Thursday 22 October 2015

2Inspire Men's special profile Interview: Derek DeCutter Clement

Derek Decutter Clement is an experienced Hairdresser, author of ten novels and Architect of a nutritional product line. From his inception Derek has been commuted to the health of black hair and overall development of the industry,his journey began with an apprenticeship at the renowned Splinters London Mayfair and thereafter he became artistic director a testament of his dedication and expertise.

After owning a strings of salons in the UK, Decutter returned to his birthplace, Grenada, in an attempt to utilise the islands resources. While there he consulted with many of the Caribbean most reputable figures in medicine, education, law, and politics forming long lasting contact,armed with this knowledge and an organic base for his impending product line, Decutter traveled to New York where he penned ten novels. Read his inspirational profile interview below.

Please tell us what is a typical business day for you?
A typical business day at the salon..
From the moment I open the salon I go into over drive since clients are usually booked days in advance. 
I hate starting my day with no clients.
I live breathe and dream hair, that is making my clients feel the best they can be..and empowered.

What made you start the business and what steps did you take to start operating as a business?
What made me start hairdressing in the first place was quite odd. I always tell people I didn't find hairdressing it found me, life as a black boy in the 70s was daunting to say the least.
I figured since institutional racism showed it's ugly head in the school system, my youthful mind told me clearly so will it be in cooperate UK. One day while sitting at Splinters international hair  salon in Mayfair waiting  for my girlfriend, overwhelmed with the fact that it was a black business I immediately ask for a job. Needless to say the following day I started my apprenticeship.

After five years having rose to the top of my field I collaborated with two other  liked minded black friends a Banker and an Accountant we opened the upscale Derek Clement salon in maid a Vale. 

What would you say has been your greatest accomplishment in the business world to date?
My greatest accomplishment in the business to date has got to be, besides being nominated as the first top Afro hairstylist of the year in 1980s, is owning my own Product line.

What has been your biggest challenge in business so far?
My Biggest challenge happened in March 14th 2014 2am in the morning at my cousins birthday party I had a phone call to say that my salon was on fire, the next day I was homeless and jobless.

What are your future plans for the business?
Future plans will be to open a one stop shopping salon for men and women of colour. A brand with Academy salon product and restaurant under one roof.

If you had to do it all over again, what would you do differently?
If I had to do it again I would have purchased a high street property in the 1980s and not waste all that money in a house in suburbia and paying rent on the I'm high streets.

What’s the best compliment you could receive in business?
Best compliment could receive in the business is when a white women ask for her hair to be cut like her black Friend. This happened to me on New York while working on Lexxington Avenue Manhattan in the cooperate environment I did many sisters hair with amazing haircuts and their white friends would come for cuts too having seen theirs.

Why is it so important to inspire the next generation  to follow their dreams?
Somebody showed me the way therefore it is incumbent that I pass on the skill relevant to empower future black boys and girls with their woes and quandaries. 

What advice would you give to somebody who wants to start a business in your industry?
I am always giving sharing and coaching the young and my advice to the young and coming hair dresses is to start their line if products asap.

What or who inspires you in business and why?
Winston Isaacs was and still is my biggest inspiration. He was humble giving and patient, he aimed high and continued to seek knowledge above all he began what is today, the highest level of black hair we can imagine in the UK AND The cutting of Afro hair that demonstrated  balance movement and Shape.

What is your favourite inspirational quote?
Power In Your Hair Cut, Good health = Healthy Hair And HAIR GROWS AT A CELLULAR LEVEL.

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