Scott Colabuono of Fantastic Sams enjoys a photo opp with celebrity Pamela Anderson at the Presidents Reception at the International SalonSpa Business Network in San Antonio, Texas. (Photo by Jayne Morehouse) Executives representing thousands of multi-unit salons gathered in San Antonio, Texas, in May for the 2013 International SalonSpa Business Network conference. On the agenda over the symposium’s two days was a roster of topics that promise to shape the future of the professional beauty industry, including technology, legislation, and growing consumer service expectations.
To kick off the event, ISBN President Jason Volk, CEO of Chatters Canada and Tommy Guns Original Barbershops, hosted a Texan-style welcoming reception under the oak trees Sunday evening, May 19. Celebrity Pamela Anderson, who was flown in by luxury hair brand Obliphica, surprised guests at the reception and posed for pictures.
The next morning Volk welcomed attendees by sharing his personal story of how much the association helped him grow his business. “We’ve grown from 20 salons to 115, and I attribute much of that to ISBN, its members and sponsors and their willingness to share,” he said. “You may not be expecting anything by coming to this conference but be surprised to walk away with something really profound.”
Next, Volk, along with JCPenney’s Paula Malloy and Gould’s Salon and Spas’ Philip Gould, presented the association’s Lifetime Achievement Award to Carlton Whitaker, vice president of Mitchell’s Spas and Hairstyling Academy in Raleigh, North Carolina. “I accept this with a very humble heart,” Whitaker told the audience in a heartfelt speech. “I love people, and I love this organization and it’s always been so encouraging to me to be a part of it.”
Then, Keynote Speaker Andrew Ranson took the stage to talk to the group about the importance of technology-infused leadership. “Learning about technology today is as important as learning to read your balance sheet,” he warned the group. “As a set of tools that we can use to improve what humans can do, technology has become an X factor in organizational success—companies that use it well are prospering, while those that don’t are struggling.”
Ranson gave the group a look at the technologies coming down the road, such as Google glasses, cybernetic headbands, and implants, and the implications they have on business. He also showed the owners how to developed a ‘high-beam’ ability to identify technological trends that will shape the future.