Whether they'd like to be behind the scenes at fashion week or in the corner office of the LVMH headquarters, a lot of people covet careers in beauty. While these jobs may sound like dreams come true, it's tough to know where to start when you're new to the industry.
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One way to get going is with a career path you've never considered before.
If you've ever taken a weekend stroll through your local Nordstrom's or Saks, you've definitely made your way through their sprawling floors filled with beauty and fragrance displays. What you may not be aware of is just how all of these counters are staffed. The biggest secret in the beauty industry lies behind those counters. These beauty advisors, counter managers, and makeup artists all act as sales specialists on behalf of top cosmetics brands, and the beauty retail industry can offer a career path straight from the counter to the boardroom or business ownership. In fact, famous faces like Bobbi Brown and Lisa Eldridge started out on the sales floor.
What makes this retail force uniquely qualified to break into top-tier beauty jobs?
They Learn the Industry Inside and Out
The customer experience is where the brand comes to life and the sale is won or lost. There's no better way to learn everything there is to know about cosmetic products and cosmetics customers than by becoming a beauty advisor. Plus, beauty advisors are offered many classes and training sessions that provide them with stepping stones to promotions.
The Power of Personality
Rather than sitting at desks and speaking to the same people every day, beauty counter staff get to interact with customers directly. This gives them the chance to develop new skills that can be invaluable when it comes time to make that career jump.
Flexibility = Opportunity
Almost every high-end retail store needs beauty advisors, and many of those beauty advisors are freelancers. That means they get to choose their own hours and work where they want, when they want. This type of flexibility can allow beauty advisors to perfect their crafts and grow their portfolios more quickly than traditional jobs would allow. This, in turn, opens up more opportunity.
An easy way to get started in the beauty industry is to visit the websites for brands you love. Look for their career sections and apply to interesting openings. Another good way is to talk to the beauty advisors themselves. Ask for their managers' contact information. Most good managers are always on the lookout for talented people who are passionate about their brands. And, finally, you may want to check out online talent-matching platforms that allow you to interact with beauty brands directly.
Glenn Laumeister is the CEO of AllWork, a talent-matching platform for brands and retailers.