Each week, The Drum talks to a range of media and marketing professionals about their roles, but rarely do they get a chance to show who they are and what drives them as people. The Drum's 10 Questions series attempts to offer a little more insight into those personalities. This week's questions are put to Mary Fox, general manager of BIC North America.
What was your first ever job?
I was only 12 years old, and had the idea to start making birthday cakes for friends and neighbors. It was a big hit!
Which industry buzzword annoys you most?
I’m not sure if it’s really a buzzword, but I think the conversation around the concept of “change” bothers me most. So many people are afraid of change – uncomfortable at the very mention of it! But it’s part of our everyday lives, and I feel we should push ourselves to embrace it.
Who do you find most interesting to follow on social media?
I look to social media when I want to dream a little bit and be inspired. Right now I’m especially enamored with New York Times best-selling author and entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk (@garyvee on Instagram and Twitter). He’s great for a daily dose of inspiration (and a chuckle).
What has been the highlight of your career (so far?)
I have pushed myself pretty relentlessly throughout my career to take risks and achieve results, but also to find a larger purpose in my work. With that lens in mind, I’d say my greatest career highlight to-date actually happened fairly recently with the launch of our Made For You razor (sold exclusively on Amazon), which is a celebration of everybody and everybody, of diversity and inclusiveness. It was a product borne of true teamwork and meaningful vision.
What piece of tech can you not live without?
Like millions of others, I absolutely cannot live without my phone. While I try to put some limits on my screen time, it’s endlessly enticing to play around on it personally and professionally – shopping, organizing my day, checking sales, making connections, browsing Instagram and shopping some more!
Who or what did you have posters of on your bedroom wall as a teenager?
I had a poster with this Roald Dahl quote in my room: “Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.” I still believe in that sentiment today.
In advertising, what needs to change soon?
Consumers are smarter than ever before, and they’re expecting more than ever from their chosen brands. It is so important that our campaigns are authentic, inclusive and reflective of what our consumers really want. Most recently, we responded to research that told us 67% of adults aged 18-24 are interested in using genderless personal care products, and developed our Made For YOU razor with no specific gender in mind, but rather focused on the quality of the shave at the very best price for our consumers.
What is (in your opinion) the greatest film/album/book of your life?
Hands down, the film Something’s Gotta Give with Diane Keaton and Jack Nicholson. It never fails to make me laugh and smile.
Which industry event can you not afford to miss each year and why?
Each year, the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) holds an event that brings together the country’s top retailers. It’s a great opportunity to reconnect with many great friends and colleagues as we strategically plan our respective growth for the year to come.
What's the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
Someone once told me that happiness is a choice and everything else in life is just perspective – find the great in everything and enjoy every moment!