If it’s Tuesday it must be over ... Beauty Week in Las Vegas at Cosmoprof/PBA/NCA, that is.
Well it is Tuesday, and I’m on a plane back home, along with legends Sam Brocato and David Raccuglia, as well as a team of professional salon distributors. Their presence reminds me that colleagues are one family, relatives are another, and there is commonality in what you do for both. Like being prepared for what they give and take, making time for them, learning from them and appreciating them. Nothing brought this home like Beauty Week, which underscored that much of connecting with any family is about shared experiences.
At the show, I presented the Business of Beauty Report for the Professional Beauty Association (PBA). Pre-planning for three rotating workshops that would delve into myth busting, we organized the data for a fresh vision from the client’s perspective. The idea: When you experience what the client does—when you stand in her shoes—you realize that retailing = retaining.
Many salons are like a safe-haven for their clients, and hairdressers act as personal confidants. These deeper stylist-client connections make Cut It Out! Stylists Against Domestic Violence a natural partnership-program, which is why I agreed to present it during the North American Hairstyling Awards.
Presenting at NAHA
It is a dark and fearsome topic, domestic abuse. Our call to action was to place literature in salon bathrooms to offer a way out, a ray of hope, a number to call. What makes more sense than a free-to-salons program that allows them to possibly save the precious life of someone close to them?
Our extended families are part of many of our first experiences, and for all of mine, I still have them and hope that never changes. My “first” at the show was to moderate a summit of four CEOs and encourage them to speak about their companies’ culture, perspectives of the industry and leadership philosophies. I had never moderated a panel before and when I was initially invited to host the event, I immediately said, “No.” I would be out of my comfort zone, and I sure didn’t want that!
But another “family” member was there to help and encourage. My speaking agent Bobi Seredich insisted that I could do it and arranged for a coach to work with me. The training was concise and pointed, and the trainer gave me homework to complete, ensuring I would adhere to the mantra: “They are the Kings of Content, You are the Queen of Process.”
It was my job to maintain momentum and energy, and make the panel feel comfortable answering my questions. I am so grateful for that training! Without having Power Point presentations to prompt them, Michael Riley of Scruples, Ron Krassin of Zotos, John Heffner of Creative Nail Design and Pat Parenty of L’Oreal USA Professional Products Division spoke openly and honestly about common issues facing employees, distributors, salons and customers. It was enlightening and hopeful, and I had a sense the audience felt the same.
Naturally, in-between the events were the hugs and hellos, followed by hallway conversations and coffees—all for the purpose of catching up with friends and reconnecting with colleagues. At the City of Hope Spirit of Life event honoring Eva Graham of Nioxin fame, the outpouring of support and evidence of family came through loud and clear via donations and attendance.
With City of Hope honoree Eva Graham, of Nioxin
To complete the weekend, I reconnected with my cousin Ty, who is the father of four. Ty has spent his entire adult life standing at the gambling tables as a dealer and was recently promoted to pit boss at Caesar’s and Planet Hollywood.
Of all the moments of the weekend, those with my cousin and his children were the most poignant. There’s just nothing like blood connections, because they give you a true sense of belonging—of where you fit in.
As Ty and I talked, we found ourselves drifting toward something family members naturally do when they re-connect: We recounted one of the shared experiences that cements us. It was the day my sister passed away, and there were 16 of us standing around her bed holding hands, singing and telling stories, as she quietly, with dignity, slipped into her next eternal life. She taught me how to die gracefully. And it was important for Ty and his kids to recognize how we’re in this together—and that we must make a stronger effort to stay in touch and be there for each other.
We hugged, kissed and promised. We solidified our connections.
For families both hereditary and chosen, experiences old and new, planning to connect and share is what makes us feel accomplished, happy and human. It’s the electricity of our lives.
bout Ann Mincey
For 35 years, Ann Mincey’s training programs have helped beauty professionals reduce stress, refuel creativity, open their hearts and enrich their lives. As one of the first women to teach motivation, inspiration, confidence and well-being, Ann worked for Redken 5th Avenue NYC, where she advanced to Vice President of Global Communications before recently retiring. She remains a spokesperson for the brand, in addition to developing her own speaking and enrichment business. Having been recognized with numerous leadership awards and philanthropic honors, Ann is a sought-after public speaker and author of “Get Glowing! You are a Star Right Where You Are!”. She can be booked through Equanimity, Inc. speakers’ agency (equanimity.com). Salon industry inquiries should be made to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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