Driven. Shy. Leader. Wife. Mother. We live in a world of categories—labels designed to tell the world, and ourselves, who we are and who we ought to be. Some labels we may covet, others we may fear or disdain; but creating a life that’s truly your own means learning to define yourself on your own terms.
In Beyond the Label, Maureen Chiquet charts her unlikely path from literature major to global chief executive of Chanel—highlighting her steep learning curve as a marketing trainee at L’Oréal in Paris, her rise through the merchant ranks at The Gap and Old Navy, and her stint as president of Banana Republic. Sharing the inklings, risks, and (re)defining moments that have shaped her exemplary career, Chiquet seeks to inspire a new generation of women, liberal arts grads, and unconventional thinkers to cultivate a way of living and leading that is all their own.
Through vivid storytelling and provocative insights, Chiquet guides readers to consider the pressing questions and inherent paradoxes of creating a successful, fulfilling life in today’s increasingly complex and competitive world.
Why should we separate art from business, feelings from logic, intuition from judgment? Chiquet asks. Who decided you can’t be determined and flexible, introspective and attuned, mother and top executive? And where does it state that standing unflinchingly in your vulnerability and embracing your femininity won’t make you stronger?
Wise, inspiring, and deeply felt, Beyond the Label is for anyone who longs for a life without limits on who she is or who she will become.
Beyond the Label is a revelation. I loved going on Maureen’s journey into her growing personal and professional awareness of feeling trapped in patriarchal structures. She illuminates empathy and emotion on her road to remaking her identity. In a world still dominated by masculine definitions of success, her female gaze disrupts, questions, and reinvents both her identity and that of women everywhere. —Jill Soloway, artist and filmmaker
“Ms. Chiquet [is] something of a cross between Sheryl Sandberg and Elizabeth Gilbert: a life coach/empowerment guru focused on the virtues of defining your own value system professionally, emotionally…” —New York Times
As someone who has worked with Maureen for years, I’ve seen her grow into a confident and effective leader who knows how to mentor young talent, take risks and innovate, and create long-term success. Her book offers a lot of heart, wisdom, and practical advice, and I think it will be a great inspiration to many- and not only women. —Jenny Ming, President and CEO, Charlotte Russe
Thriving at work is an important part of thriving in life-and Maureen Chiquet has done it. Her passion for practicing empathy and embracing self-reflection sets her apart as a leader. Her book provides a practical, optimistic, and deeply human model for creating our own journeys of wonder and wisdom. —Arianna Huffington, founder of The Huffington Post and CEO of Thrive Global
Beyond the Label details, with captivating style, the making of a new breed of female leader. The journey is sometimes bumpy, but Maureen emerges confident, powerful, and armed with the knowledge that there is more than one way to demonstrate competence and self-assurance. Women of all ages, and at all stages of their careers, will be better off for reading this revealing account of how Maureen developed her own leadership style--and how we can too. —Claire Shipman, coauthor of the New York Times bestselling The Confidence Code
Her book is spot-on. To me and to many others she is the ultimate role model-and not just for women. —Mickey Drexler, CEO, J.Crew
Beyond the Label disrupts traditional definitions of what it means to be a leader and what it means to be successful. It bridges the gap between creativity and commerce, between self-expression and pragmatism, and between enduring values and the demands of an ever-changing marketplace. Read this book if you want to be challenged and inspired to find your own pathbreaking way to success. —Jeff Bewkes, CEO, Time Warner
“This entertaining and informative chronicle offers teaching moments for those who want to succeed professionally while still honoring their own uniqueness.” —Publishers Weekly
[Chiquet’s] advice will be especially resonant with a new generation of women inspired and empowered to create their own definitions of success and fulfillment. —Indra Nooyi, chairperson and CEO, PepsiCo