Updated: Mar 31
Today we have with us Angel Green, owner of Chic Vibes Salon in Clearwater.
The biggest challenge was the transition to what we consider business owner. So, what I mean by that is going from booth renter, commission, where everything was comfortable, being made to take that push into actual business owner, entrepreneur, figuring out how to maneuver in a business world that I knew nothing about. So I think that was the biggest challenge for me.
Tracy Carter: Today we have with us Angel Green, owner of Chic Vibes Salon in Clearwater. We are so excited and privileged to have you here with us and have your business in the spotlight of Empowherment’s first monthly newsletter. We can't wait to share with the rest of the community what an amazing woman and business owner you are.
Angel Green: Thank you. Thank you.
TC: So tell me, what drew you to doing the work that you do?
AG: Honestly, my sister has done hair since she was out of high school, probably 40 plus years. So, I can remember going to work with her when she was doing my hair and then just hanging around the salon. So I've always watched her and enjoyed watching her, and I think that's where it came from.
TC: Very good. So you had your sister to look up to.
TC: Awesome, and how did you get started? How did you go about getting started?
AG: So it's funny because I actually applied at PTEC. I went to PTEC to apply for culinary, and I said, I'll get on, they both had a waiting list. So at this point I took either or, whichever was the shortest. So I got on the waiting list for both, and I went back to work and someone called me and said, someone paid your deposit for the cosmetology program. I was like, oh. They were like, so you start in August. I was like, oh, OK. So that's how it fell in my lap. So I had to make a decision because I just started working at the sheriff's department. So I had to make a decision then. Do I leave here, go to school, find something part time, how is that going to work? So that's what I did. I worked part time at R’club, went to school during the day at PTEC. I did one year. I pushed! My teacher, supported me. I pushed one year and challenged the board and I was able to pass, thank God, and start working in September the next year.
TC: That sounds like it was meant to be.
AG: Absolutely, absolutely.
TC: Can you describe for me a challenge that you have had to face and overcome as a business owner?
AG: Oh, I want to say, of course, the ideal would say it would be COVID, the closure during Covid, but honestly, thinking about this question, the biggest challenge was the transition to what we consider business owner. So, what I mean by that is going from booth renter, commission, where everything was comfortable, being made to take that push into actual business owner, entrepreneur, figuring out how to maneuver in a business world that I knew nothing about. So I think that was the biggest challenge for me.
TC: But it sounds like you overcame that challenge very well because your business is thriving.
AG: It is, and I'm so thankful for it. It’s just the blessings of God that that's the only way this business is thriving because, I mean, I don't consider myself some grand hairstylist. I love what I do, and I pride myself in taking care of my clients’ hair, but God has just blessed it amazingly, because I look back where I started and I had no clue where I was going to go when I got out of school, like where I'm going to work, and I would have never imagined I'd be here.
TC: I love it, a woman with your talent who’s very humble.
AG: It’s the truth. Chuckles
TC: I love it. What is your favorite part about doing the work that you do?
AG: Seeing my clients, after they absolutely love their hair, the reactions in the mirror, the slinging of the hair, just the way they feel, you know , just the way it makes them feel.
TC: Awesome. And what are three words that you would use to describe your business?
AG: So I thought about this, and I think three words would be unpredictable. You never know what's going to come through the door or what's going to sit in the chair. Eventful, lots of things happen, and evolving because the industry is always evolving, so you have to stay current, you have to stay educated.
TC: Excellent, and have to be able to adapt with the changes that come along with the industry.
TC: And what is a quote or motto that you live by that might inspire hope in others?
AG: So in doing some research for something, when we were in the Tampa Bay Black Business C.A.T.C.H. program, I came across this quote, and it sticks in my mind. “If you dare to struggle, you dare to win”.
TC: Wow! That is powerful.
AG: Absolutely, because it makes me think back like all the struggle, all the struggle, and you see the payoff.
TC: All the work and effort that you put in and things that you work through,
you can see the results of that. You see the fruit of it now.
AG: Exactly. So now when it's like there's a struggle, it's like, ok, just push through it. There's something on the opposite side of this.
TC: That's good. That is good. That's a great message for other business owners or even potential business owners to have, to know that there will be some struggles, but you can come out on the other side and come out strong like you have.
TC: And what advice do you have for women who are interested in pursuing entrepreneurship?
AG: I would say, know your path. Know your passion. Know what it is that you're searching for or you're looking to dive into. Pray about it and make sure we're not acting out of feelings at that moment because it's easy to get caught up into what you may see around you. But if it’s your passion, you have to pray on it, and you have to stay strong, and you have to push through it and just go for it and look at the support systems that are around you.
TC: That's actually very great advice because I think people can be a lot more successful if they are doing something that they are passionate about and something else that stands out that you said is just having that support system, which is also very important, having people that you can go through, to help you get through the challenges and also be there to celebrate the successes.
AG: Absolutely, because even though it's what you love, it's what I love, that does not mean everyday I'm so overjoyed with it. You know, there are those days, it's called life, but if I look at it and say would I close and do something else? Absolutely not, but you just have to press through those moments, and you need those people that will either listen to you or help, you know, just cheer you on.
TC: Great advice. How do you persevere in the face of hardship, more specifically with Covid-19 hitting small businesses hard last year? What kept you going?
AG: During that particular time, it was very unsettling because it was something I had never known before, not working. So it changed a lot for me in a lot of different areas in that it forced me to look at my status in my home as to how I depend or wasn’t depending upon or wasn't leaning on my husband. So that changed that. That got me through that tremendously. My daughter getting through, and just being that that small time that I had being closed, because some businesses were closed longer, God bless them, being able to be there for her to watch the baby. So that was on the upside, you know, so and without them being there to push me through it and to say, you know, hey, this is going to be OK. And the connection that I have with my clients, still checking in with them to see how they were doing and giving them some tips to get through hair care at that particular time, because we think about it as a superficial thing, but it's not you know. It's something that you need to take care of. It's a part of your body, and some of my clients, they had no idea what to do. So, just that they felt that connection that I was reaching out to them just to say, hey, do this, do that. You know, we'll walk through this together. So those moments brought me through it and so it was easier to bite the bullet and say, OK, we just pray this is not going to be a long time…
AG: …to be back at it. Yes.
TC: Right. And definitely you staying engaged with your family, and staying engaged with their clients probably helped a lot as well.
TC: I know that they missed you.
AG: Yes. Because when we reopened, they were like “What do we need to do? I need an appointment.” So, I'm so thankful for that because it would h