Based in the heart of London's hipster hot-spot Camden, the HOB Academy has seen countless talented students pass through its doors. Here, former HOB Apprentice Academy Programme Manager, Keryl Titmus shares 10 of the most important - and useful - things you’ll learn as a hairdressing apprentice.
First and foremost, you'll learn various skills as an hairdressing apprentice. From the techniques and approach that make up the perfect consultation, and the backbar experience to cutting and styling, setting and dressing. You'll also cover various colouring techniques, men's cutting and the essential knowledge and understanding that will make you an all-round successful hairdresser.
2. Customer excellence
You'll learn how to deal with clients, which includes being helpful and caring as well as giving advice to clients. You'll cover effective communication skills, different types of client behaviour and how to maintain best practice at all times.
3. Front of house duties
As an apprentice, you might also cover reception duties which means meeting and greeting clients, taking payments, developing a telephone manner and general customer relations. You'll also cover selling retail and products to clients as well as maintaining a welcoming and professional reception area.
4. How to assist stylists
You'll learn how to prepare work areas for stylists and colour technicians, as well as preparing their clients for their upcoming services. This will also include how best to look after clients and provide them with refreshments to keep them comfortable and relaxed.
5. Maths and English essentials
Applying maths and English in the workplace is a really useful part of being an hairdressing apprentice. These might include speaking and listening in client consultations, ratios and percentages for colour formulations and problem solving on the spot.
6. Professional development
This includes everything from time management, building confidence and creating a positive impression of yourself and your organisation through to developing and maintaining effectiveness at work, using your own initiative and personal hygiene and professionalism.
7. Effective team work
Want to develop yourself within your organisation by setting targets and goals to achieve your full potential as part of the team? That's something you'll learn all about as an apprentice. Working as a team is essential at every stage in your career, so focus on building relationships with colleagues and clients as well as communicating effectively with your team workers.
8. Taking responsibility and ownership
From life skills, time management and awareness of the industry's requirements through to dealing with difficult situations, developing leadership skills, gaining confidence and independence and becoming an effective self-manager is a core part your growth and progression. Establishing yourself as a reflective thinker and an effective participator in salon activities will also focus your commitment and motivational skills.
9. An understanding of employment rights and responsibilities
Developing a knowledge and understanding of your employee rights and responsibilities, as well as those of your employer, will effectively prepare you for the world of work. You will also explore the all-important contracts of employment, job descriptions, personnel records and employment procedures.
10. Career-boosting enhancements
Additional training above and beyond your NVQ training should include attending shows and exhibitions and entering photographic competitions and will extend to product knowledge training days to develop knowledge and retail skills.