So I have just moved back to London after 16 years in Bahrain! I have to get used to a new salon, new treatment room, new scent, new people, new products and new guests! Exciting! But I’m so nervous too!
I’m two weeks in to working for Gina Conway Aveda. What a fun, motivating, exciting and stylish environment to be working in! I am loving it!
After working in beauty industry for 10 years, it would be easy to be in the attitude of ‘been there, done that’ – but it always surprises me to see how much more there is to see and learn.
My career started in the Middle East, in Bahrain. The training was superb – I achieved internationally recognized qualifications and the education taught me the importance of the relationship between the therapist and the client.
I managed to land a job in one of the best salons in town – owned by a member of the Bahraini Royal family so we had no problem attracting high profile (and demanding!) clients.
At the salon in Bahrain I felt that there were not many role models to look up to. Not many therapists had the same qualifications or the same standard of professionalism as I had been taught to deliver. Sometimes even language was a problem, with therapists unable to communicate in either English or Arabic!
But I was lucky. I met a hairdresser from Scotland working in the same salon. She had run her own business back at home and knew all the ropes! So, I watched her greeting, treating and advising her guests, and that helped to mould me into the therapist I am today. Together, we built a clientele. It was my customers – their loyalty to me and the salon, their friendship that kept me motivated to stay in the salon for 6 years.
After my time at the salon in Bahrain I felt I needed to move my career forward, to have a new experience and create leadership in a new role.
So I moved back to England.
Starting work in London was so exciting. It just felt very cool to work in the big city of London. Especially working at the London Fashion week: I LOVE making peoples nails look beautiful, and that’s what I got to do all day, crawling under the models’ tables to paint their toes while getting their hair and make-up done, being sandwiched between the backs of the hairstylist and make-up artist painting their finger nails in 2 minutes before they had to be back on the cat-walk. How fun, how different from my little tiny island life!
Then when I started working full-time at a prestigious location in town, I thought I’d made it…but as time went by, I felt I still wasn’t moving forward. I arrived, I gave it my best and I loved my customers, but there wasn’t real leadership or training. And 18 months later I found myself longing for new challenges again. I wasn’t moving forward – that wasn’t why I had made my move to the UK.
It was then that I met the lovely Salima. After just a few minutes talking with her, I found that she saw things a different way. “You don’t only just work for a company, they work for you too. All together we create a happy workplace. A great business challenges its people to do more – and shows appreciation to the efforts made”.
So with a little help from friends and family, I trusted my instincts and took the leap!
And now I’m finding that I’m waking up in the morning excited by the thought of going to work. I’m working with people where I can really build my career; satisfy each and every customer as I continue to add my knowledge and techniques – not forgetting the amazing Aveda products!
You’ll find me at the Wimbledon location; fun, busy and a friendly place!