We had the good fortune of connecting with Mary Cheng and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Mary, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
Personally, I find a healthy amount of risk to be a good thing, however that doesn’t always carry over equally into a professional reality when it comes to making business decisions. When you are self employed, you are responsible for protecting your resources such as your time, so when it comes to risk management, you have to shield your business and your brand. The biggest role I would say is learning about to calculate risks, and understanding that personal feelings about making someone happy aren’t always the optimal business move – even in an industry that promotes self care.
For myself, I encourage meeting with new clients for an in person 20 minute consultation prior to scheduling hours of my time with them. The booking software I use also allows clients to schedule with a credit card, you can customize your own cancellation policy or ask for deposits ahead of time. These are all great options for weighing risk but protecting your resources.
It’s been a very healthy learning curve for me, and something I am grateful to have been able to apply. I also believe that when you conduct yourself as a serious business owner, you attract your ideal clientele.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
For me, I enjoy having full control of and flexibility over my business. I have been a stylist for 11 years, and the demand for business increases annually. My speciality has been working with classic highlighting techniques and I have had client who have been with me for years.
I started this job one yet after moving to Houston. Fun fact about me – I’m actually from Scotland and have lived here since I was 17 years old.
Being able to move from a different country and establish a business here has been something I’m very proud of.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I love Houston for the diversity we have here. I love to explore cultures and experience cultures with food, so this is exactly how I would show Houston off to a visitor. My favorite breakfast is from the amazing Tierra Caliente taco truck – the breakfast tacos are unmatched.
Lunch would be taking place at a BBQ joint. My boyfriend is the owner of Khoi BBQ here in Houston, so if there is a pop up happening that day, you can find me there.
I’m half Cantonese, so I visit Chinatown a lot and consider our Chinatown to be or of the best in the nation. If you haven’t yet experienced dim sum on a Sunday morning or any of the restaurants on Bellaire Food Street, go!
My favorite museums are the museum of fine arts and the Menil Collection which is central to where my salon is located.
I also love all the small boutiques and small businesses in old town Heights, and the array of thrift stores with unique finds in Montrose.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Shout out to my great salon team Kaleido Hair! I have been running my own business with this space for a little over 2 years now.

Instagram: @marydoesmyhair

Yelp: Kaleido Hair

Image Credits
Liz Haven, Taylor Rivera

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutHTX is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.