Tuesday 24 April 2018

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Cork Independent

Cork Profile

Ciara Wilson, Salon Shop owner & Network Cork President

Thursday, 27th April, 2017 1:00am

Name: Ciara Wilson

Age: 41

Lives: Bandon, West Cork

Family: My partner Aidan, my son Mark, stepdaughters Roisin and Kelsey

Pets: Two dogs, Mr Tucker Norris and his wife Crumbs

Favourite thing about Cork: I love the city, I went to school in the city and always loved the buzz. Looking back, I am surprised I stayed in Inchydoney for so long. I love the buildings in the city, especially the older ones, the art and architecture.

Least favourite thing about Cork: That Cork Airport doesn’t have more flight routes.

One thing you’d change about Cork: Improve the airport so we can travel to more areas. I hate driving past Cork Airport to travel to Dublin so we can fly out to more destinations.

 

 

When you were small, what did you want to be as a grown-up?

I wanted to do something that made people happy, I love to see people smile and know I had a influence in changing their moods.

 

Tell us about your career progression to your role today

When I was in my teens, I got to travel with Cara O’Sullivan, the opera singer, to her different events. I was her company, as such.

In return, I got to watch the hair and makeup artists work their magic. I fell in love with the industry then.

I did Beauty Therapy in the College of Commerce and worked in a beauty supply company. At 19, I opened my first salon in French Church Street Cork. with the help of my dad, (I think he assisted me to slow down my social life!). I worked six days a week for over two years before I even took a holiday. I was studious and poured my heart and soul into the salon because I wanted to be successful.

After four years, I moved to another premises just outside the city by the South Infirmary.

In 2003, I was ready to grow again, big spa-like salons were trending, but I needed the experience of managing a team – so I decided to go work in a spa and learn how to be a manager,

I started in Inchydoney Spa as assistant manager and in-house trainer for their skincare brand Elemis and spa therapies, and within two years, I was managing a team of 52 staff at the spa.

I loved it there so much, I stayed nearly eight years. I loved learning all about holistic therapies.

I left in 2011 because the city was calling me and I joined Therapy Laser Clinic on Opera Lane for a year.

In 2012, we opened Salon Shop Cork; the aim was to create employment for myself. We didn’t envision back then that we would grow so fast and during a recession. We now currently have over 20 staff between the two branches.

Shortly after opening our second branch, I became a member of Network Cork and I haven’t looked back.

 

What is the most enjoyable aspect of what you do?

I love working with people, we endeavour to go the extra mile for our customers and they appreciate it.

I also enjoy watching a staff member develop and learn new skills. Of course, I love products, the science behind them,and the results you can achieve by using them.

 

What motivates you?

Doing a job well, watching our company grow and achieve results.

 

What advice would you give your 15 year old self?

Do not be afraid to take the risk, it will pay off. Mistakes are good for the soul because you can reflect and grow.

 

If you weren’t in the job you have, what would you be doing?

In another life, I do think I could be in the medical industry, healing people,

 

What is your greatest life or career achievement to-date?

Watching the kids grow up and seeing the world in their eyes. We always encourage them to be the best version they can be of themselves.

 

Who has had the biggest influence on you in your life?

The person that inspired me would be my dad. He is a very hard-working man, he taught me to keep going, keep your head high and drive on. I never wanted to fail because I would be leaving him down.

 

What is the life dream now?

Retire by 50 and travel the world in a campervan.

 

How do you switch off?

Two years ago, we didn’t ever switch off; but after a trip of a lifetime to Australia where we rented a camper to travel around, we enjoyed it so much that we decided to get one at home. So, nearly every weekend from April to October, we head off on a Friday evening and travel Ireland.

We have two-thirds of the wild Atlantic Way done; this year, we will go from Mayo to Belfast. Our two dogs hop in and away we go, we get to go to the festivals in style!

 

What is your favourite Cork memory?

Being in Vernon Mount House with my Dad. He would race bikes and I would be his assistant. He would come in off the track covered in mud and I remember the smell of the mud, along with the adrenalin rush, because it was more than likely he had won the race.

 

What’s your favourite place in Cork?

I love Rosscarbery, my dad’s family are from there and we grew up going down there every summer. My grandparents, aunts, uncles, siblings and cousins would spend the carefree summers in the area. I love going back.

 

Do you have a favourite quote or motto?

Those who dream, achieve!

 

When are you at your happiest?

I am at my happiest when Aidan, myself and the three kids are sitting around the kitchen table, having a meal and chatting. It doesn’t happen enough but when it does, we could be chatting for hours, all their personalities come out and we always laugh. We have a rule – first person to use their phone has to clean up after dinner.

 

Any regrets?

Nothing I let myself worry about. Life’s too short for regrets.

 

What is your hidden talent?

I love to teach, I am a qualified teacher and love passing knowledge onto people and watch them grow. But my main hidden talent is that I am always lucky when it comes to parking my car. I always find a space, so much so I nearly always end up driving.

 

What might we be surprised to know about you?

I was born in Dublin and I had a caul over my face. This is supposed to be very lucky for a baby to be born with it. An old wives’ tale says I will never die in water. I love the sea and water!

 

Anything else you’d like to share with us?

I try to learn a new skill every year. Last year, I learnt how to run. The year before, I learnt how to swim. This year, I have just returned from a week’s bootcamp with Kathryn Thomas in Parknasilla, Co Kerry. It was a seven-day camp where we learned about how to nourish the body and exercised for up to eight hours of the day.

