No one in my family had a retail or marketing background. They were professionals. They didn't understand just what I was doing by going into retailing. After I started, though, it got into my blood. I knew this was what I wanted.
I think the economic empowerment of women that has been growing over the past decade is at the 'inflection point' with this global recession. Women are, we believe, the solution for their families in their ability to go out and increase household income.
Women are clearly the major consumers in far more than just female categories. It doesn't matter whether it is purchases of cars, cosmetics, or even products for men, female consumption power is the leading consumption power in the world. Any company that overlooks the woman as the decision maker is making a huge mistake.
That was very much ahead of its time back in the 1880s and, not surprisingly, it was met with some resistance. [I]f you fast forward to today and the fact that we're the single largest source of employment for women (broadly speaking, as the reps are independent contractors), we've been an important creator of entrepreneurship for women.
The game in beauty is changing so much, if your product isn't high tech or can't make a unique performance claim - plump your lips, reduce your lines, look glossy, and stay on for 24 hours - you can't go to market today. I'm not just talking about a $20 lipstick, but a $5 lipstick!
There are pros and cons of experience. A con is that you can't look at the business with a fresh pair of eyes and as objectively as if you were a new CEO. Fire yourself on a Friday night and come in on Monday morning as if a search firm put you there as a turn-around leader. Can you be objective and make the bold change?
Since I'm a mother and a wife, I have to have passion or the frustration would win out. But I love managing people. The product is second to managing the people. And marketing to consumers is so challenging because it is evolving constantly.