There is no doubt that the barbering industry is booming lately. No longer just a case of ‘short-back-and-sides’, the creativity and progression of barbers has really taken off in the last few years.
At the heart of this barbering revolution is the Great British Barber Bash. Offering education to barbers of all levels, along with their exciting Barber Bash competitions and events, The Great British Barber Bash combines training with motivation and inspiration to an impressive degree.
So, for this month’s Ask the Expert feature, we caught up with founder, Garry Spencer to find out how to make it big in the barbering world…
Can you give us an introduction to yourself and the Great British Barber Bash?
The Great British Barber Bash has been established for approximately six years now and hosts major barbering events and education seminars, workshops and courses. The shows are held across the UK and beyond, and are attended by hundreds of people. We have held them in all the major cities in the UK as well as Amsterdam. We have plans for more mainland Europe events next year.
Our education offers one and two day courses across the UK and as far afield as Malta, Dubai, Spain and Portugal. We also offer bespoke in-salon education and this year we are developing beginner courses to complement the ones already offered to barbers and hairdressers.
What do you love most about being a part of the barbering industry?
The barbering industry is thriving and standards have been getting higher and higher, particularly in the last five years. The trade is buzzing like never before and the culture and the camaraderie is something that we are very proud to be part of and hope to have enhanced and developed.
Why do you think your Barber Bash events have been so successful?
Our events have been extremely successful for many reasons. We set out originally to offer something different to the other shows that were around. The venues we have chosen are urban, cool warehouse type spaces that create a fantastic atmosphere.
We have also brought over barbers from different countries, which was something of a first in the UK barbering world. Opportunity is given at all of our shows for new barbers to show their skills, which we feel is critical for our industry to keep progressing. We keep changing venues, line ups and formats for each event – we don’t want to stand still!
What type of training or qualifications would you recommend to barbers – both new and experienced?
It is of the utmost importance for people to stay motivated and inspired with the profession. Our one and two day courses are excellent at providing a new insight into the trade. Experienced barbers and hairdressers can gain new methods and learn new processes to help re-energise their skill set.
You need to keep pushing forward and improving your skills to stay at the forefront in this industry, therefore continuous education is essential.
What would you say is key to successful barber training?
Successful barbering education has to be professionally delivered and also has to be designed to take the attendees out of their comfort zone. We always aim to stretch the creativity of people who attend our courses.
In addition, our education not only focuses on the latest cuts and styles, but also on subjects such as client retention, building your business, promotion through social media and a whole host of other important and relevant areas.
How do you make sure you stay on top of your game in terms of industry knowledge?
Attending shows, education events and also staying abreast of the latest fashions on social media are some of the key elements to keeping yourself motivated and on point with your skills.
Barbering for many years was an industry that almost stood still and only recently has become as progressive as it deserves and needs to be. Continuous movement and pushing the boundaries is what will keep us at the front in our fashion industry.
How have you seen the image of barbering change over the years?
We are at a great time for barbering. Skills are at their highest ever and service and customer care have never been more important. People’s perception of barbering has definitely improved in recent years and if we keep on this professional track we are taking as an industry, it can only be positive and exciting for the trade as a whole.
What advice would you give to those just starting out on a barbering career?
New people starting out in the industry must ensure they put the ground work in as there are no shortcuts to success. Take time with your training and try not to rush. Absorb as much information as you can when attending events and learn from as many people as possible. Online education can also help with YouTube and other similar channels that provide free tuition. Work hard and push yourself as much as possible and the rewards will be there.
What does the future hold for The Great British Barber Bash?
We aim to keep pushing the industry forward and enhancing what is a terrific and exciting time for barbering.
If you need any professional barbering supplies, shop online today with Salons Direct to find everything you need.
Find more barbering advice on our blog…