Maria Salcedo

SVP, Merchandising Cosmetics

Ulta Beauty

Why is CEW membership important to you?

My CEW membership is extremely important because it allows me to connect, and thus grow, with leaders in beauty while fueling the advancement of women and furthering diversity in the industry.

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

I find that taking advantage of the events (webinars, conferences, speaker series, etc.) is a great way to learn and stay up to speed on the latest trends and advancements in the industry. I recommend planning out your attendance to these based on your business and personal priorities. I also recommend supporting and attending the awards ceremonies as these have become a meaningful source of inspiration and motivation.

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

The beauty industry is dynamic and fascinating and there are many aspects of it that make it unique and exciting. For one, it is a “feel good” industry. Collectively, we manufacture, market, and sell products that make consumers feel good. In addition, it is an industry that employees many, many women and one in which glass ceiling are being shattered and hopefully we will continue shattering more. Finally, beauty is deeply connected to consumer trends, pop culture, fashion, science and technology. It is at the heart of consumer routines and rituals and ranges from self-expression to wellness.

Do you have any career regrets or something you wish you would have done differently? If so, what and how did you learn from it?

Not so much as a regret but definitely a learning. My career path is not linear, and I have sought out varied experiences that will challenge me and help me expand my knowledge base and toolkit. Within that, I have made moves to different functions. On a specific occasion I accepted a lateral move to a different function in a newly created role and with the task of building a team. In hindsight, I would recommend that when exploring a move into a new function, you do so into an established role and team. Trying to learn about a new area of the business while defining a new role and building a team did not set me up for quick success and hindered my development to some extent.