Mothers In Advertising 2018, Susana Pérez Bermejo

Interview with Susana Pérez Bermejo

Susana Perez Bermejo
Executive Creative Director Proximity Madrid

Tell us about yourself and what you do in your current position.
I´m the Executive Creative Director at Proximity Madrid and I currently manage a team of 25 people.

I studied Advertising and Public relations at university before the dawn of the internet! Nevertheless, my career has been digitally focused over the last 10 years. I’ve been privileged to see the digital market grow from baby gifs to 360º campaigns. I’ve loved my work even from the beginning even though most people didn’t understand what I really did.

My other passion: My kids. I breastfed one of them while I was on a jury in Cannes, the rest of the jury called him “baby lion”.

Being a mother in fact is a similar vocation to advertising, you nee: devotion, love and creativity; you sleep only a little, think a lot and take care of your creatures, ideas, partners, clients or children…
Describe the culture at your agency; What is it like?
Our creative culture is very simple: Gente buena / Buena gente (no ego) (good energy)

I’ve not translated it because it´s a word play. The meaning behind it is brilliant people but good people too. Happy people that you enjoy work with is the best way to achieve the best results.

It has been a long process creating the right culture, it’s an inside job, inside working out.

Firstly, the people: happy people work better, which as a result means a better product, and ultimately the rewards will come.
How does that culture compliment the juggling act that is being a working mother?
It´s very difficult to be a working mother in advertising, and it’s even harder within the creative department. I´m very lucky because I work reduced hours but even so, I feel like a juggler. I’m not unique though, my husband has the same problem but luckily, we are a couple that takes care of our children in an equal way.
How has being a mother changed how you approach any aspects of your job?
I think I am more effective because I don't care about unimportant things, I put my focus squarely on the most important things. I think I’m also more empathetic, and as a result more capable of enhancing the potential of those around me.
What would you say are the most rewarding aspects of being a working mother?
It’s a tough question. I suppose that being a working mother has made me have a more relaxed attitude towards childrearing because I have additional demands upon me. And because of this my kids don’t bear the brunt of my 100% focused just on them and their decisions.

But naturally I have moments when I miss them hugely and I wish I was able to spend more time with them… It´s complicated and contradictory, but the maternity is like that.
What are the biggest challenges, if any?
Agency jobs are intense. I try take it one day at a time!J I want to be a good mother and a good creative, and sometimes the balance is impossible, but the only thing you can do is try to get the balance right.
What steps do you take to ensure you achieve a healthy work-life balance?
I´m not sure I’ve got it cracked but the most important thing is that I’m trying. The most important thing is spending time with my kids. When I'm in the agency, I'm working, but when I am out of the agency I am with the kids. And for my mental health I go out with my friends once a week.

I have breakfast with my kids every day during the week then we walk to school together. For me, this is the best way to start my day.
What professional achievement are you most proud of?
I'm very proud to be an ECD after becoming a mum. And I'm very proud to be a dynamic team player capable of enhancing the potential of those around me.

This isn't exactly a professional achievement but I'm also proud to be a founder of #masmujerescreativas with other female creatives. It’s a collaborative independent platform born to promote visibility and equal opportunities for female creatives.
What changes do you hope to see for future working parents?
More government initiatives to help balance work life and family life such as special working hours. Laws that protect mums. Advertising jobs are intense and stressful, and it all gets harder when you're a mom. But I believe we contribute to agencies in such an important way.
Who are some working mothers that you admire/look up to?
Clemmie Telford, is a creative director and blogger at

And in Spain, She is a blogger that worked in an advertising agency and speaks about the difficulties of being a mom.
Susana Perez Bermejo
Executive Creative Director Proximity Madrid