The calibre of Cannes Lions attendees is mind-blowing. You might find yourself queuing for the toilets with the CMO of a global mega-brand or stuffing your face full of free canapés next to a world-renowned ECD. There too many exclusive guest lists to count and you end up with more VIP wristbands than a teenager during festival season. On first look, it’s all incredibly intimidating and when I first found out I had won a free pass thanks to the GoDaddy Scholarship for Women in Tech, I must admit I was apprehensive.
But after a week of meeting amazing people over a glass or five of rosé – I realised I had more in common with Cannes attendees than I first thought. Like me, the people who attend Cannes Lions are ambitious and passionate about the industry. Like me, they are people eager to discuss how we can improve what we’re doing and how we can make advertising more positive and impactful. And actually people who attend Cannes also tend to be incredibly humble; they want to learn from their peers and draw inspiration from the amazing work of others.
So I think the main thing that this week has taught me is that senior, influential people within the adverting industry are also just people. I learned to appreciate and enjoy what their experience has to offer and to find opportunity in what I can learn from them - rather than simply being intimidated. Because at the end of the day - whether you’re a ten-month-old startup like Good-Loop or a ten-years-young industry veteran - we’re all united by a shared belief that advertising is important and we all have a responsibility to make it a positive force in the world.