Passion, pampering, & "living the dream" – Life as a BarberShopCo Store Owner
BarberShopCo Franchise Ownership Success
Al Moseley is, first and foremost, a family man. Together with his wife, Tracie, they share three beautiful children – seven-year-old Xander, four-year-old Xavier, and their precious newborn, Amaya. And while these days, you might find Al bustling around Howick's BarberShopCo store or giving back to his local community – it wasn't always the case. "I was with Air New Zealand for almost 20 years before opening a BarberShopCo store," says Al, "I've held several roles from customer service agent, on-job trainer, team manager, cabin crew development manager, to international and domestic training team – where I facilitated technical and soft skill training."
After nearly two decades with the same company, Al decided he needed to do something for himself, choosing to focus on his passion. "I kept asking, 'what is my real passion' says Al, "and to be honest, it was gents looking their best and having an experience that was second to none. So, I asked myself, 'why can't gents get pampered and receive the same experience as their partners? A world-class experience that leaves them walking out the door feeling, looking, and smelling amazing?'”
As luck would have it, a good friend of Al and Tracie had just opened a BarberShopCo store at the time Al was considering a change. "He wasn't a barber, and he told us he'd just opened a barbershop with BarberShopCo. I was envious because I knew the brand and loved it! I couldn't wait to talk with Adam (BarberShopCo CEO) to discuss a potential owner/operator opportunity in Howick."
But Al's sea change wasn't all smooth sailing. "When we finally decided to go for it, there were a few challenges along the way – not only in trying to find the perfect premises but with the addition of COVID and material shortages. We were initially supposed to open in October 2021, which got delayed by the pandemic, but I was so proud of the team we had helping us along the way. The fit-out was incredible, and my dream to bring this amazing brand to my local community became a reality on the 3rd of March 2022."
So, what did the community think of Al's barbershop dream? "We've had an overwhelming response from the community. The support Howick has given us has been unbelievable. It even stretches out to local communities like Pakurange, Botany, and Cocklebay. We've sponsored local schools and businesses to give something back to the community – which is really rewarding. The other day, I was wearing my BarberShopCo hat at the supermarket, and a gentleman yelled, 'I love your shop and the team! Are you open today?' I loved it!"
While having several other barbershops in the local area keeps Al on his toes, he's not overly concerned. "We just make sure we are delivering the great service we promise and that we are consistent," says Al, "being a local also makes a difference as people recognise our brand and me – we are providing something special out East!".
Now that Al is fully ensconced in his role, he has room for hindsight. So, what are some of the challenges when operating a barbershop? "Getting barbers that have experience but, more importantly, have the personality, and exceptional customer service can be challenging," says Al, "but I feel we have got there and are attracting some amazing barbers. Operating a 7-day-a-week business and being there as much as possible is also a juggle, but seeing the customers' happy makes it worth it."
And the upside? "Living the dream of not only being part of an incredible brand and family," says Al, "but seeing our customers return and leave with more confidence because they look great is my favourite part of the job. I've been to more barbershops than I can count over the years, and I've never really been happy with what was delivered. So, I concluded that it's about excellent service, a super-clean shop, an amazing atmosphere, and great barbers that can give quality haircuts every time. I think we've achieved this."
See Al and his team in action at 98 Picton Street, Howick!
Interested in Owning a BarberShopCo? See here for more information!