Like most girls, Faye Bailey enjoyed styling hair. By the time the Macon, GA native reached the age of 14, however, she took her childhood pastime more seriously. "I was braiding and pressing hair and I knew that I wanted to eventually open a salon," she says. Convincing her mother, a teacher who had 11 other children who were college graduates, however, was a battle. Five years later, her mother won. Bailey enrolled in Mercer University's Stetson School of Business and Economics studying Business Administration. Nevertheless, the call to do hair was too loud.
After her second year at college, Bailey relocated to Florida, studied at Wilfred Beauty and got married. Then she had two children and worked for Southern Bell for five years before opening her first salon, All Dolled Up and getting her Bachelors of Cosmetology from Dudley's University in North Carolina.
Nineteen years later, she is the owner of two multicultural salons: All Dolled Up Salons I and II in FT Lauderdale and Deerfield, FL respectively and is a sought-after stylist and colonist who has produced noteworthy hair shows in the Ft. Lauderdale area for the past four years. Her shows provide a showcase for local stylists to display there creations while raising money for the community's social causes.
"We call ourselves a team," says The soft spoken Bailey, referring to her tight-knit group of stylists. "The shows are actual productions with dancing, competitions and skits, plus a full-course dinner for attendees. About three to four hundred people attend. We allocate a portion of our profits for a scholarship to a high school student, and we have also given money to the African-American Research Library that's being built here."
That's not all. Bailey has big plans, come next year: All Dolled Up's Ft. Lauderdale location will expand its services to offer spa treatments. Then there are her plans to open two more salons--one in Miami and another in West Palm Beach--plus develop a franchise chain of her salons. Yet instead of taking all the credit, Bailey attributes her success to her husband, children, God and her staff.
Community involvement is not her only measure of success, however. Known for molding and shaping the careers of young stylists, Bailey offers her staff incentives to help them grow while servicing clients properly. She also provides easy access to financial service companies, gives her staff discounts on seminars and teaches monthly educational clinics.
"My main objective is to build every stylist that works at my salon," explains the 37-year-old Bailey." They all work for a commission and I like to have everyone on one accord. Most of my staff consists of young women and men who have watched me over the years and decided to come on board. I have one stylist who has been with me for four years. He used to wash my car. Then he saw what being a stylist could do for him and enrolled in beauty school. I start all my new stylists out shampooing while I train them. Clients then can become familiar with their faces. Then I wean them on clients from my clientele base and pay them until they build up a strong list. My main rule of thumb withthem, however, is that they maintain the same professional image and respect for the salon. My motto is to give the customers the best they can receive because they come to us to be pampered. If they cannot follow along with those stipulations, then this is not the salon for them."
While she has held steadfast to her convictions, over the years it hasn't been easy. "I've always had control over the business aspect of running a Salon, But my biggest challenge has been trying to build a team," she admits." I had to learn how to maintain an atmosphere that is warm, friendly, yet still professional for my staff. This made it easier to have all the stylists focus on being a team because without a team effort, it will not work.