Sara Dreamer

Vice President Innovation

Marianna Beauty. We are a Midwest-based custom manufacturer of hair care and personal care formulas.

I work with brands to turn their ideas & aspirations into commercialized products by translating chemistry & manufacturing processes into opportunities - bridging the gap between dreaming & succeeding.

Although I love seeing products I developed on, sitting on the shelf at Target, or hitting Allure magazine's best sellers list, nothing beats the relationships I get to build along the way. It takes about a year to develop a bottle of shampoo. 10-12 months that require dozens of daily emails, weekly meetings, and countless text messages and calls. One bottle of shampoo rewards me with friendships and memories are made with clients across the globe, chemists with PhD's, perfumists with amazing talents, packaging engineers with an eye for detail, project managers who keep us on track, owners that pour their hearts into their work, stylists that activate beauty in our industry, and the list goes on. I love that one bottle of shampoo does so much more than just clean our hair!

My friends often reference me as a squirrel chasing a nut or a gum ball machine full of trinkets that fall in their hand with just a quarter. My natural curiosity paired with my innovation roles, forces each day to be different. The majority of my day is spent communicating with clients. I lead new business development which means I spend a lot of time connecting with people I haven't met. You might not believe this, but it's true ... my grandma actually encouraged me to talk to strangers when I was young! She told me a stranger is merely someone you haven't taken the time to meet yet. That single life lesson has rewarded me so many times in my career and my life. Communicating is easy when you know who you are communicating with. And the only way to know who you are communicating with, is to know who you are communicating with - directly or indirectly. Beyond communicating with others, I also spend everyday looking for something new. I'm sure your parents have asked you the question "what did you learn today". If you answered them with "nothing", you are simply doing yourself a disservice. None the less, my customers expect me to teach them something new. Today, I usually find something new online or at Target. I browse different sections in the store and purposely SKIP the beauty isles! Finding something new is awfully hard to do in a place you are most familiar with. Packaging design is amazing in the food sections - especially off brand condiments, packaging content inspiration is great in the appliances section where features and benefits are required to educate shoppers on how things work, clothing sections often have the best display of logo designs - the small tags on clothing require brand designers to be disciplined to say a lot without saying much at all. A squirrel chasing a nut ... I guess I just proved how accurate that actually is:)

My journey was just that ... a journey! My college career was cut short but achieving my career goals was still important to me. Life quickly became my classroom. I began my career in graphic design. My first position was for a farmer that lived 8 country miles from my and my husband's rural farmhouse. John started a business selling his hay to rabbit owners. Yep, rabbits. For the first 7 years of my career I sold rabbit food and I loved it! I started laying out catalogs and sales fliers and proudly left Oxbow to take on the next challenge. I committed to learning and fell in love with selling. If you can sell rabbit food in Japan without speaking Japanese - you can do anything:) I continued working in the pet industry and achieved the status and impact I was pushing for, then, I almost lost my family. My husband and 2 sons in elementary school at the time started talking to me over the phone more than in person. I wouldn't believe anyone at the time but I picked work over my family without even realizing it. I had to walk away from a job that I had worked so hard for, but it was the right thing to do. The next several years included a host of jobs, each that I accepted and left for the same reason - to learn something new. I ran an online pet store where I learned the in's and out's of inventory management, SEO, and digital commerce (I even got fork lift certified so I could unload trucks in the warehouse), worked at an advertising agency where I fine tuned my marketing skills, launched a startup business for the University of Nebraska Medical Center with habit-forming bracelets that were invented by two of their physicians, I helped deploy a business incubator for Creighton University College of Business, and then started selling shampoo:) The greatest part of my journey is, it is just getting started!

My next position will be Chief Growth Officer. I don't know the company or the location of their headquarters, but that will be my next position.

I live on 80 acres in rural Nebraska and grew up on a farm in Iowa. I'm an outdoorsy lady with an addiction to high heel shoes and purses! I love being outside building, fishing, ATV riding, gardening, and hanging out with friends and neighbors. I often catch myself giggling a bit when I hear people encourage us to socially distance ourselves in our spare time ... my closest neighbor is over a mile away which means everyday is social distancing for us:)

I have many, but one of my favorites is - work hard to be smarter than others, you just don't tell them that.