What it means to be a barber goes far beyond just giving a good haircut. Yes, to be a successful barber you need to have a clean barbershop, give a quality service, have a convenient location, ample parking, and affordable pricing. What I am talking about is what makes your customers and community look at you in a different light. In my opinion the most important aspect of any barber’s job is your communication skills and your ability to build relationships. You can get away with being an average barber if you posses these skills. If you have outstanding talent but do not posses these skills you will have a difficult time becoming a successful barber with the potential for a long career.
I have been reflecting on my two decades in barbering as a technician, shop owner, and educator a lot recently. All of the sudden it hit me: As I am working on so many college kids many of them have been customers since they were 3 or 4 years old or in some cases since their first haircut. Throughout the years a strong relationship has built to the point where some of these guys are asking me advice on all different kinds of topics and life decisions which I consider a huge honor (and great responsibility)! On the other hand I cut many of their father’s hair who often tell me stories about their son’s, what they are up to, and in some cases ask for my opinion on some of their decisions. Again, a huge honor and great responsibility not to be taken lightly!
The best advice I can give is to make sure to always come to work with a smile on your face (even on the bad days), always have a positive attitude, never use bad language, never talk about controversial topics, work on having superior listening skills, and most importantly HAVE FUN! The last one being the most important because if you are laughing, joking around, and having fun it is contagious. Your customers will leave feeling great and keep coming back for more. Add a first class haircut to the mix and you have a combination that can’t be beat!