In this feature series, I briefly introduce some fabulous entrepreneurial ladies – a fun snapshot of the lady behind the business.
Gill Barr Freelance
MEET GILLIAN MCGOURAN – DUBLIN
Describe your business in 25 words or less
Freelance professional hairdressing and spray tanning service in the comfort of your own home, business or hotel.
Do you remember your first client?
My very first client was in my rented bedroom in Harold’s Cross as I didn’t drive at the time. Not the most professional – we had to use my tiny en-suite to wash the colour out but she left with a hair cut and colour she was delighted with and a smile.
I still do her hair to this day 13 years later – time flies when you’re having fun!
As a home business, where’s the strangest place you’ve taken a work call?
Due to the nature of my job it’s hard to take calls when I’m working so most people communicate through social media sites or WhatsApp so I’ve never really taken a call in a weird place.
But I can certainly say the strangest place I’ve ever worked. A few years ago I did a bit of work for Remington and worked along with them at the ploughing championships! First time ever I wore wellies to work and did hair in the middle of a field! Very random but fun all the same!
What would you say is the worst idea you’ve ever had when it comes to your business?
Probably trying to branch out into doing nails as well. As I wasn’t doing nails all the time or doing back to back appointments in a salon I was very slow, so I ended up paying a lot of money for a course I never really put into practice.
Like everything in the hair and beauty industry, there is no fast track way to learn anything. You need to do an apprenticeship and gain experience to master your trade with no shortcuts!
What‘s your favourite part of your working day?
Being creative and catching up with clients who have now become friends. Also, doing weddings and experiencing the morning buzz with the full bridal party.
How about your least favourite?
Being stuck in traffic between appointments!
Where did you grow up?
Stirling in Bonnie Scotland
What was your first ever job?
Delivering papers. I think I was 12 or 13 when I got my first paper round and I used to love if you got leaflets to fold in the papers as you got paid more!
Sometimes my friend Emma would share the round with me but I always felt torn as it took less time but meant you only got paid half of an already measly wage !
Haha! Hustling at a young age!
Tell us one interesting thing about you that most people may not know.
I secretly fancy Philip schofield! Is that interesting?!!!! My guilty pleasure is #thismorning
Ooooo and I’m a neat freak!
What would be your karaoke song of choice?
I don’t have a note in my head so I need something you can talk rather than sing so maybe “Ironic” by Alanis Morissette!
Facebook: Gill Barr Freelance
Gill was my hairdresser for years before I moved to Hong Kong and when I moved back last month she was one of the first people I messaged to get back on her client list!
When I was home on maternity leave with my two girls, Gill was a lifesaver – I was able to get my hair done at home in my pyjamas while breastfeeding my baby and looking after a toddler at the same time. You couldn’t do that in a salon – well maybe you could but you might not be welcomed back a second time! She is a very lovely bubbly lady and I used to look forward to a real natter, keeping my baby brain connected to the outside world!
So ladies, if Gill can do it, so can you. If you have always wanted to run your own business – Go for It, take that next step!
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Thank you x