When he graduated from college, Rodney Williams was determined to make the world a better place. Running a company owned by a social service agency that hired disadvantaged workers not only allowed him to contribute to his community, but also inspired his love of branding. Following his MBA, Rodney gained experience marketing a variety of consumer brands before joining the LVMH group in 2011 as SVP Marketing Hennessy Cognac for the US. After becoming Moët Hennessy’s CMO, he is now President and CEO of Belvedere Vodka.
What do you wish that people knew about working at LVMH?
As the world leader in luxury, LVMH comprises 70 fascinating brands from sectors as diverse as wine & spirits, fashion and beauty. This offers tremendous career opportunities within the Group. Our approach to brand building is eclectic and goes beyond the usual perceptions people have of “luxury”: our brands and their customer messaging are informed by what’s emerging in our culture. We strive to create a sense of optimism.
What excites you about the future of the company?
LVMH has very strong values of creativity, entrepreneurship and excellence that make the future very exciting. Our wines & spirits portfolio history really encourages us to think for the long term. The Belvedere Distillery has been crafting vodka for 117 years and Hennessy is 252 years old. Unlike many companies with legacies like this, we don’t want to keep doing things as they’ve always been done. There’s a real value to entrepreneurial thinking, showing courage, and taking risks to drive the business forward.
What advice do you have for graduates who are interested in pursuing a career at LVMH?
People graduating today are digital natives. Honing those digital skills allows them to come to the market with very valuable talents and insights. They should also immerse themselves in the culture around them, from being aware of trending artists to reading a lot, listening to different genres of music, or trying different types of cuisines. That will give them a greater worldview to connect with our ever more diverse customers.
The LVMH group brings together 70 exceptional Houses across fashion and leather goods, wines and spirits, perfumes and cosmetics, watches and jewelry and selective retailing, which create products that convey savoir-faire, tradition and heritage while remaining firmly anchored in modernity. Our brands include Louis Vuitton, Céline, Marc Jacobs, Moët & Chandon, Veuve Clicquot, Hennessy, Dior, Guerlain, Benefit, Bvlgari, TAG Heuer, Chaumet and Sephora among many others.
Our employees: The talent of our employees is an essential competitive asset that underpins the success of our Houses. LVMH spans an amazing diversity of businesses, professions and brands with a presence around the world. This allows us to provide a variety of career paths for every member of the Group.
What makes us unique: Joining LVMH means becoming part of an academy of talents and contributing, together, to the Future of Tradition.