How to make it as a…
1 Raise your profile
“To get this type of role you need to work hard and get noticed. I went on a lot of training courses to hone my skills, as well as doing session work with Marian Newman and working on editorial shoots for magazines such as Vogue.
“You also shouldn’t be afraid to ask for a promotion.
During my time at Cuccio, I’ve gone from training manager to national head of education to European head of education. Every time I got to a point where I thought I’d achieved all I could, I approached Stuart [Dickinson, owner of Cuccio Europe] and we discussed how we could expand my role.”
2 Be prepared to work hard
“Managing an education programme is an intensive process – it takes a lot of paper work and training. I’ve spent the past year piloting systems, running courses on our new Pro Powder Polish dip system, and nurturing our educators and students. My role is big and sometimes it can feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day, but the results are worth the hard graft.”
3 CPD keeps you at the top
“I think educators can fall into the trap of becoming stagnant. They reach a certain level and think they don’t need to learn anything more but it’s a dangerous and complacent attitude to have. I work on my CPD to stay sharp – reading industry articles and attending workshops.
“Also, when I receive new Cuccio products I’ll try and pull them apart to see where their strengths and weaknesses lie and do in-depth research into the ingredients. As the head, you need to know your company’s products inside out.”
4 Don’t be afraid to voice your concerns
“At times, I’ve felt there were areas in the company that needed sharpening up and I’ve told Stuart my thoughts. When nurturing an education programme for a big brand, you must be brave enough to speak your mind.
“For example, I knew I had to change things so that when our educators come on board they feel part of a family and that they have full control over their students.”
5 Master the art of communication
“The most challenging part of my role is managing the educators, especially as the team is spread far and wide. I talk to them on the phone at least once a month to discuss how things are going and they know they can contact me about anything at any time.
“There’s also the issue of team dynamics. The role is about growing and developing a team that’s united and supportive of one another. It can so easily become a competition between educators. I try and get them all together twice a year to show them our new products, network and discuss any issues.”
6 Work on these key qualities…
“If I was recruiting for this role, I’d hire someone who was empathetic, good at time management and a people person. In the job, you not only deal with educators but students and salon customers too, so you need to be able to adapt your approach.”