Why there’s always more to learn
Autumn is about consolidating before the winter months, and the busy Christmas period, arrive. After a hectic summer of business in the salon or spa, October and November provide an opportunity to take stock of what's been achieved, and plan for what you want to accomplish in the remaining months of 2019 and into 2020.
As well as preparing the salon, making sure you're ordering in items for retailing in the run up to the festivities, and refreshing your treatment menu to take into account seasonal changes, autumn is also a wonderful time to take stock of your own professional achievements and how you'd like to progress.
Whether you're a business owner, or work as a professional therapist, hairdresser, barber or nail tech in a salon or mobile, there's always something to learn. Whatever our career, whilst we can gain the necessary qualifications in order for us to work professionally, I don't believe that we can ever say that we are fully trained.
This is particularly relevant when you're working in an industry like ours which is fast moving and demands the very best in customer service and delivering consistent results that cultivate loyalty. Afterall, it's so much easier to build a business based around loyal clients who return time and again, than it is to be constantly fighting for new business from your competitors.
Education is so key to our industry; and it's important to realise that, although you might have passed your Level 2 or 3 qualifications, you can never really evolve and grow as a professional without continued training.
Not only does training ensure that your treatment skills using the most innovative techniques and products are the freshest they can be, the feeling of achievement once you've completed a course and received your certificate is immense. Plus, if you're ever having a bad day at work – and let's face it, we all have them – knowing what you've achieved during your last training course, or what you're about to learn on a forthcoming class, is a real boost to your self-esteem. If you're apprehensive about the forthcoming Christmas rush, book yourself onto a course for January; it's so good to have something to look forward to.
Constantly learning also gives you more options. If you feel stuck in a rut, your job options are limited or everyone else's career seems to be flying when yours isn't, then adding to your CV and skills base can only be positive.
Undertaking training by choice shows your commitment to the industry and your career, and is certainly attractive to employers. It also shows that you are open to learning new things, so even if you aren't qualified in the treatments that a particular salon is looking for, a range of different recognised courses on your CV demonstrates that you are willing and capable of learning to a high standard.
Finding the right training provider can be daunting. How do you know which one to choose? How easy will it be to offer treatments to clients once you're qualified? How do you even find beauty or hair schools offering specific courses? Don't panic! As an ABT member, we're here to support you.
ABT's Accreditation service enables us to share with you all of the beauty and hair training providers and courses that we have approved and endorsed. There are in excess of 1,000 training providers internationally that have gained ABT Accreditation.
The accreditation process means that all training materials are reviewed, and our team of accreditation experts check that they meet all of the criteria required under ABT insurance standards. What this means to you as an ABT member is that you can undertake any of these ABT Accredited courses with the confidence that you will be able to add the treatment to your ABT membership and insurance policy once you have successfully qualified, and thus offer the treatment or service in your salon or business. Most treatments can be added to existing ABT memberships for no extra charge (additional charges apply to some advanced treatments – see our website for more details).
Locating an ABT Accredited training provider or college is really easy; you can do it on your phone, laptop or device, call the ABT team or ask via our Live Chat service on the ABT website. You can even find all of our accredited educators in our listings at the back of this issue of Beauty & Hairdressing.
To search for a training provider near to you, use our online tool either on the ABT website or at BeautyandHairdressing.co.uk, enter your postcode and the schools geographically closest to you will be displayed; you can even contact them via our handy link. Coming soon, you'll have the opportunity to search by course or subject, to refine the results and find the perfect training provider for you.
So take this opportunity that autumn brings, and consider how you could grow your career, or business, or both, by investing some time in yourself and your knowledge that could make 2020 your best year yet.
Dave Horton is Director of Associated Beauty Therapists (ABT), the industry's leading membership and insurance provider representing over 18,000 beauty, nail and hair professionals. For more information telephone 01789 773573 or visit www.abtinsurance.co.uk.