Issue 7 – Inspirations

Some questions that clients asked me, sort of forced me to think about this, and I thought it would be cool to share. I wanted to let you guys in one what businesses INSPIRE me.

Inspiration is a funny thing, because – at first glance, you can’t really see it (most of the time), but if you dig a little deeper, you may be able to. I worked really really hard to not only create a unique brand (Freehounds isn’t even a real word, but it may have become familiar to you now) but also an adaptable one that could branch off into different things. I think that it’s really important to make sure that you never cross over that line/grey area where inspiration, kind of turns into mirroring. It’s also funny because sometimes, you actively seek inspiration out from certain people/businesses, and sometimes it sort of just happens on its own. But here’s the top 3 inspirations behind my business, brand and company culture, outwith inspirations that may come from my own personality and earlier life.

1 – Brewdog ; Brewdog have been an almost active source of inspiration for me, since reading ‘Business for Punks’ back in 2015/16. Brewdog have innovative business ideas, some of which have inspired incredible and unique ideas for the barber shop industry, that I’ve yet to execute! Timing is key! Their attitude towards educating their demographic also inspires me, and their ‘punky’ brand making it big time, gives me hope that my brand isn’t too ‘punky’ to break through. I like that, no matter how big they seem to become, there’s still a ‘keeping it real’ attitude, underlying.

2 – Hard Grind ; Being a barber shop, there had to be one barber shop business in there right?? I’d like to add that the standard of the industry inspires me daily, and many MANY different barbers. But this is from business perspective. It’s obvious they have a cool and unique brand. This inspired me. Note that my brand is completely different from theirs, this is why we call it ‘inspiration’. I love the way that the owner – Colin, creates more of a company culture for his barbers to exist in, and enables a deeper importance to their presence within his company. I genuinely only hope that I can do this for anyone that jumps on board with me. Trust me when I say, I want any of my future and my only current staff, to be way more than just a ‘barber’ for Freehounds, if they so wished for it. Their also pretty ‘punky’ brand has broken through well, giving me further hope for mine. And they’ve generally inspired me ever since I first set foot into their shop, and met the boss man. Gotta have a cool shop right? Theirs is the definition of this.

3 – Abandon Ship Apparel ; I’ve followed abandon ship apparel since I was maybe 19/20 years old. Just prior to figuring out my career path, I wanted to be a tattoo artist. I also thought that through this, I could create my very own apparel brand. Freehounds has finally given me the platform to do that. But, I wasn’t particularly interested in indy apparel brands until I discovered them. Abandon ship apparel are one of the only ‘streetwear’ brands that supply a T-shirt with a fit that I really enjoy. The branding and artwork is obviously again, very up my street. But more than that, the man behind the brand does inspire me on business aspects, with his ultra transparency and humanisation of his company. You REALLY feel like you know what you’re supporting. He has incredibly innovative ideas also, with one of their recents being this 60% recycled and 100% recyclable box, that you receive your T-shirt in, when delivered. It’s also covered in their branding, which is pretty damn sweet. The way I try to interact with you all via social media, may not be too dissimilar to the way that Rich does, through ASA.

So there you have it. Some of the main inspirations behind Freehounds. The list could be way way deeper, as when you look back, you’ll find so many different milestones and segments of your life, that paved the way to your mindset, present day. Hope you enjoyed!

Kenny