In January 2015, at only 36 years old, Daniel Bethelmy-Rada was named Global Brand President in the L’Oréal Professional Products Division – one of the youngest DMI General Manager ever appointed in the company. At the time, Bethelmy-Rada’s tenure with the global brand had already spanned 15 years with L’Oréal Paris and Garnier, accumulating company-wide praise and international accolades in the industry as a marketing and digital brand strategist.
Bethelmy-Rada’s unique background and upbringing around the world have shaped the way he looks at the beauty industry. His passion and ability to build successful teams, and embrace diverse talents, has been continuously recognized throughout his time in the L’Oréal Professional Products Division. A strong advocate of continued education, diversity, and philanthropy within the workplace, Daniel Bethelmy-Rada has spent his career unapologetically determined to make a difference – both as a mentor and colleague inside L’Oréal, and as a champion for the betterment of others around the world that can be supported by the power of L’Oréal’s charitable causes.
Tell us a bit about your career?
After finishing my MBA from ESSEC Business School in Paris in 2002, I started my career with L’Oréal when I was hired to oversee creative projects for the brand; and within my first year was promoted to Product Manager for L’Oréal’s cosmetics distribution company LaScad. In 2005, I became Director for Garnier International, leading a product development team. Here, my team focused on products in development under the Fructis line, from conception to research and development, all the way through to packaging and marketing. Throughout my tenure with the Garnier brand, we developed dozens of beauty products that spanned hair and skin care and won several industry awards. In 2011, I was named VP of Global Marketing with L’Oréal Paris and tasked with directing a three-year innovation and expansion plan. I led the brand strategy for the world’s top hair care and styling brands: L’Oréal’s Elseve/Elvive, Hair Expertise, StudioLine, and Elnett. I moved to Deputy General Manager for Garnier International in the L’Oréal Consumer Products Division in 2014, and the scope of my projects drastically changed as I led creative teams throughout the U.S., South America, Eastern Europe, and Asia. My experience in creative projects and leadership culminated in the foundation of my current position – Global Brand President representing Matrix and Biolage through the L’Oréal Professional Products Division – which led me to NYC in 2015 as one of the youngest Brand Presidents appointed in this division.
What are some of the important factors that led you to where you are today?
Growing up around the world taught me so much at a young age that I couldn’t learn in a school book. I was born in Venezuela, lived in the United States for ten years, then moved to Paris when I was 16 through the AFS-USA study-abroad program. Intercultural learning meant new opportunities every day and opened my eyes to a whole world of beauty and creativity and inspiration that doesn’t fit into one box. Moving internationally also opened my eyes to the necessities and possible career paths through international relations, and my collegiate studies focused on these tenets as my upbringing and professional life collided.
I stayed in France to study International Business at Sorbonne University in Paris. A lifetime moving around the world, a real curiosity in business studies, and the desire to creatively explore carved a niche for me in the industry. I found my experiences to be ideally suited for building marketing initiatives and growing a worldwide presence for an international brand.
What are a few of your passions?
I started practicing photography around the world, and I learned to challenge myself creatively and to solve puzzles using photography as a medium – this will always be one of my greatest passions. In the workplace, I communicate well when I can put my ideas into photography and give life to abstract concepts.
What are your keys to staying productive?
My most successful days are when I’m on a tight schedule. By prioritizing my most important responsibilities every single day, and keeping a strict schedule for each task, I’m never left wondering if I missed something or if there is something better I could be doing. I carry these tenets over into my personal life as well! My work-life balance is always the calmest and most enjoyable when we have a set plan and stick to it – my husband would say I’m an overly Type-A personality, but we can agree that the time for our family is to be cherished. Another important key to productivity (at work and home) is communication – making sure that everyone is on the same page from the start of a project can save loads of time down the road.
What are your short-term and long-term goals?
Short term: To complete and launch new products, lead the industry in 2020, and to keep transforming our brands while focusing on how we go to market – mainly through focusing on digital and being highly connected to the humans in our industry.
Long term: To push limits, lead my colleagues in being more forward-thinking, and to define goals for the legacy of the brand versus individual products and projects.
What’s the most valuable lesson you’ve learned during your career?
Take advantage of unique opportunities. Whether it’s filling a gap by creating a new position, or taking advantage of unique offerings through your company, do it. Say yes. Be the person in the room who people go to for ideas and answers and use your platform to help others. I’ve had the privilege of being involved in programs like OUT at L’Oréal, which celebrates inclusivity and the LBGTQ+ community. I’ve also been honored to participate in the L’Oréal Seminar, speaking on diversity and inclusion at the Harvard Kennedy School; and had the opportunity to work with the International Rescue Committee in refugee missions that expand entrepreneurial education and opportunities in the beauty industry for refugees around the world. I’m really lucky to be where I am, and it’s been a joy to share this mission around the world.
What advice would you give to others aspiring to succeed in your field?
In the same vein, I would encourage young professionals to stand out with ideas! Don’t be afraid to speak up when you have a novel solution to an old problem. Set goals and hold yourself accountable, benchmarking along the way and rewarding yourself as you go. And always walk the walk. Do what you say. Say what you do.
What are your favorite activities to do outside of work?
When I’m not working, I love spending time with my family! My husband Nicolas and I married in 2005, and we have two adopted children. We are so lucky to get to travel and learn together, and it’s absolutely the thing I most look forward to every single day outside of work.