Women in Business Q&A: Beth Cassiday, Chief Beauty Officer at Paris Presents Inc.

Beth Cassiday is the Chief Beauty Officer and Vice President of Global Innovation at Paris Presents Inc. In this role, she focuses on innovation, new product development and acquisitions and serves as the company's lead beauty expert both internally and externally.

How has your life experience made you the leader you are today?
I have been very fortunate to travel the world and have learned so much from different cultures. This experience has helped shape my leadership style as I encourage our team to be curious and take risks in business.

How did your previous employment experience aide your position at Paris Presents?
I have had wonderful opportunities to grow and learn throughout my career and have had the chance to work with Fortune 500 companies as well as entrepreneurial start-ups. These environments gave me a strong foundation and breadth of experience that I continue to use today to drive our business at Paris Presents. I started my marketing career at Alberto Culver and the experience was very rewarding as I was exposed to sales, marketing and business innovation in the personal care business. I learned about the importance of understanding the consumer and creating brands that are meaningfully differentiated in the marketplace. And, prior to joining Paris Presents, I was with smaller, entrepreneurial companies, which taught me how important it is to compete creatively against bigger players through agility and innovation.

What have the highlights and challenges been during your tenure at Paris Presents?
I am very proud to have led the creation and development of our three flagship brands: EcoTools, Real Techniques and Body Benefits. This was done along with the support and collaboration of an extraordinarily talented team. Through these launches we created unique brands with established personalities - each with a targeted voice and core purpose - that help women feel more beautiful and confident in their beauty routines. Our strong digital efforts to support these brands allow us to be where our consumers are and create a connection to become their trusted advisor. These efforts also allow us to compete with bigger players in the market.

How has technology and social media changed the beauty industry?
In recent years the explosion in digital channels and social media has created a unique opportunity for brands to connect and engage with consumers through one-on-one channels. In this digital landscape we can connect with consumers to create communities and bring together like-minded individuals who are hungry for online tutorials and want to learn how to use products to their fullest. Our goal is to use these social channels to help educate and provide consumers with the tools and resources they need to feel confident and, ultimately, to build lasting relationships. Our focused education efforts - made possible through these social channels - also drive our learning and insights from our customer base, which in turn help to drive new product innovation and category penetration.

How do you maintain a work/life balance?
I love what I do and feel very fortunate to be a part of a business that helps women look and feel their best. To maintain balance, I like to eat well and exercise. This keeps my energy level high. I also enjoy spending time with my family and friends. One of my favorite activities is when my husband and I host a monthly themed "Cook In" for our friends where everyone creates a dish from another part of the world.

What do you think is the biggest issue for women in the workplace?
While this is not specific to women, I think it is important to find something that is exciting to you and gives you joy. It may seem simple, but it's a philosophy with the potential for a lasting, long-term impact.

What are your thoughts on Sheryl Sandberg's Lean In book and movement?
I think she is very inspiring and am delighted that she continues to foster this discussion. Encouraging women to believe in themselves and take risks will also help build smarter companies and stronger businesses. I see it as a win/win for everyone involved.

How has mentorship made a difference in your professional and personal life?
I was very fortunate to have been mentored by a wonderful woman when I first entered the business world. She believed in me and helped open doors so that I could move into marketing. This support was life-changing as it was my first step to the business path I pursued.

Which other female leaders do you admire and why?
Being in the beauty business, you are frequently surrounded by many talented female leaders, such as Bobbi Brown, Nicky Kinnaird and Mary Dillon, who continue to inspire others and prove that they're on top of their game. I love being in this industry because these capable and influential women demonstrate what's possible when you combine strong business acumen with creative and innovative thinking. They also provide powerful role models for the female leaders of tomorrow.

What are your hopes for the future of Paris Presents?
We have a fantastic future ahead of us. Our dedicated team works day in and day out to help women look and feel their best and looking ahead, our goal is to expand our international footprint while continuing to invest in the kinds of research and consumer insights that have established Paris Presents as a category leader.