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

Hi Ryan, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
Coming from a working class upbringing, and having mostly grunt jobs that I wasn’t passionate about but had to hustle with to keep has been a major influence on my career as a barber and as a business owner. When I first got my license I wasn’t good, at least I didn’t have the confidence to put myself and my clients at ease. But what I did have was that old school work ethic, so if I had a partcularly slow day I would just stay a couple hours late at the shop. I would weed out your options for a barber-everyone else has gone home, I’m all you got type deal. And thankfully that kinda put your head down and grind it out mentality served me well work wise, I made more money than I ever had that first year and I was able to tuck some away. That gave me some cushion to look into opening my own spot. And not knowing anything about running a business, I took that same mentality into my own shop. I believe it served for the first couple of years, but after that I’ve honestly been stumbling not knowing what else to do and having a horrible work life balance. For me personally, the shutdown in March was a blessing in disguise. It allowed me time to check in with mentors, peers and gameplan on how I wanna reset. I want to always be available for my people at the shop, but my family-my people at home have to come first. So I’m only a few months into a major reset in my work life balance, it’s been a huge challenge, but it’s paid off immensely. I don’t have to eat breathe my shop 24/7, I can take steps back to let others in the shop prosper-as it should be.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
We’re a 10 chair no frills barber shop in the east end of Houston. We honor, learn from our barber ancestors and respect the time honored tradition but aren’t afraid to fuck around, we all collectively want to grow in every aspect of our trade and all help to cocreate a welcoming vibe and I believe it shows when you step in.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Monterrey is the spot for food on telephone. Probably hit up rudz on waugh,hit up the rothko chapel at the menil. Terry hershey park is rad, hit that up before acosting college graduates in midtown

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Self made is a lie, don’t ever buy into that bullshit. NONE of us are self made, every single one of us have a little push from someone at sometime. I got a whole damn village that raised me, my family, my dad at S & B has taught me a lot especially in these later years. My wife Erin at headquarters/tpc real estate, Peter Licada at tpc real estate, John at Bison barber, Don at Modern Barber College, and the entire crew at east end. We all(hopefully) are collectively pushing each other

Website: http://www.eastendbarber.net
Instagram: @eastendbarber
Twitter: @eastendbarber
Facebook: @eastendbarberhouston
Yelp: @eastendbarber
Youtube: @eastendbarber

Image Credits
photos by michael santiago and mitch cantu

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