Naitcole Michele, “The Shark of Hair”
Naitcole Michele is that deal.
I met Naitcole Michele through my friend, Kimberly Wright who is the Chief Creative Thinker at Jon Ashton PR in Atlanta. I was immediately struck by Naitcole Michele’s professionalism and her sheer drive.
Let me tell you, I’ve been in small business administration for almost two decades now and it’s very rare that you run into a visionary – a true visionary – who understands that great ideas are a dime a dozen and the money is in the execution. Well, Naitcole Michele has grown beyond just having great ideas and is delivering on things many of us are still saying we’re “gon’ don”.
The hardest thing for an Idea Person is coupling clarity into a singular vision. When you can master that combination, you can move quickly and strategically from one deliberate tactic to the next.
That’s where Naitcole Michele slays. During our exchange, she shared with me the short bio that she published for a series of training sessions she was conducting at Bronner Bros. Beauty Show.
All true, by the way.
I’m going to provide a little context in the form of a backstory:
Naitcole Michele started braiding at the age of eight and by the time she reached middle school, she already had her own appointment book. She went away to college after high school as the manner of some is, but after a semester of studying sociology, she couldn’t shake the beauty itch.
She was fascinated with the industry. Her natural talents and hair skills aside, her passion was the industry itself. She immediately made her way out of college and into beauty school. She was one of the droves of black folks who made Atlanta home in the 1990s and early 2000s and she took a job in Atlanta’s ultra-urban, ultra high-end Buckhead neighborhood working as an Assistant at Vidal Sassoon at Lenox Mall.
Knowing Naitcole Michele now, I really can’t picture her as anything other than swank and upscale. It was there that she says she learned the very definition of branding, in the little excellence lab Vidal Sassoon had cooking. I suppose where cosmetology training is concerned, her pedigree is spectacular.
Today, she is a visionary, a stylist’s stylist – absolutely unstoppable in her mission to build a brand of excellence in an industry inundated with folks trying to skate by on natural talent.
Excellence and talent are not one in the same.
You have to respect a woman who commands the room as she does. I liked her from jump and I think her vision for Naitcole Michele International is the stuff of legends.
Naitcole Michele International’s Growing IP Portfolio
So, if you know anything at all about me, you know I’m an adamant supporter of African American businesses adopting the creation of intellectual property as a key element of their business strategy.
Let’s first take a look at her actual beauty products. FORME by Naitcole Michele is her exclusive hair care line, available to a VIP list of salons across the south and in Bermuda. FORME offers fifteen luxe products: Spa Ambiance Shampoo, Spa Ambiance Conditioner, Aero-Forme Hairspray, Give Me Shine, Redefine Gel, Color Therape Shampoo, Color Therape Conditioner, Formelation, Wax Me Up defining wax, Creme Brulee Shampoo, Ala Mode Deep Conditioner, No H2O Dry Shampoo, Silk Nectar smoothing serum, Therape Oil, and Silkening Mist shine spray.
With seven – count ’em seven – training DVDs, this woman is definitely ahead in the IP game. I create training products for people for a living and I am struggling to get my first product done! I blame my one-year old for that though… because she cannot defend her own honor.
This portfolio of training videos serves as the core product base for the Naitcole Michele International Training Academy that my team and I will be working with her to launch this summer, just ahead of the fall enrollment period.
The catalog currently contains fifteen titles. Seven are pictured here: Shattered Shapes, Harmonic Hues, Pinch Cutting, Shapes & Color, Shear Artistry, Techniques of Prisming and Sculpting, and Asymmetric Swing Bob. You can grab any one of these DVDs right on the product page of Naitcole Michele’s website.
The Beauty and Beyond Book Series
Naitcole Michele contacted me in the Spring of this year to edit her second book, Branding Beauty and Beyond: Become the Industry’s Next Billion-Dollar Brand. My editing work actually didn’t take long, as Naitcole Michele has very few qualms about what she wants to say and how she wants to say it.
Branding, Beauty & Beyond is the second book in her Beauty & Beyond series. The first, Business, Beauty & Beyond is already in print and being used in her training sessions as a guide. Naitcole Michele is a stickler for excellence and wants to use her books as an actionable playbook for beauty industry professionals, many of whom are talented and skilled in their craft but unlearned in the arts and discipline of running a business. You can grab print version of her book on her website or grab the Kindle version on Amazon. No worries. I already have it on my calendar to get her book formatted for iBooks, Google Play, Scribd and several other eBook platforms.
Naitcole Michele is poised to dominate her industry. And I’m certainly glad I get to go along for a portion of the ride.
I’ll keep you posted on what comes next. She’s on a roll, people. Naitcole Michele is on the road to building a billion-dollar brand.