Being patient when launching a business is important, says entrepreneur Erika Wasser
Alongside passion and perseverance, being patient is a necessary trait that might not come naturally to all entrepreneurs.
When money is on the line, risks are high and time is of the essence, many entrepreneurs may want to execute quickly. They might also feel pressured to see success as soon as possible – and get results fast.
They might want to get their idea out before the next entrepreneur steps in front of them and so be the first to solve that problem that no one else has.
Otherwise, entrepreneurs often have to assess situations and make decisions and strategize on the fly – especially when things don’t go to plan.
But, being impatient can perhaps effect relationships (internal and external) when others can’t keep up. Business negotiations might also falter and decision making become flawed.
Communications can get lost and when things start to go wrong, impatience may even lead to an entrepreneur ending up quitting.
An award-winning salon chain and blowout membership service with locations in NYC, Miami and LA is one of the best examples of a new business where the founder has grown her company with perseverance, passion and patience.
Since launching in 2015 in New York City and GLAM + Go now boasts 8 locations in the United States and is one of the fastest growing city-based hair styling services in the country.
And whilst CEO and GLAM & GO Founder Erika Wasser and her team have spent necessary time searching for the right partners and locations that fit well with her brand, they’ve joined forces with a selection of gyms, hotels and residential towers across the USA.
These include The Fairmont Miramar, Loews Hotels, The Gansevoort Group, Equinox, Exhale and others.
Over time, their 30-minute Signature Blowouts and 15-minute Express Blowouts have also been perfected by a carefully chosen team of stylists who always work to the highest of standards.
And so today GLAM + GO has become the blow dry bar of choice for women on-the-go who seek the best stylists to blow dry their hair and who desire impeccable looks.
Make-up applications, mens grooming and manicures are also now on the GLAM + GLO rosta.
Here New York-based Erika tells Nativa World about her entrepreneurial journey and why she thinks being patient or patience is one of the greatest virtues needed when launching a new business..
Erika, what’s your background?
I started my career as a stand-up comedian and on-air host for HGTV. My journey in entrepreneurship and business was almost accidental. I really saw a need for women to be able to get super efficient, great quality beauty services.
Why did GLAM + GO come to life?
I like to work out a lot, so I’m pretty much always in need of a blowout. When I was being prepped in green rooms before my hosting gigs, I couldn’t help but notice the efficient and very high quality blowouts I got in just 15-20 minutes! This was an experience, as a busy woman, I feel like was missing in the “real world.” I mean, if I was finding myself too busy to get my hair blown out after my workouts, what is a working mom supposed to do? Or a woman with a job that keeps working longer than the typical 9-5? Or someone who has to deal with a long commute?
I wanted to replicate that quick, professional glam experience for every woman, which is how I came up with GLAM+GO. This is also why GLAM+GO’s are almost exclusively co-located in fitness centers or in hotels. I wanted this service to be where women need them the most. I pitched the idea of GLAM+GO to our original partner back in 2015 and they got it right away so I put together our first location in just 30 days. The rest is history!
What problem does GLAM + GO solve?
The GLAM+GO customer is a busy woman, so we offer efficient and exceptional beauty services at a fair price. Whether she needs to pop in for a 30 Minute Signature Blowout before a big presentation or comes in as an Unlimited Monthly Member after every workout, she can always expect consistent results without spending her whole day at the salon.
The response has been amazing. In just three years we’ve established nine permanent locations in three cities (our 10th, located in Washington, DC, will open in Fall 2018).
What challenges have you faced?
We’ve faced all kinds of challenges from big to small—which I think a lot of business owners can relate to—everything from a pipe bursting and flooding one of our locations to employee issues to trying to take on things that, as a business, we weren’t ready for. I think the important thing for me (and any business owner, really) is to be honest about what you’re going through and learn from it. I think that’s one of the keys that has made us successful – we’re always completely honest with our partners, so even if we do cause a flood, we own up to it and get working on a solution before they call us!
Probably the number 1 thing I’ve learned on this journey is “all knots eventually untie themselves”. This mantra is something I keep in mind in regards to every challenge we face. A lot of the time, when a problem or issue is in front of you, it can feel insurmountable. I’ve found that being patient can go a long way in problem solving.
Things may not work out exactly how you planned or exactly when you planned, but when you’re being patient, they work out the way they’re supposed to.
What are your goals for the business?
We just opened our first flagship storefront location in TriBeCa at 93 Worth St. This location is a big opportunity for us in a lot of ways; it’s our first standalone location (not co-located inside a hotel or fitness center), it’s our first full service salon offering cuts, extensions, nails, treatments and more—so we’re really excited about it. In keeping with our mission of giving the busy woman everything she could possibly need, our flagship offers a top shelf champagne bar (assuming she has a minute to relax), a business center for onsite printing and scanning and a bag valet where she can check a gym bag or luggage for up to 24 hours at a time!
We also recently partnered with ClassPass, so their members can actually book blowouts with us via their ClassPass membership. It’s a good synergy as fitness has been a big part of GLAM+GO’s DNA. Next, we’re opening a GLAM+GO location in Washington, DC, a new city for us.
How do you chose the locations?
It’s a mixture of finding the right partners where we can bring value, and feedback from our members and clients as to where they need us most. We have a “suggest a location” section of our website, which has really helped us to identify new opportunities.
How do you select your stylists?
Our head of NY operations and lead stylist Samantha Sheppard does an incredible job of hiring. We then have a lead team that handles training. It’s a big honor in the company to bring in and onboard our future team members and we treat it as such. We also strive to make GLAM+GO the best place not only to visit, but to work, which has made all the difference. I’d say more than half of new hires come from internal referral.
How would GLAM + GO suit the businesswoman who travels often?
GLAM+GO is ideal for the businesswoman who travels often! Our services are all about efficiency, so she knows that whether she’s getting a blowout in Miami, Santa Monica or NYC, she’ll be in and out in 30 minutes or less. Our memberships also transfer between all locations, so we have a fair number of members who are back and forth between coasts that take advantage of our services as they travel. We also specifically seek to partner with fitness centers and hotels, so there’s that built in convenience factor.
Which GLAM + GO service is the most popular?
Our Signature Blowout, which is our version of the wash + blow dry service, is our most popular. Depending on hair length, most women can count on this service taking 30 minutes or less.
What are your top tips for launching a startup?
Being patient as mentioned above. Launching a start up is also a lot like telling a joke. You have a premise and an idea of the joke you want to tell. Then, you tell it. You communicate your idea to the outside world and wait to gauge a reaction. In humor, its relatively binary – either someone laughs or they don’t, whereas business can be more subtle with less immediate gratification. My top tip would be just to persevere and try and get your vision out there, pay attention, gauge the reaction, be patient and keep going from there. The only thing worse than failing is never trying at all!
Photography courtesy of Andrew Werner and GLAM + GO