We were pushed to our limits from 7am to 6pm. I learnt the benefit of having naps during our breaks. It was physically and mentally challenging and by the end of the week, I improved on both.

The sense of achievement at the end of the week was empowering. I felt I could do anything I set my mind to and when I returned to work, I felt I had enjoyed a real break.

 

When you were small, what did you want to be as a grown-up?

I wanted to do something that made people happy, I love to see people smile and know I had a influence in changing their moods.

 

Tell us about your career progression to your role today

When I was in my teens, I got to travel with Cara O’Sullivan, the opera singer, to her different events. I was her company, as such.

In return, I got to watch the hair and makeup artists work their magic. I fell in love with the industry then.

I did Beauty Therapy in the College of Commerce and worked in a beauty supply company. At 19, I opened my first salon in French Church Street Cork. with the help of my dad – I think he assisted me to slow down my social life! I worked six days a week for over two years before I even took a holiday. I was studious and poured my heart and soul into the salon because I wanted to be successful.

After four years, I moved to another premises just outside the city by the South Infirmary.

In 2003, I was ready to grow again, big spa-like salons were trending, but I needed the experience of managing a team – so I decided to go work in a spa and learn how to be a manager,

I started in Inchydoney Spa as assistant manager and in-house trainer for their skincare brand Elemis and spa therapies, and within two years, I was managing a team of 52 staff at the spa. I loved it there so much, I stayed nearly eight years. I loved learning all about holistic therapies.

I left in 2011 because the city was calling me and I joined Therapy Laser Clinic on Opera Lane for a year.

In 2012, we opened Salon Shop Cork; the aim was to create employment for myself. We didn’t envision back then that we would grow so fast and during a recession. We now currently have over 20 staff between the two branches.

Shortly after opening our second branch, I became a member of Network Cork and I haven’t looked back.

 

What is the most enjoyable aspect of what you do?

I love working with people, we endeavour to go the extra mile for our customers and they appreciate it.

I also enjoy watching a staff member develop and learn new skills. Of course, I love products, the science behind them and the results you can achieve by using them.

 

What motivates you?

Doing a job well, watching our company grow and achieve results.

 

What advice would you give your 15 year old self?

Do not be afraid to take the risk, it will pay off. Mistakes are good for the soul because you can reflect and grow.

 

If you weren’t in the job you have, what would you be doing?

In another life, I do think I could be in the medical industry, healing people.

 

What is your greatest life or career achievement to-date?

Watching the kids grow up and seeing the world in their eyes. We always encourage them to be the best version they can be of themselves.

 

Who has had the biggest influence on you in your life?

The person that inspired me would be my dad. He is a very hard-working man, he taught me to keep going, keep your head high and drive on. I never wanted to fail because I would be leaving him down.

 

What is the life dream now?

Retire by 50 and travel the world in a campervan.

 

How do you switch off?

Two years ago, we didn’t ever switch off; but after a trip of a lifetime to Australia where we rented a camper to travel around, we enjoyed it so much that we decided to get one at home. So, nearly every weekend from April to October, we head off on a Friday evening and travel Ireland.

We have two-thirds of the wild Atlantic Way done; this year, we will go from Mayo to Belfast. Our two dogs hop in and away we go, we get to go to the festivals in style!

 

What is your favourite Cork memory?

Being in Vernon Mount House with my Dad. He would race bikes and I would be his assistant. He would come in off the track covered in mud and I remember the smell of the mud, along with the adrenalin rush, because it was more than likely he had won the race.

 

What’s your favourite place in Cork?

I love Rosscarbery, my dad’s family are from there and we grew up going down there every summer. My grandparents, aunts, uncles, siblings and cousins would spend the carefree summers in the area. I love going back.

 

Do you have a favourite quote or motto?

Those who dream, achieve!

 

When are you at your happiest?

I am at my happiest when Aidan, myself and the three kids are sitting around the kitchen table, having a meal and chatting.

It doesn’t happen enough but when it does, we could be chatting for hours, all their personalities come out and we always laugh.

We have a rule – first person to use their phone has to clean up after dinner.

 

Any regrets?

Nothing I let myself worry about. Life’s too short for regrets.

 

What is your hidden talent?

I love to teach, I am a qualified teacher and love passing knowledge onto people and watch them grow.

But my main hidden talent is that I am always lucky when it comes to parking my car. I always find a space, so much so I nearly always end up driving.

 

What might we be surprised to know about you?

I was born in Dublin and I had a caul over my face. This is supposed to be very lucky for a baby to be born with it. An old wives’ tale says I will never die in water. I love the sea and water!

 

Anything else you’d like to share with us?

I try to learn a new skill every year. Last year, I learnt how to run. The year before, I learnt how to swim. This year, I have just returned from a week’s bootcamp with Kathryn Thomas in Parknasilla, Co Kerry. It was a seven-day camp where we learned about how to nourish the body and exercised for up to eight hours of the day.

We were pushed to our limits from 7am to 6pm.

I learnt the benefit of having naps during our breaks. It was physically and mentally challenging and by the end of the week, I improved on both.

The sense of achievement at the end of the week was empowering. I felt I could do anything I set my mind to and when I returned to work, I felt I had enjoyed a real break.

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