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Sephora and Zoetis Recognized by Catalyst for Improving Gender Representation and Advancing Women


NEW YORKJan. 18, 2024 /7Newswire — Sephora and Zoetis have demonstrated the value of diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts to create workplaces that work for women – and for everyone – and will be honored with the 2024 Catalyst Award for their efforts and results. These companies’ initiatives have engaged employees at all levels, resulting in increased representation of women, including women of color, across their organizations. The companies will be honored by Catalyst, a global nonprofit promoting gender equity and workplace inclusion, at the Catalyst Awards Conference & Dinner on 12 March 2024.

Since 1987, the Catalyst Award has recognized 110 initiatives at 98 organizations from around the world. Catalyst Award Winners lead a community of forward-thinking organizations that are developing new and innovative ways to advance talent and strengthen their organizations through gender equity.

“Leading on gender equity has become core to what it means to be an impactful company and workplace,” said Lorraine Hariton, President & CEO of Catalyst. “These Catalyst Award-winning initiatives are not only normalizing gender equity and advancing women as imperatives in the workplace but are getting meaningful results. Sephora and Zoetis have shown us the positive impact for employees, for business, and for communities when workplaces are respectful and rewarding for women and for everyone.”

The 2024 Catalyst Awards Conference & Dinner—the premier gender equity conference and awards event—will take place in person at the New York Hilton Midtown in New York City and online. This year’s theme, the Catalyst Effect, celebrates the collective impact of individuals committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion—who together can create massive change.

Ticket packages and individual tickets are on sale now for both the Conference and Dinner events.

Hundreds of executives from top global corporations, professional firms, governments, nonprofits and nongovernmental organizations, and educational institutions are expected to attend the 2024 Catalyst Awards Conference, as well as the Dinner chaired by KPMG. Target is the 2024 Presenting Sponsor. Accenture is a Platinum Sponsor, Chevron and Pfizer are Gold Sponsors, and Dow is a Silver Sponsor.

Sephora and Zoetis will receive the Catalyst Award for:

DE&I Heart Journey

After Sephora debuted its 2019 manifesto, “We Belong to Something Beautiful,” the company launched its first comprehensive DE&I strategy, Sephora DE&I Heart Journey, in 2020. This work focuses on three pillars: the company’s employees, its consumers, and the communities it serves. It develops both employees and future employees through scholarships, training, and mentorship programs; builds DE&I goals into performance indicators; and prioritizes its offerings from brands owned by Black people, Indigenous people, and other people of color.

Sephora’s DE&I team, a part of the HR business area, leads the direction of the initiative. George-Axelle Broussillon Matschinga, VP, Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion, heads the team and works directly with Sephora leadership to align and inform their ongoing strategies. Eleven DE&I Task Forces execute the strategy, each of which supports one aspect of the initiative. Sephora’s ERGs, called INCommunities, provide feedback to leadership and across the organization to share ideas and spur new initiatives.

Highlights of Sephora’s initiative:

  • Sephora Scholarship, an annual six-month-long program launched in 2021, provides participants from underrepresented races and ethnicities with tuition for cosmetology and esthetician school, a paid internship at Sephora, firsthand industry experience, mentorship, and access to open roles following graduation. To date, 217 scholars (75% people of color) have participated in the program.

  • All Abilities Hiring is a nine-week structured training program within distribution centers that includes five days in the classroom and eight weeks on the job. After the training, graduates receive an offer to join Sephora. As a result of the program, the company hired 317 participants with disabilities. The program’s goal is to expand so that 30% of all distribution center employees are people with disabilities, up from 10% to date.

  • Sephora Talent Incubator Program is a six-month development program focused on underrepresented talent with three areas of focus: 1) group coaching; 2) mentorship by leaders based on competencies; and 3) culturally oriented individual coaching. Since the program’s launch in 2021, 200 mentees and 110 mentors have participated and 50% of the mentees were promoted to next-level roles.

  • The Accelerate program is Sephora’s long-standing brand incubator program, which shifted priorities to focus exclusively on Black, Indigenous, and other people of color beauty founders in 2021.

