Covid, done. Brexit, done. Cost of living crisis, ongoing. General election, Pending. Women funny? YES! Can we change the world? Hell, YES!


Women’s conversations cover many topics as well as the minutia of everyday life. We often bear the brunt of managing household finances and purchases and yet, while advertising influences what we buy, the picture is largely being painted and guided by men. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want a man telling me which incontinence pads to buy!


And we’re as funny as f**k while we’re juggling careers, babies, menopause and loss. We use humour big time when it comes to communications, forming friendships and creating social groups. We sing, knit, exercise, dance, care for kids and the elderly, and all of that puts a smile on our faces.


Remember that old sexist trope about making a woman laugh and she’s putty in your hands? Forget the dating game, we make you laugh to get what we want! Take this on board when it comes to selling stuff and let us write our own narrative.


In advertising, humour is proven to drive sales so why is it still such a boy’s club when it comes to humour? Men are conditioned to always want the last laugh, but do they really know what women find funny? This is why I created Funny Women in the first place all those years ago.


Back at the end of the last century, I was employed as a publicist for a new comedy club in London and I was shocked by the lack of female acts. I felt compelled to improve the gender balance after the male comedy promoter I was working for told me that he never booked any women because ‘they aren’t funny’ and ‘there are no funny women’. 


I’ve since had the last laugh as now thousands of extremely funny women have been through our Awards, workshops and courses over the last 20 years.


Fast forward to 2018 when I saw parallels in the way female creatives were being side-lined in the creative industries and Funny Women launched its HERlarious initiative in response.  Today we represent a community of brilliant performers, writers and creators who can direct, animate and depict the world as it really is – 50% female – so why not more female creative direction?


Women are changing the advertising industry by taking the lead in depicting a more open, diverse and caring society and using their creative influence.  It’s not so subtle either.


For example, we are seeing more feminine references in mainstream advertising, including graphic depictions of vaginas, to open narratives about periods, menopause and incontinence. How is this changing the landscape?  As women are we freer than ever to talk about our bodies and minds?  And is this contributing to more acceptance of our creative worth?


While I’m waving my diversity banner, let me shout out for those of us over 60 still making a valuable contribution – don’t airbrush us out of the picture because we’re no longer menstruating. Brands can benefit from the post-menopausal energy we generate making us more creative and reliable. Throw in a bit of old school analogue people skills and client management and you’ve got the perfect mix.


Women are true 'agents for change' and it took a lot of bra burning to free us from the kitchen sink, so give us the opportunity, whatever our age, to be part of the creative process and write our own jokes!


Find out more about Funny Women's awards and how to change the narrative of women in the workplace through humour.