I was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. I know many who envy that fact. To me, it is irrelevant. I was born a restless soul, and I don't believe that where I was raised had anything to do with it. I've always wanted to see and experience more than my surroundings could give me. I finished high school, enrolled at the local college, and moved from home at 17. After a semester of college I dropped out. It was too financially difficult to make rent, and pay for college.
I had always felt that education was the key to unlocking doors. I knew I had to earn a better living in order to work my way through college. Hairdressing became that venue. It was by a mere whim, an impulse which took me down that particular path. After seeing an ad on a wall for a cosmetology school, in Hollywood, I spoke with the Dean and immediately enrolled. I was luck that I qualified for a government grant because I hadn't thought about how I was going to pay! After completing the nine month course, I did work my way through college. It was a great accomplishment yet I was still unsatisfied. I wanted more. I wanted the world. Ok, maybe not to conquer the world, but at least see some of it. I set out to work my way though several countries as a way of seeing this world.
It was around this time that I met a young guy, who had done what I was about to do. He gave me some pointers. He had worked his way around Europe for several years. Using his techniques, and some of my own, I eventually worked my way through several countries. At times I was poorer than you can imagine, at other times I was earning a decent living. I did whatever work I would find, but always tried to make my way into a salon. As I worked in various salons I experienced many different management styles. Some were fantastic, and many more were pathetic.
One day, I had a dream. Maybe not as noble or grandiose as the one Dr. Martin Luther King had, but it was a dream none the less. I had a dream that I would someday open my own salon. This is not an unusual dream for overworked under paid hairdressers to have. I'm sure there are thousands at any given moment having this dream all over this planet! Aside from the fact that this was my dream, and not someone else's, it was brilliant! At this point I have to boast since I seldom have anything that could be considered a brilliant thought. I envisioned a unique place for guys to get their haircut. Not a barber shop. Not a hair salon. I would open a place where I would put the "customer" back into "customer service". I wanted the person sitting in my chair to feel like a friend rather than a number. I knew it was time to put away the bohemian lifestyle and plant my feet on terra firma.
Where would I begin? How do you implement such a plan? Simply put, "one step at a time". I needed to find a place where I could cut costs by renting space in an existing salon. I needed a place where I could test my theories and perfect them. I found this spot at Hair in Shape.
I started to work at Hair in Shape, as an independent contractor, in January 2007. I had some setbacks from the very start. It was at this time that I lost my mother to cancer. And two weeks later I ended a long term relationship. But, life moves on. Now I needed a name for my business. I had years earlier started cutting some kids hair who jokingly referred to me as Uncle Aaron. That name sounded good to me.
That was just the beginning. I don't want to disclose too much information about the future. I feel like J.K. Rawling must have when she was writing the last book in her series. I will share with you this much. My travels and observations have allowed me to see and experience great things. No brag, just fact. I have tried to congeal my positive business experiences into a workable system. I have been developing a new way for doing business. This system should create a win-win platform for business owners, employees, and customers. I call it systeme plus (sees-tem ploose). So, what is in store for the future? I intend to build Uncle Aarons by incorporating systeme plus (sees-tem ploose) into its business structure from the very start. Now imagine this. Imagine a world where we do not live nor think "in the box", neither do we live nor think "outside the box". Imagine a world where our actions are not defined by our relationship to "the box". This is the essence of systeme plus, "the world where there is no box".
Ahhhh, ain't life grand? July 6th, 2008 is the day I opened my own place. I've been wanting to find a location on this very block for two years, and here I am today! Amazing. Anyway Uncle Aarons is no longer a dream, but a reality. I hope you will stop by and visit if you haven't already. The door is almost always open. You can see the pictures if you follow the "album" link.