Women on Having It All: Beth Bewley
Beth Bewley, Co-Founder of Eufora International, San Diego, California
As a former television producer and owner of a video production and marketing company, Beth Bewley brings a unique perspective to Eufora International, the haircare manufacturing company she launched with her husband Don in 1995. Drawing on her entertainment background, this mother of three started her Eufora career by producing the company’s educational road shows and national platform work. Today, she drives the Eufora’s direction and business strategy and is active in developing its distributor programs, teaching business classes at its Artistic Enhancement Center, launching marketing initiatives and organizing business operations.
Do you believe a woman in the professional beauty industry can “have it all?” And, what does that mean to you?
“To most women, including myself, ‘having it all’ means a successful career, nurturing and raising happy, well-balanced children, managing a household and enjoying a successful, loving relationship with their partner. Women can have it all, but not without a little help from some friends and family. You won’t find the most successful women saying, ‘I have it all and I did it all by myself.’”
In the pursuit of “having it all,” what sacrifices have you had to make, if any?
“I had to sacrifice my long-held belief that “superwoman” was a real concept. When I began my career as a young woman in broadcasting, it became the focus of my life. My career consumed all of my time, energy and passion, and I loved it. When a great man came into my life, I had two passions, and it all worked because he was, and is today, my biggest fan and a great supporter of my career and success. I believed that I could do it all; however, when my children were born a year and a half apart, everything changed. I had to resign myself to the fact that I couldn’t give everyone and everything the time and attention needed without some help. I was fortunate to have a husband who was a great partner in caring for our kids, our home and our relationship.”
If we were looking through a scrapbook of your life, what would be your favorite page?
“One day, about 10 years ago or so, I received a card from my daughter on Mother’s Day. She wrote a letter not just about how she felt about me as a mother, but also how she felt about me as a woman and role model. She talked about how proud she was of me for everything that I accomplished in addition to being a great mom. Needless to say, I cried. As a working mom you wonder if your kids will understand or resent you for having a demanding career. I hope that I’ve been a good example to my kids of how you can balance being a parent and also fulfill your own personal and professional dreams.”
If we were looking through a scrapbook of your life, what page would you want to rewrite?
“Looking back, I’m sure that if I thought about it, there would be many pages to rewrite. I’ve surely made a lot of mistakes along the way, but although this might sound cliché, I would not rewrite one page of the scrapbook. You can always look back on your life and say, “should have, would have, could have.” This, in my opinion is destructive—especially for working women. Good or bad, the pages of the book have led me to where I am and who I am today and I really would not change one moment. The only thing that looking backwards has done for me is make me realize how quickly life moves forward. It helps me realize I need to make the most of and appreciate every precious moment.”
What’s your favorite tool or strategy for maintaining balance in your life? “Time management! I’ve invested my time into courses to learn how to manage my time better, organize, prioritize and delegate. As a mom, wife and business owner there is much more to do in a day than there are hours. You can’t control time, but you can learn how to manage all of the demands on your time so you don’t lose your mind. I’ve learned to pick and choose my battles. Sometimes we can get caught up in the wrong things that drain our energy and time.”
What’s the best advice anyone ever gave you, and how did it change your life? “My father, an immigrant from Ireland, came to the United States with my mother and sisters with almost nothing. He worked very hard and created a great life for our family. He said to me as a young girl, ‘You won’t get anywhere in life without taking risks.’ This has resonated with me since then. Being afraid to push yourself, getting stuck in the status quo, or waiting around for success to find you won’t help you achieve your dreams. You need to take chances and always push yourself out of your comfort zone.”
What wisdom would you share with a young woman entering a career in the professional beauty industry?
“First, do it because it’s your passion. Then, educate yourself with the best education you can afford. Next, find a mentor. This can be someone you admire who has achieved the success you’d like to achieve. Never stop seeking out great education and always keep learning. When you stop learning, you stop growing. This is an industry overflowing with wonderful, creative and caring people. Whether you are passionate about doing great hair, running a successful salon or entering the world of distribution and manufacturing, it’s an industry with unlimited opportunities for anyone who has the passion and desire to grow, learn and care for others.”
What keeps you up at night?
“Not too much anymore. In the early days, everything kept me up at night. In my quest to create balance in my life, I had to learn to switch off the worry button. Sometimes this is easier said than done, but when I look back on the things I was stressed about, I realize that the things that worried me the most were often things I could not control.”
What makes you feel powerful?
“I’d have to say it’s the knowledge I’ve gained over the years and also the wealth of experience I’ve gained that I put to work every day. I’ve been through just about every situation imaginable and the experience and knowledge I’ve gained make me feel powerful enough to handle anything that comes my way. I guess turning 50 has its advantages.”
What’s the best thing anyone’s ever told you about yourself?
“That I am a fair and honest person. There are often very difficult issues and problems that you encounter as a business owner in your dealings with employees, customers and vendors. It’s always been important to me that the people I work with can count on me to be fair and truthful even when I have to make difficult and unpopular decisions.”
What do you hope to achieve in the next five years?
“Eufora is no longer the “new kid on the block” and we’ve lived through our adolescent years. We’ve built a thriving business dedicated to the salon professional in every way. With a solid foundation of loyal distributors, salons and consumers, the next five years will be our greatest achievement years as we continue building our portfolio of prestige products and advanced education offerings for salons. We’ll keep working hard over the next five years to achieve our goal and to become the brand of choice for premier independent salons.”