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The Year Ahead

Kohl’s CEO on Sephora, Stimulus, and Employee Vaccinations

Michelle Gass says that even with digital shopping on the rise, stores have an important role to play.



Source: Kohls

Michelle Gass, a former Starbucks marketing executive, has been chief executive officer of retailer Kohl’s Corp. since 2018. She’s turned her department stores into go-to destinations for shoppers, including opening Amazon return centers in more than 1,160 of them. Her latest partner: beauty giant Sephora.

I’ve never been so proud of our organization and how they delivered [the] holiday to our customers. Everything was different, yet everything was the same. Kohl’s had all the protocols in place to protect the safety of our associates and customers. Our hours were different. We ran our promotions differently, like Black Friday started earlier. Marketing was different—it was a lot more digital than we’ve ever been, and we’ve been leaning into that quite heavily. We are a known destination at holiday time and really, really proud of the way the organization showed up.