A DAY OF CAREERS INSPIRATION FROM LEADING CREATIVE AND FORMER APPRENTICE
Students in Years 11, 12 and 13 were privileged to attend workshops and presentations with Mark Woolley, alumnus and founder and international director of leading British hair brand Electric.
Year 13 students enjoyed an assembly with Mark who gave them an insight into how his career into the creative industry started at Richmond School following a careers seminar hosted in the sixth form hall. A representative from Saks, a local and prominent hairdresser that operated a franchise business model with salons across the country, impressed Mark with their ethos and creativity, and he made the decision to go into hairdressing. Mark took up the opportunity to begin his careers as an apprentice at Saks in Darlington and he quickly knew that he had made the right decision. He moved to London where his company Electric was born and this has evolved to become one of the leading hair styling and creative specialists in the industry.
As well as operating a number of salons in key cities in the UK and overseas, Mark has developed his own range of hair products which are sold in other premium hair salons worldwide and outlets such as Harvey Nichols. The brand is also synonymous with fashion and Mark and his team are regularly on location at international fashion shows. Electric’s HQ is near Brighton and as well as being home to Mark and his family is also where he not only grows some of the ingredients for his hair products but is where his main photographic studio is located for media photoshoots. Mark’s clients include Sienna Miller, Noel Gallagher, Paloma Faith and Billie Eilish.
Mark spent the day with groups of students including those in Year 11 and Year 12 studying Business Studies where he went into more detail about his business philosophy, his focus on developing the Electric brand and keeping it fresh and exciting. He also had a workshop with students who are interested in a career in the hair, beauty and creative industries, passing on his expert knowledge and doing a Q and A with the group.
Mark said: “You don’t realise the impact your teachers have on you sometimes until years after you’ve left school and you think ‘wow they were amazing’. They subtly taught me quite a few things about life and it taught me to build my brand with the same philosophy as we believe strongly in teaching the next generation and making other people successful. We want Electric to feel like a family, not a company. We want to feel like if somebody joins us we are responsible for their career so we are going to train them really well.”
His final words of advice for students when considering their career pathways were:
- Find something that you love
- Find the best people to learn from
- Set clear goals and objectives
- Work hard
- Pass on knowledge and teach others
- Have a good time
Ruth Hamer, Careers Adviser, concluded: “We cannot thank Mark enough for taking time out of his incredibly busy schedule once again to share his experiences and expertise with our students. The passion he has for the creative industries and his dedication to his brand and employees is tremendous; our students were really inspired by his drive and ambition and how much he is giving back in terms of education and training in his sector, and also by returning to school to run these careers workshops.”