchi, Prodigious, etc., decided to put aside their reservations against cross-dressing and agreed to be the models for the campaign. Sources say Rajdeepak Das, though he refused to part with his beard, was the most enthusiastic of them all!
Saurabh Varma, CEO, Publicis Communications India, was one of those leaders who diligently spent over an hour on the make-up. He shared a proud image in both avatars on social media which said, “Saurabh or Sheryl, all are equal for us.”
Talking about it, Varma says, “There is a lot of discussion around equal pay; we wanted to know where we stood. When the report came out, we were extremely happy about this feat. We’ve always believed that actions speak louder than words. And this goes on to prove that we are committed to building a strong inclusive and diverse workforce.”
On seeing the campaign, a Leo Burnett employee reacted, “I was stunned to see our senior leadership team all cross-dressed! Takes some guts, but hey, we’re a creative agency, and we can make even a topic like equal pay be depicted in a fun, cool way! We shouldn’t expect any less.”