When Diane Dietz, an accomplished executive who spent 25 years managing global businesses like Procter & Gamble and Safeway, was first approached about a new job opportunity with a skincare company she never heard of, she decided it wouldn't hurt to meet with them, despite having been looking for roles at much larger public companies at the time. But once she sat down with Dr. Katie Rodan and Dr. Kathy Fields, the two founders behind the growing premium skincare brand Rodan & Fields, as well as their chairman, Amnon Rodan, she was immediately captivated with all that they stood for.
"They were really focused on trying to create entrepreneurial opportunities for women and obviously focus on building a great brand that is really rooted in dermatology heritage," says Dietz. "So the more I heard from them and learned about the brand I literally just fell in love with that."
Indeed, 58% of execs at the San Francisco-based company (VPs and C-suite) are women. That number is a striking contrast to the majority of Fortune 500 companies, where Dietz says women are underrepresented in virtually every leadership category. "I just think it's unfortunate because I don't think it should really be about female or male leading. I think diversity is key to winning and it's something I've always believed in," she observes. "Even when I came to Rodan & Fields, I had a team where there was a very high number of women, and I felt it's important to have that balance and men and women on that team. So it is really to me all about creating a diverse organization where you look at multiple levels of diversity, not just gender. The more diverse your team is, you will get to a better conclusion. And I think we will win disproportionately against the non-diverse team."
With a new and diverse team set in place (employees now number around 700), Dietz sought to implement innovative solutions by introducing new products such as the now-popular Lash Boost and Active Hydration Serum, all of which helped boost the company's bottom line.