Leave it in the hands of a professional… or the story of my first straight razor shave

I’ve always wanted a straight razor shave. I’m not sure why. Maybe I wanted to experience the old-time barber shop days, or maybe it’s just cool, but it’s always intrigued me. Well, I finally received one and it taught me something.

The Close Shave

First, before the lesson I learned, I should tell you about my shave. It was enjoyable and a bit odd. You have someone else with a razor sharp blade at your throat…let’s just say, Sweeney Todd kept running through my head. But it is a close shave. My skin has never been smoother and it took two days for whiskers to reappear. 

Gia at Hello Gorgeous in Voorhees is the expert with the razor (yes, I get my haircut at some place called Hello Gorgeous, go ahead yuk it up). Apparently, she learned the skill at some salon in Philadelphia, and now offers it and trains others at the salon in Voorhees. It’s one of the many services they offer now. Normally, it’s just a haircut for me, but when she mentioned they now offered straight razor shaves…I knew my opportunity had finally arrived. And at my next cut, I asked if I could book her for the shave as well. Fortunately, there was time. And as I said, it was a unique experience. Complete with the hot towels and ointments and such.

It’s definitely something to experience. I’ll probably schedule it again if I’ve got a snazzy affair to go to that day or the next - it’s a great shave. And since I hate shaving, why not leave it to someone else who can do it better than me when I want to look my best?

Now to the lesson learned

As I said, while I sat there with a sharp blade at my neck, a few thoughts ran through my head. Sweeney Todd, Old Westerns I’d watched when younger, and of course Bugs Bunny. But what I also thought of was how this process translated to my world ñ that is, marketing and design.

Here I was, sitting in a chair, having someone else expertly do something I’m fully capable of doing myself. I do it at least weekly and I had always believed I was getting a pretty good shave. But it turned out she did it better. Why? Because she was focused on accomplishing a goal (a great shave) and because she’s an expert wielding the tools of her trade with skill and experience.

And that’s when I realized… that’s what we do. We’re marketing and design experts that concentrate on accomplishing the goals outlined to us. With razor focus we apply our knowledge, talents, and experience to solve a problem. Sure, any business or internal marketing department can do the same thing, but then again, I thought I was getting a close shave when I was using my own razor. But when I put my faith (and face) in the hands of an expert, I got a much better outcome; it was a superior result.

So I guess the next time I’m chatting with a prospect or a colleague and they defer my sales pitch with “we have someone that does that or we have a marketing department” they’ll most likely recieve my straight razor shave story. So I’ll need to polish it up and make it a bit more pithy…but I guess that’s something to think about during my next shave.

May 28, 2009

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