From Law To HR — How Jaime Changed Career And Landed His Dream Job
For a year, Jaime wondered if he had chosen the right career. Whilst he enjoyed his work in law he got that weird tingle in his stomach making him feel that he might be on the wrong path. 12 years later, Jaime is now leading HR in the Middle East at L’Oréal. So how did he get from reluctant lawyer to enthusiastic HR Director in the beauty industry? He credits much of his success to one choice: surrounding himself with people who are pumped by the pace and energy of such a dynamic industry.
Learn more about Jaime, HR Director Middle East, who left law behind and realized that “You can do (almost) anything with a law degree.”
Give us one fun, crazy fact about yourself.
I am as a matter of fact a bit crazy… Haha! Crazy maybe because I love to live life, to have fun and enjoy every moment to the fullest. I love to sing and listen to music - in the shower, in the car, at the office. No matter where. I love to make other people happy! It fulfills me!
What’s your passion project outside of work?
There are so many! The list goes on and on, but let’s start with.. fashion. I love what fashion transmits — the notion of beauty, attitude, and liberty. Art is the same. Music is not only a passion for me; it’s in my blood, the beat is inside me, but don’t ask me to play any instrument! Oh, and not to forget travelling — discovering new places, meeting new people, experiencing new food!
Being curious is a huge part of me. For the last 7 years I have 3 new passions called Carlota, Javier and Gonzalo. These guys keep me active 24/7 making me enjoy life 200%.
Tell us more about your background?
I have a law degree and worked as a lawyer for some time. However, my heart just wasn’t in it. So, I decided to look for “my thing”. Something that excites and inspires me. I did 3 internships in sales in various industries — fashion and tech. It was then that I realized that I need the energy and beat of a commercial company. So I went on to do a master’s degree to diversify my business profile and voila— I discovered L’Oréal, who had a partnership with the university I studied in. I got offered an internship in the Legal department and that’s where our love story began..
The possibility of an international career captured my attention. Then the excitement of the cosmetics world, which is so dynamic and closely related to trends, fashion, art and digital transformation. Also, the fact that L’Oréal was a French company really inspired me. I am half Belgium and did all my studies in a French school. You could say that my heart is a bit bleu/blanc/rouge.
Tell us more about your career path at L’Oréal?
During my internship I fell in love with the company — the industry, the energy and the people. I knew that I was made for L’Oréal! However, legal was not the place for me, and that’s when the HR team came with two offers — one for a commercial role in Active Cosmetics Division and the other — HR in the Social Relations department in Spain. Out of curiousity I chose HR, as I am very people oriented. 12 years on and I’m HR Director of L’Oréal Middle East. It has been an amazing journey: two positions in Madrid in Corporate, two positions in Paris in the Luxury Division: HR Director of the Luxury Division in Spain and lately HR Director of the Peruvian subsidiary. How has this happened you might ask? Flexibility, curiousity, a sense of discovery, hard work and even harder enjoyment.
What’s the best advice to succeed you have got from your peers or manager since you joined L’Oréal?
Be yourself — be authentic. It’s all about the choices that you make every day. It’s about the choice to show up and be real. The choice to be honest. The choice to let your true self be seen and accepted. Embrace it!
What’s something you’ve accomplished during your time at L’Oréal that you’re most proud of?
Being HR Director of the Luxury Division in Spain during the economic crisis 7 years ago was tough. Yet, see how together we have turned the Division around. An amazing achievement! However, the one thing that I am most proud of is to see people that I recruit in my team and in the company grow in their careers, succeed and truly enjoy their time at L’Oréal.
What’s that one thing that you enjoy most about L’Oréal?
The people! Not just people I can laugh and have fun with, but people who really challenge and inspire me to do my very best.
Any words of advice to aspiring L’Oréal future talent?
Be yourself. Have dreams and fight for them. But most of all — be honest… starting with yourself. Determine what really matters to you and go for it. Don’t talk yourself out of something great because it might not be in your wheelhouse — it could be the domino that leads to something that is a once-in-a-lifetime career opportunity.
If you found Jaime particularly inspiring and want to follow in his footsteps then check out our careers site for everything from job vacancies to the locations you may find yourself with L’Oréal.