Communication is key for this hairdresser

A hairdresser, Abbie Jackson works on a client's hairstyle.

Abbie’s Top Talking Tip 

Growing up Abbie’s family would chat every night over the dinner table. 

Her advice to parents is to tap into whatever their kids are interested in. 

“Whether it’s sport, a book or music, try and get them talking about their passion.” 

Abbie Jackson doesn’t describe herself as a natural talker. 

It’s a skill she has developed. And it’s essential in her chosen career of hairdressing. 

“It’s definitely not something that came super natural to me – but practise is key. The more you talk and demonstrate good conversation, the better you become”. 

The 23-year-old  always knew she wanted to be a hairdresser. From age 3, she would style her doll’s hair.  

“My Pop was a barber, so maybe that’s where it came from. I’ve always absolutely loved the creativity of hairdressing”. 

Abbie landed a hairdressing apprenticeship after taking part in the Big Picture School program at Hobart’s Ogilvie High School. 

The Big Picture program had a strong focus on work placement and developing real world skills such as good communication. 

Abbie credits the program with “skyrocketing” her into her chosen career. 

During her apprenticeship, she spent a whole term at TAFE studying communication. 

“In hairdressing it’s all about sitting down and really listening to clients, making sure you are on the same page,” she said. 

“ If they ask for brown hair, you might need to show them colour swatches or pictures to confirm what they really want”. 

“Sometimes you have to keep asking people the same question in a different way, just to be sure.” 

Abbie now owns and runs her own salon and has won awards for her work. 

Her other passion is competitive ballroom dancing – a sport her whole family is involved in. 

“I’ve been dancing since I could walk and I just love it. It’s a complete lifestyle and you are always learning something”. 

Abbie spends hours practising and performing with her ballroom dancing partner Sam Blackaby, who is also her life partner. 

But despite how well they know each other, talking and listening is still key. 

“Dancing is all about two people doing one movement.” 

“You have those days when things aren’t working well.” 

“Sometimes it can be hard to figure out who is at fault, is it you or is it them?” she says. 

“You just have to talk it through.”