  • DE&I accountability is built into Key Performance Indicators. Every employee at Sephora, from the C-Suite to the frontline, is held accountable to four goals per year. One of these goals must be a DE&I-related goal.

Since the launch of the initiative, the representation of women of color has increased across every band at the organization:

  • Band 1 (VPs and above): from 20% to 33% (13 percentage points)
  • Band 2 (Manager and Director): from 30% to 39% (9 percentage points)
  • Band 3 (Individual Contributors): from 53% to 60% (7 percentage points)

These gains were most pronounced for Latine and Black women via increased hires and promotions.

“Sephora is humbled and honored to accept the 2024 Catalyst Award,” said Artemis Patrick, President of Sephora North America. “Diversity, equity, and inclusion have been core to Sephora’s brand ethos and when we started our DE&I Heart Journey, we knew change wasn’t going to happen overnight, but we are committed to celebrating and inspiring our diverse community and making Sephora a representative beauty destination for all.”

Awareness & Action Drive Impact: The Zoetis Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Journey

Zoetis launched its Awareness & Action Drive Impact initiative in January 2020, when Kristin Peck became CEO. During her first month as chief executive, she worked to position diversity, equity, and inclusion as one of five strategic priorities for the organization. To support this positioning, Zoetis created the role of Chief Talent, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (TDE&I) Officer as well as a team dedicated to TDE&I, which has expanded from an initial staff of three to thirteen. The TDE&I Center of Excellence, whose entire purpose is talent and DEI, is the primary entity providing oversight.

Zoetis’ senior leadership team has driven and modeled this initiative from the top. In addition, the company created systems that institutionalize diversity, equity, and inclusion in business processes, embedding it in every corner of the business and ensuring that it is powered by colleagues at all levels. Diversity, equity, and inclusion progress is given the same weight as other business objectives, and a focus on equity is built into expectations around leadership skills.

Highlights of Zoetis’ initiative include:

  • Global culture, regional customization: Zoetis’ core values serve as guiding principles for fostering a sense of belonging and taking new opportunities across the globe. At the same time, the company makes specific efforts to address the unique needs of different regions.

  • Frontline employee inclusion: Women are found everywhere across Zoetis’ two primary frontline functions of manufacturing and sales, including in key leadership roles. Career ladders and paths are available to all frontline colleagues. Everyone has access to an individualized development plan, support, and an understanding of how to advance, as well as opportunities to work on different projects or roles.

  • Colleague Resource Groups (CRGs) play a tremendous role in helping leadership understand the obstacles that different groups face; promoting allyship; generating ideas for solutions, sharing them with executive sponsors, and executing on them; and much more.

  • Talent processes, both external-facing and internal-facing, have a powerful impact on representation and inclusion at Zoetis. External-facing processes share what it’s like to work in animal health and increase the pool of underrepresented talent. Internal-facing processes include strong, intentional succession planning that regularly plans for two–three roles ahead and provides access to sponsors, mentors, and leadership growth opportunities.

As a result of the initiative, women’s global representation from 2020–2023 increased at the target level of Band 1 from 47% to 50% (3 percentage points), and in Band 2 from 44% to 49% (5 percentage points). On the Board of Directors, women’s overall representation increased from 36% to 42% (6 percentage points), and the representation of women from marginalized racial and ethnic groups increased from 9% to 17% (8 percentage points).

“At Zoetis, our belief that colleagues make the difference guides our diversity, equity, and inclusion journey to ensure that inclusion, awareness, and action across our global community are at the heart of our business,” said Kristin Peck, Chief Executive Officer of Zoetis. “By focusing on education, talent programs, and partnerships, we have raised the representation of women from the C-suite to the shop floor—and we will keep building a welcoming workplace and animal health industry where our colleagues, and those who care for animals, can thrive.”

Registration is now open for the event on 12 March.

About Catalyst
Catalyst is a global nonprofit supported by many of the world’s most powerful CEOs and leading companies to help build workplaces that work for women. Founded in 1962, Catalyst drives change with preeminent thought leadership, actionable solutions, and a galvanized community of multinational corporations to accelerate and advance women into leadership—because progress for women is progress for everyone.