Deborah Yeh is the Global Chief Purpose Officer for Sephora. In this newly created global role, Deborah works across all teams to define Sephora’s Purpose and the resulting sustainability and social impact priorities. Since joining Sephora in 2012, she has been instrumental in building Sephora’s reputation with a strong sense of purpose, and she is passionate about bringing Sephora’s values to life in a meaningful and authentic way for all stakeholders.
Recognized for her steadfast and fearless leadership across notable industry awards such as Business Insider’s Most Innovative CMOs and Gold House’s A100 for her work in the Asian American community, Deborah has helped transform Sephora into an inspiring, inclusive and educational beauty destination. In 2019, Deborah led the launch of Sephora America’s award-winning “We Belong to Something Beautiful” brand campaign, and she has demonstrated relentless commitment to actions in favor of greater diversity and equity in beauty, including Sephora’s first-of-its-kind national Racial Bias in Retail Study, which was designed to measure the issue of racially biased experiences in U.S. retail and identify solutions to end unfair treatments.
Prior to joining Sephora, Deborah led marketing strategy and planning for leading brands and retailers, most notably for Old Navy and Target, and she currently sits on the board of L.L. Bean. Deborah attended Harvard University, majoring in Psychology. She currently lives in Paris with her husband, two children and two cats.
In this Episode:
Company purpose & Personal purpose
Organizational and employee wellness
Challenges in the retail industry
Wellness and mental health through a medical lens
Medicalized care and safety and emotional attention
Empathetic and great leadership
Culture of care and belongi
“Our best assets in almost every company are the intellect and passion of our employees.” - Deborah Yeh
“I think if we could nurture these bonds on a more authentic platform, surely enough our companies would truly benefit from it on a macro scale.” - Mollie Jean De Dieu
“Emotional inclusion is such a powerful accelerant to more fulfilling and productive relationships including in the workplace.” - Deborah Yeh
“Inclusion is an action.” - Mollie Jean De Dieu
“Belonging is actually a powerful unlock because that is where you get the feelings. That is where you get the feeling of connectedness. That connectedness is anchored in support and acceptance in psychological safety that comes from belonging.” - Deborah Yeh
“There can be no connection and thus belonging if there is no emotional inclusion or psychological safety.” - Mollie Jean De Dieu
“A full practice has to think about belonging and has to be thinking about emotional inclusion.” - Deborah Yeh
“What you’re challenging us to do is to think about a broader set of forces that we can bring into our practices as leaders. Forces like caring, empathy, support, motivation. All these things are really powerful forms of fuel as a leader to open up and enable others to be successful.” - Deborah Yeh
“When you open up to the world, the world opens up to you.” - Deborah Yeh
“What I think is so powerful about the concept of emotional inclusion is that it reinvigorates the power of the individual to make a difference.” - Deborah Yeh
“We’re all born leaders, paving the way for a better future for all and hopefully a better now for everyone.” - Mollie Jean De Dieu
“I think it's very illuminating and freeing to admit that there is no uncomfortableness in admitting our pain and our humanity in the workplace.” - Mollie Jean De Dieu