Conviction Not Emotion: Sibling Rivalry's Maggie Meade

Be honest, be kind, be strong and don’t apologize for any of it.

Maggie Meade
Co-Founder/Partner Sibling Rivalry

How would you describe the overall culture at your agency and would you say that there is a separate female culture?

No, talent is talent and I don’t believe there is a separate female culture at Sibling.


In your opinion, what do you see as being the biggest change in the advertising industry since women have begun to break the “glass ceiling”?

To not sound like we as women are complaining. Women get a bad reputation of calling out injustices in companies, and we shouldn’t be apologetic about continuing to call it out. It’s a fine line to walk about who is the best qualified for a position while also checking a quota of women in these positions. Also, a lot of the communications about women breaking glass ceilings is to other women, but unless you have men in these conversations, things won’t move upward.


What are some of the challenges that women still face in the industry?

I think it is still harder for women to get the high management/partner positions. There are definitely more women in the industry, but I am not sure if they are comfortable asking for the higher level roles, or they aren’t considered first. But I do believe this will change.


What steps do you take to ensure you achieve a healthy work-life balance?

In production, this is the hardest part of your life. First off, you have to love your career and not see it as a job so you want to work everyday. Second, work with people that respect you, push you and tell you when you need to take some time off. And third, have a life outside of your career: whether that be kids, friends, sports. Everyone needs a balance to focus on something that is not work-related. It’s good for your soul, creativity and state of mind/stress.


What professional achievement are you most proud of?

Opening Sibling Rivalry. I know that sounds like the answer I am supposed to say, but it’s true. Opening a company with essentially two strangers, and making that a successful, creating a nice place to work, with partners that now have become great friends is a hard thing to do. Starting a business seems easy from the outside, but it is 24/7 to be involved in all aspects and people of the company and still want to push and make it better.


Tell us about a mentor that helped guide you in your career. What made them so Special?

Ironically, all my male bosses. I contacted all of them and asked them to hire me and why I was an asset to their agency/company. All of them treated me with respect and with my self-assuredness, they promoted me and had me run departments. I never felt that they treated me more ‘female’ at any level, they treated me like a ‘person’ that they trusted.


How do you as a successful woman plan to inspire the next generation of women?

Be honest, be kind, be strong and don’t apologize for any of it. And if you need to cry, take a walk around the block and have that cry then come back and speak with conviction and not emotion.