Our training, your way

Sharon Bailey found her success in Hair and Beauty: As told by Personal Tutor Nicky Creswick

When I met Sharon Bailey, she was a general support in the salon that she worked for, starting out with an incomplete Level 2 in hairdressing, being used as the shampooist, receptionist, sweeper-upper - you name it, she was it! There was no practical training, let alone any theory. Sharon was bumbling along everyday, not progressing or moving in any particular direction.

I visited the salon and introduced myself and Paragon Skills to the team and discussed how we deliver one to one teaching and learning, tailored programmes that are adapted to each individual person and the whole salon decided to sign up there and then.

Sharon approached me on that day, and whilst she was quiet and reserved, she asked if I could help her get back on track with her hairdressing. She really stood out amongst the crowd. Whilst she was more mature than her salon colleagues, she had been pushed to one side and accepted her lot. However I could see the potential, the eagerness that she had for learning, and the raw passion and drive. I knew then that Sharon was going to go places, do things and be someone.

As we worked together I began to see her excitement grow when I demonstrated different cutting techniques, or different ways to hold the scissors. I soon found out that she had had no previous guidance or support and was never given the opportunity to try or even practice. But, she was quick on the uptake and followed every instruction to the T, and made sure that her theory work was completed and then would ask for more!

Soon she had blossomed into a real stylist. She studied hard for her functional skills (Level 1 was hard for her, as she has never been shown any methods and had always hated maths at school). However she eventually gained her full Level 2 diploma in Hairdressing and Level 1 functional skills.

Then she signed back up for her Level 3 Hairdressing – thirsty for knowledge and growing in confidence she put many of my other learners to shame. Then she went onto Barbering, gaining her Level 2 and steadily growing her own clientele.

Finally, something shifted in her. She had the confidence to make an incredibly bold decision and set up her own salon. By approaching family members for financial support she got set up and was now the sole manager of Revive salon – she had the final say in how things got done, how it would run and who worked for her.

Sharon is quite the business woman, continually looking for ways to promote the salon and engage with clients. She recently held a promotional event to launch new services she has learned during her Level 3 Beauty apprenticeship (yes, she is still learning!).

She recently asked me, ‘What else can I do about Level 3 Beauty?’ and her eyes lit up when I gave her the different options. It is clear for anyone to see the passion, the determination and drive in her that is making her who she is. 

I am so proud of this once shy and introverted woman who took that opportunity years ago to talk to me, and work with Paragon Skills to get her dream of success back on track.

Oh, and did I mention on top of this amazing career she is first and foremost a mum to a 20 year old with special needs, a football mad 14 year old and a dancing obsessed 12 year old. One hell of a woman, I couldn’t be prouder!