Jessica Friedman

Senior Vice President, Product Development


Why is CEW membership important to you?

I find CEW valuable because it is the only organization of its kind. Beauty is a small and dynamic industry and CEW brings members together by breaking down competitive barriers to unite us around what is important, such as recognizing innovation and achievement, fostering continuous learning and comradery, driving career development and embracing leadership, encouraging charity, and sharing resources. I also love that it is inclusive and welcomes members across all genders and career levels, providing extra encouragement for its junior members in particular.

Do you have any tips for getting the most out of CEW membership?

There are so many resources available for a CEW member. The beauty industry has always been fast-paced and ever-changing, but with COVID-19 it is evolving in a way that we never expected and there is so much more to learn. Lately, I have found the trend presentations and analysis extremely informative and insightful. I also read the CEW newsletters daily, which often lead me to new sources and information. Additionally, their events have always been so engaging and inspiring and really bring the community together.

What do you love most about working in the beauty Industry?

I consider myself lucky to work in an industry and on a brand that I absolutely love. I feel like I truly live the “do what you love” mantra that we hear so often. I love the creative process of making and the development journey, from formula to package – dreaming up new ideas, searching for inspiration around the world, striving to introduce the unexpected and intriguing, creating memory-grade experiences and engaging consumers through artisanal design and craftsmanship.

There is a strong emotional connection in what we do because of the effect that beauty products have on how people feel about themselves.  This provides me with extra incentive to constantly try and evolve my thinking and make each product that much better.

Most of all, I love working with like-minded colleagues. I have found a community of close friends and trusted coworkers in my many years in the industry, for which I am truly grateful.

How important has mentorship been in your career journey?

I believe that mentorship and coaching are what fueled my career growth. Both formal and informal mentorship guided me throughout my career journey, taught me how to mature and evolve, and how to really develop my thinking. Coaching can come from anyone, up or down, inside or outside the organization. I have found that it is so beneficial to open myself up and let down my defenses (which is hard!). When someone questions or critiques my work or ideas, I listen and ask questions to learn more and understand where they are coming from. Then I place those learnings in my toolkit and apply them for the next time. Every opportunity is a learning opportunity.