Full Service Menu Available
After a week of waiting for everything to arrive, it all boiled down to a single item that had to be sent overnight. But as it stands, my complete service menu is available, and it's something a little different than what I've been doing over the past year.
This week has been a lot of questions surrounding, "What happened with you and the old shop? You guys seemed like you were friends and things were going so well." I would like to clarify something that I feel that most people who have worked in call centers can understand. We were not friends, those were not people that I hung out with outside of work. I worked with them and now I no longer work with. I've heard some people say, "business is business, and friendship is friendship," and I couldn't agree more. My friends and family mean the world to me, but that is because I like to surround myself with people that are like-minded, outwardly positive in their actions, and forward thinking in regards to pushing themselves to be better people both professionally and personally. I feel that the only reason I fit into that shop is because it's easy for the tattooed guy to be in a punk rock shop, but to be frank, I'm not punk rock, nor do I want to fall into the punk rock scene again.
To me, punk shows were never about being an asshole for the sake of being an asshole, it was the place that became the catalyst for building relationships. We'd watch bands and in between sets go have fun in the parking lots. The bands that I connected with most would reveal other people that had similar outlooks on life and were struggling with the same issues I was, and that's where I met the people that stayed in my life. In the same way that punk culture influenced my teenage years, corporate jobs influenced my 20's. I didn't love my career, but I met a small handful of people that I could connect with, and they continued to be in my life long after those jobs were complete. Now as I've entered my 30's, I can recognize the positive people that will inspire the positive in me and I like to avoid the rest, so this departure allows me to be the best version of me.
You don't know what you don't know until you know it, and once you know it you can do something about it. Having a landing spot provided me many lessons on what works, and just as beneficial, what didn't work. We were constantly complimented on our online booking and how easy it was, so I knew that was going to be crucial for me to add with my new setup, but there were certainly a number of areas of opportunity that I looked to improve upon. The biggest area was in the chair itself. The chair I had been working in was simply an inexpensive chair that allowed a barber to work behind with minimal expense. The problem with inexpensive equipment is that you get what you pay for. I was told by many people it was uncomfortable to sit in for extended periods of time, and as a barber it was difficult to recline, difficult to bring back upright, sank during shaves, and there were a laundry list of other issues that were mostly invisible to clients who hadn't been in another chair. I knew that I didn't want to find myself with the same opportunities, so I made the decision that my clients deserve to have an experience that was worth the price of admission. I researched every chair I could to make sure I was getting quality over quantity; I could have purchased three chairs for what I spent on the one, but at the end of the day, I feel that every person coming to me deserves to have a break from their day and relax during their haircut.
So October 27th, I place an order for all of my equipment, and the waiting game began. A lot of it came within the next two days. First, it was my towels, then it was my hot towel warmer, then my hot lather machine. Everything was coming into place until I get an email from the company in California that is shipping my chair. It said that the anticipated delivery wasn't going to be until the 7th. Frustrating, yes, but I'd survive. My EyeVac arrived (great for anyone with hardwood floors and hates bending over) and my booster seat came in, all I was waiting on was my chair. November 2nd, I get a call while I'm talking to one of the girls that works in the salon, it was the freight company and they wanted to schedule a delivery because my package arrived in Boise. I got off the phone with her and literally jumped onto my seat in excitement. The next morning, it arrived.
191 pounds of happiness was sitting in my garage. Later that afternoon, a friend helped me take it to the salon and get it put together. It was beautiful, it rotated so smoothly, it was one of the most comfortable chairs I had sat in, and it was mine. The only thing it didn't do was recline. I started panicking as the chair was fully assembled when I realized they failed to include the lever that allows the recline mechanism to be triggered. I was now 3 days into running my own business, and I couldn't offer all of my services. That evening when I left the shop, I called them and spoke to the girl on the other line, "I'm going to try and be as cordial as I possibly can, but I can't begin to explain how mad I am at something that isn't your fault, so forgive me if I get short. While it isn't your fault, someone on your end made a mistake and I need you to overnight me this lever." The girl was incredibly helpful, and got everything taken care of. The next day my lever arrived as I was finishing up with my first haircut of the day. I was about to start his neck lineup when I saw the UPS man pull up and I stopped what I was doing and ran to the door to meet him with jubilation. I held the lever like Ash held his boomstick, this was the final piece to the puzzle.
So now my complete service menu is available for online booking, and with the additional space that I have in the salon, I ordered something to be paired with my shaves and facials that I haven't seen anyone in Boise use, and it's definitely a relaxing addition to the service. I don't want to give away too many secrets, so if you want to find out you'll have to come down to try it for yourself. The last thing I need to add is grooming products, but I will make a post later when those make their way to me.
I plan on staying in this location for at least a year or two, learning as much as I can about running a business before opening my own location and having employees rely on me, but the foundation has been laid, and The Barber Story isn't going anywhere. I hope to see you in my chair soon.