Abbie Ogutunde

Founder Freya + Bailey

Why is CEW membership important to you?

Community is important and ours is a wonderfully dynamic, warm and highly engaged one. Its been fantastic to make use of the CEW Mentor program, to have also been able to share my own experience as a marketer with others. It’s a real forum for members to share ideas and develop new ways to improve the industry.

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

It’s wonderful when people’s lives are changed by something you have recommended/advised. I myself have been on that journey, looking for hope in a bottle to try and clear my stress acne. I get that it’s personal and profound and it’s incredibly heart-warming to hear customers tell me about the impact fixing their skin has had on their self- confidence. It’s intimate, celebratory and incredibly satisfying.

What are you most excited about for your business in the next twelve months?

Like for many others in 2020, business is not as usual. We have needed to adjust our plans, pivot hard and take steps immediately to better serve the current marketplace. Despite this, we are busy and looking ahead to late 2020 where we will see the launch of a number of additions to our range combined with a bricks and mortar launch with a major retailer. 2021 will see expansion overseas. Growth is important, but it needs to be meaningful and sustainable without compromising our brand values and emphasis on quality and performance.

What are the values that you believe are important in developing a successful (beauty) business?

I think the role of values is key firstly- they need to lay the foundation for everything a brand does from product, marketing, sourcing through to talent acquisition. Your values can transform a group of individuals into a passionate, purposeful team. I wouldn’t want to specify the exact ones as actually, critical aspect of them is authenticity. It’s got to come from a place that is real. Transparency is important however as is integrity and a genuine passion and belief in your products and desire to truly delight and inspire your customer. Business is personal

How can we better support women in the workplace?

As a former VP in a distinctly oestrogen deficient sector- Tech, this is a mission close to my heart. In order to better support women, we not only need to put it at the top of management agenda, we need it to be an intrinsic part of the business strategy. Business and bottom line- it’s got to be something that the CFO cares about in order to redefine the rules. Within organisations community is important. Women, sponsors – or people in positions of authority who use their influence intentionally to help others advance are crucial to ensuring career advancement and professional development. They can offer visibility, push for stretch opportunities and promotions for others with potential.