I have found the Leslie Knope of Advertising. If you don’t know what that means, allow me to explain. She is exhaustingly passionate about her career but has not given up family for it. She finds fun in the problems and is always exploring new ways of telling the same story. She is spunky and wildly articulate. Her intelligence is not shadowed by her charm and vice-versa. She is outspoken and ambitious with a radiating energy that is ridiculously endearing. She is effortlessly warm and endlessly cool. She is the VP Creative Director at Barkley and her name is Katy Hornaday.
In case you can’t tell, I was pretty impressed with our #CircusForum today. Not only was Hornaday authentic and engaging, with a killer book, but she spoke about real industry issues that I know we are all thinking about. From “How can I make something cool with just a billboard?” (hint: get developers down to their skivvies.) to being a mom and a CD. “The truth is,” Hornaday smiles, “Being a creative makes me a better mom (thinking up the most awesome craft projects that no other parents are thinking of), and being a mom makes me a better creative (more empathetic, better at time management).”
At the circus, we are schooled every day in looking at the same problem differently and exercising our creative muscles. What we don’t talk about, is how to have a family, and still make a name for ourselves. How can we, as passionate people who will undoubtedly be working around the clock because we will never be satisfied, still find time for dating, let alone a marriage and a kid?
Keeping the work life balance, well, balanced, takes planning and focus, but when you have the right people in your life, it’s not hard. Hornaday says she and her husband have weekly date-nights (adorable), and as far as her daughter goes, it’s like this: “I always put my family first. Sometimes that means going to the big meeting so I can show my daughter what it means to be a strong woman (badass CD), and sometimes that means not going because her gymnastics meet is more important (badass mom).”
What did I tell you? The Leslie Knope of Advertising.
And now, something that Katy was more than happy to do, #selfie: