September 2009

Jerry Tyler

Blue Highways | by Jerry Tyler


Be the Best That You Can Be

Have you ever felt this certain pride in your chosen profession when you realized you were right in the middle of something inspirational happening?

I certainly did, when I found myself sitting amongst 75 top stylists in Los Angeles as we gathered to support and be inspired by the mastery of one of our own at their product launch.

It was so gratifying when we were driving home to realize that even on the highest levels of our industry the pro’s continually educate themselves and seek inspiration.

My friend commented, “Jerry, we are at our best, right now,” and I had to agree. We felt elevated to another level after the experience. We felt part of something eventful and enlightening as well as educational.

When you study the major “built to last” business models globally who are thriving even in our current reality, you find this constant discipline in their cultures of continual learning. They are always practicing and work at a never-ending improvement of their products and services. They are always seeking new knowledge and techniques to better deliver their magic. They are never complacent and are always taking their brands to the next level.

Continuing education and training is the part of the total make up of any successful individual or collective business model that keeps the brand constantly growing. What we need to ask ourselves is, “Is this part of who I am, or what I wish to be in my quest for success?”

In the book on financial abundance, Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill, the author points to “specific knowledge” and “continuing education” as the foundational focuses for those who seek true abundance in life.

But just desiring it isn’t enough. Active pursuit is needed to make it real; constant and never ending. While success can be an ultimate destination it takes a continual and constant journey to take place to maintain the constant end result of fulfillment.

It takes effort and energy to seek, gain and provide education. In the case of the event we attended, it took the work of the most trusted provider of high-end salon tools and salon furnishings to the highest echelons of LA hair “Veronica Collins” to use that trust to fill that room with their presence.

Philip Carreon of Estilio Salon/Project Runway; Teddy Antolin, photo stylist; Chaz Dean of Wen Products; Chris Macmillan, Jennifer Aniston’s stylist and salon owner; Michael O’Rourke of Sexy Hair; Kisha Collier from Beauty Business Development; Tom Brophy, master stylist and salon owner; too name a few.

It took the respect these master artists have for “Oribe” the phenomenal celebrity/editorial stylist whose signature product line he was launching, to get them to leave their collective salons at 5:00 a.m. on a Tuesday and brave the infamous LA traffic to attend the event. It took the two owners of the host salon of the event David Abrams and Jason Lara of LUX LAB, to not only close their salon for the event but to provide their staff to ensure its success. It took a great collaborative effort of all involved to make that magical evening and educational event memorable.

Continuing education has, at least in our industry, never been more available for any level of licensee to obtain. Just go to any of the many trade shows that appeal to the broad market and the niche markets of our industry. With the advent of the web there are numerous sites that continually feature upgrades on the new and now in products, techniques and services.

Business networking sites such as “Linked-in” and the “Beauty Student Network” allow us all to network which is the best way to stay relevant and up-to-date. Many states are now using continuing education requirements to keep their licensing populations abreast on new health safety and public protection protocols as part of their license renewal processes.

Many states require their instructors to seek continuing education to hone their teaching skills and stay industry savvy as many in the educational community aren’t in the salon world and need to stay current on salon trends that will need to be taught to their future salon industry professionals. Most of the professional product providers offer education for all their share takers to keep current on new products and their applications.

The passion we have to continually educate ourselves should be part of the make up of who we are professionally and personally because all successful people apply what they learn to both professional and personal development to be whole in their collective being and successful in all areas of life.

Jerry Tyler’s column Blue Highways is his “Road Less Traveled” perspective on the solutions and challenges facing the beauty industry. Jerry Tyler has been a stylist since 1975 serving as the former artistic director for Vidal Sassoon Academy and currently as Director of Education for Carlton Hair salons. He is also a licensed cosmetology instructor and has served as President of the California State Board of Barbering and Cosmetology.