Students at the start of their careers in the hair and beauty industry received inspirational insights from a successful entrepreneur.
Beverley Bates, an award-winning hair stylist and founder of Ekko, which opened as a Banbury-based salon in 2003, delivered the motivational masterclass at Banbury and Bicester College.
Beverley shared stories of her time in business, which included starting her first salon at the age of 19, winning industry awards and competitions, styling for fashion magazines and setting up her own training schemes for new stylists.
Beverley, who now runs Ekko as a suite of high-end hair, beauty and lifestyle businesses from a base in the countryside, said: “In today’s competitive world, you have to be an expert in what you do and take your work to a much higher level. I am passionate about developing and inspiring young people, and my message to anyone is to keep learning and keep growing. Your initial training is just the foundation, but with the right attitude and work ethic, you can do things you never thought possible. Always be ready to learn.”
Beverley has won local and national awards, including Best Banbury Business and the British Hairdressing Championships. She is currently artistic brand ambassador for the UK division of luxury brand, La Societe de Biosthetique.
Student, Wioletta Lomentowicz, aged 18, said: “The session with Beverley was very interesting. What came through was that she kept on trying to succeed and never gave up, even when there were obstacles in her way. I want to run my own business one day, so the information she shared was very relevant. I now understand the benefit of working in a salon first, before running your own, and to make sure you have a plan B to go to if plan A does go as you’d imagined.”