We are delighted to share with you our interview Questions and Answers with the Business Woman Mrs Alice Jenkins, CEO of Harley Injectables.
CM: Please introduce yourself for those who do not know you yet ?
AJ: I am the medical director and owner of Harley Injectables. My passion is to de-stigmatise cosmetic injectables, to tackle misconceptions published by the media and to diversify the industry away from being dominated by predominantly male surgeons who can be intimidating to clients. Done safely with medically trained nurses and doctors with full knowledge and consent, my job has brought happiness to many clients. This I love.
CM: What was your path to the role you have now ?
AJ: Very long as it started on the other side of the world in New Zealand. I am a qualified nurse and it was this profession which brought me to the UK. From hospital nursing I moved to post operative cosmetic nursing in London. Working within clinics sparked my interest in injectables and I trained myself to administer and then went ion to do my masters here in London at South Bank university and became a nurse prescriber. Once sufficiently trained, qualified and confident enough, I took the leap to start my own business and open up my own clinic. I found it challenging being a woman in a male dominated industry but within which most clients are women which I feel is my unique selling point as I feel my clientele demo graphic can relate to me.
CM: What does a typical working day look like for you?
AJ: Conventional day is being at my desk by 10am seeing clients through to 7pm. But being the face of my business, I am constantly liaising with PR, checking emails, organising social media campaigns and attending training courses to maintain my skills. This can start at 6am and not finish till midnight. Self-control would be wonderful but as my job is my passion, it has a habit of taking over!
CM: Tell us what is your success mindset?
AJ: That is hard to answer. Clichéd but not getting disheartened by setbacks is one. Self-belief ties to this. If you believe that you are good at something (some feedback to confirm this is helpful) then exploring every opportunity to show off this skill will help success. This leads to calculated risk. If you can’t grow or establish due to reasons which aren’t to do with your own skill, then moving or partnering with new people can help. These might seem scary but if you trust in yourself and your skills, why wouldn’t it work and you can always end up where you are now.
CM: I would like to know what is the best advice in business you have been given?
AJ: You cannot and should not try to be everything to everyone. In a similar vein you cannot always put others first. I struggled and am guilty still of trying to fulfil too many different roles.
You need to step back, focus on what you are good at, delegate or pay another to complete those non-core tasks. Not only does this stop oneself becoming stretched too thinly and offering sub-standard service but also it allowed me to take some time for myself. Loving oneself is as important as loving one’s business and clients. They are mutually supportive.
CM: For a young entrepreneur, what advice would you give?
AJ: Take calculated risk. Nothing is easy in a competitive market. I worked full time and set up my business on the side. It was very hard to juggle two jobs but it gave me the confidence to do it alone. If you can judge your earnings over a period of time, then the decision can be made sensibly. Nothing is certain but no risk and no reward.
CM: With everything you have achieved, what you would say your greatest achievement is?
AJ: To say I have my own permanent clinic and business in the world famous Harley Street medical area of the global city of London with clients that fly in from around the world to see me is a huge achievement. Six years ago I was a cardiac nurse in a hospital in New Zealand, which whilst lovely is a small and isolated country. I have recently been nominated for aesthetic nurse of the year for the safety in beauty awards The awards are dedicated to recognising and paying special tribute to the many outstanding businesses, professionals, brands and service providers in the beauty and aesthetics industry. The awards highlight those going the extra mile in dedication and excellence and those in pursuit of the highest standards of safety in an industry frustratingly tainted by the rogue minority.
CM: From your entire professional experience, what was your most exciting project up to now?
AJ: I have recently moved to a new clinic on Upper Wimpole Street, W1. I needed to accommodate my growing business and from a single room previously I know have a suite of rooms with amazing new employees to help me. For a new company I now am the same size as many competitors who have been around more than a decade. Very exciting!
CM : What is your business current focus?
AJ: Reaching new clients. I understand there is competition to win and retain clients, often from other clinics. I think this is an unhealthy approach, even in the crowded market place, I believe if you satisfy your client’s realistic expectations then one shouldn’t worry about losing customers. That leaves the many millions of men and women who have yet to try cosmetic injectables or skin lasers. Greater education to dispel many myths and erroneous facts on the internet will see growth for all in my industry. Protecting the vulnerable from exploitation from unscrupulous doctors & nurses is important but so is correcting misinformation on the effects of botox or dermal filler which would scare off many would-be clients.
CM: Who inspires you today?
AJ: Medical staff whether surgeons, doctors or nurses who devote their time to those in need. I saw this when volunteering in Uganda which inspired me to set up a non-profit campaign to help those who suffer from cleft lip scarring and victims of botched cosmetic procedures. When I have more time as the business matures I will take time to travel to countries which do not benefit from our fantastic NHS.
CM: You found your passion, in your opinion how does everyone find their own passion?
AJ: Trial and error, I suspect. My experience was that I had already started in the medical world and by rotating through different disciplines and seeing new areas I came to end up in cosmetics. By and large I believe we all know what type of job would suit our interests but it is not until you are within an industry, that one can know the sub practises and specialisations which will truly fire one’s passion.
CM: Much obliged Alice for your time and kindness to answer my questions.