As with all things, it’s good to let the dust settle, take a breath, and then react calmly – rather than jumping to conclusions and getting too angry too quickly. So today I’m addressing this, from a place of thought rather than impulsivity.
At such a young age, Molly Mae Hague she has risen to a position of online celebrity within the UK, and power within the fashion company, Pretty Little Thing. It’s surprising that she appears to receive no teaching/training on public speaking given the amount of money she’s paid to represent an entire company… and yet, here we are. Her recent comments sparked criticism, and her excuse of an apology wasn’t great either. Her entire attitude simply shone a light on her wealth, privilege, and lack of empathy and understanding.
“When I’ve spoken about that in the past I have been slammed a little bit, with people saying ‘it’s easy for you to say that because you’ve not grown up in poverty, so for you to sit there and say we all have the same 24 hours in a day is not correct.’ But, technically, what I’m saying is correct. We do.” – Molly Mae Hague
There are two things to consider here – she said something stupid without considering the perspectives of many other people (including the garment workers at PLT who have often reported earning less than minimum wage) but also 22yo us probably also said idiotic comments we immediately wanted to grab out of the air. Or maybe it took us a decade of learning to grow and become better. It has to be hard to grow and learn so publicly… though her apology feels like she doesn’t think she did anything wrong. Eeek.
And then there’s also the fact that PLT should probably help their Creative Director with some public speaking coaching and opportunities to learn, as part of her role, rather than having her be a glorified face of the company, who publicly says whatever pops into her head without thought for the consequences and effect her words have.
Feels like Luvvie Ajayi Jones is a time traveller as she addressed this in her book, Professional Troublemaker, The Fear-Fighter Manual, in advance of all of this drama. Her example being, sure – Beyoncé has 24hours in the day, but she might have a team of ten people doing things for her on her behalf and taking things off of her plate, meaning she actually has 240 hours.
The narrative that you can get whatever you want if you just work every hour of the day and want it hard enough, may have begun as a motivational pep talk, but has transformed into something much more toxic – much like ‘girlboss’ and ‘hustle culture’. When we talk this way, we’re assuming that everyone is starting at the same place, and has the same privileges. Obviously this isn’t true. The single mother working two jobs does have a 24hour day, but perhaps has no free time to pursue a passion or goal. Hustling any harder wouldn’t help her. She doesn’t have the funds to become a ‘girlboss’ and start her own company.
It just sounds as though Molly Mae (and probably everyone at PLT) needs to do The Privilege Walk and some other learnings to make some changes – both personal and professional.
‘We all have the same 24 hours,’ says Molly-Mae Hague, influencer and creative director of Pretty Little Thing, who makes £275ph.
According to a 2020 Sunday Times investigation, Leicester garment workers making clothes for Boohoo—PLT’s parent company—earn as little as £3.50ph. pic.twitter.com/aik2xvIOXz
— Novara Media (@novaramedia) January 6, 2022