Every week we’ll be featuring a smart, savvy female entrepreneur we think is just great. These are women who are out there in the trenches each and every day, making things happen and affecting other people’s lives for the better. So pull up a comfy chair, grab a cup of coffee and meet this week’s SheBrand Superstar. We can all learn a golden nugget or two from each other.
Name: Jane Wurwand
Occupation: Founder and Owner, Dermalogica
1. What are three words that best describe your personal brand?
Minimalistic. Pro-woman. Modern.
2. Tell us why you’re awesome in two sentences or less
I’m British, and we never say such things about ourselves. The world’s loyalty to Dermalogica—we are the #1 most-requested professional skin care brand on earth—says it for me.
3. What are your three biggest indulgences?
An ironic choice of words, since my team will tell you that I am not known for my indulgences. My tastes are bit Spartan.
1) I do love a good skull ring, and my skull scarves by Alexander McQueen.
2) I do love antique Victorian and Georgian jewelry, especially Memento mori—mourning jewelry.
And just so you don’t think I’m a sad-sack…
3) I LOVE a good mojito—a big one with lots of mint—preferably consumed in Mexico.
4. What is your biggest pet peeve?
“The dog ate my homework.” Please. People who do not own their own actions. As in, own up, be accountable, be responsible. People who make excuses drive me wild. It’s better to make mistakes than make excuses.
5. If you could have dinner with anyone (living or not) who would it be and why?
I should think the conversation might be a bit more interesting with someone who is still living, versus someone who is not. That’s British humor. In the “still living” category, I might choose to dine with Gloria Steinem, or Johnny Depp—for slightly different reasons. As for people who are in the next realm, I’d love a good chat with Coco Chanel. She defied everything, and became the first modern icon. I’d also love to have dinner with Florence Nightingale. I am in awe of her because she headed off into the Crimean War in her early 20s and basically single-handedly established the nursing profession. Cool chick. And effective!
6. Why is having a powerful personal brand important to you?
In some sense, each of us is our own brand. Our brand identity is who we are as a person and how we express ourselves in terms of personal style. It’s important to me from a business perspective since I am strongly associated with the company I created, Dermalogica. The core values of the company are reflected in my own stripped-down modern, no-nonsense approach to things. Well, okay, I may like a bit of nonsense occasionally.
7. What is your #1 marketing tip for fellow female entrepreneurs?
Do not relax under pressure. And do not aspire to perfect balance—instead, aspire to resiliency, and the ability to recover from loss and disappointment. There will be plenty of both.
Especially here in LA where I live, there is this sort of New Age-y attitude that stress is bad. I’ve got news for you: success does not happen without stress. When the going gets tough, do not take a week off in Sedona or Maui. Unless the company can run smoothly without you, you simply haven’t earned it yet.
Do not take your eyes off the target even for a second when your business is in a critical phase—especially in the first 24 months after launch. This may mean postponing other things. As my incredibly Stoic, though loving, Mum used to say to me when I would push the food around the plate, “Stop whining and eat your sausage.”