First impressions by potential employers are subconscious and judgmental so we want to show our guests how to make maximum impact at first sight with a message that says, "I'm a confident, professional woman and you need me on your team!"
Like most military women, I spent a lot of time in my battle dress wearing a sports bra and my hair tied up. My first job in 1982 was working in a large tanker maintenance squadron occupied mostly by men and I can honestly say that my experience was truly amazing, credited to strong leaders: Colonels George R. Mouwdy, Oscar Culp and Robert M. Penn. I've always been competitive so my goal was to move up as fast as I could. I volunteered for everything, furthered my education, worked with a mentor and made it to the Senior NCO ranks as a First Sergeant However, throughout those years, I learned to hide my emotions and admittedly, I lost a bit of my femininity and a lot of myself along the way as well.
Fast forward to my retirement in 2004: My transition to civilian life was not a positive experience.. I fell very disconnected to civilian life and unprepared. I actively looked for a job but the pay was not commensurate with my experience, skills and education. I finally chose entrepreneurship instead and with the support of my family, I turned a part-time passion into a successful business in the wedding beauty industry.
In 2016, a friend asked me if I'd help a transitioning Woman Marine who was job hunting but needed a little "update" to her appearance -- she was getting interviews but no offers. After seeing her confidence soar with a fresh hair style, a little makeup and a sharp interview outfit, I wondered if there was a need for this type of service so I reached out to my Veteran network, got more referrals and the results were positive. When we look good on the outside, we feel good on the inside!
Veteran clients have told me time after time that their TAP class just talked about the importance of a professional appearance when looking for work. Hiring officials confirmed that how a candidate looks, that first impression, creates a judgement (and bias) about who the applicant is and the value they offer. It's clear that the moment a job seeker is seen from across the room at a job fair or as they step into the interview, they are being sized up. How sad to think that an impressive military career outlined in a resume could quickly be dismissed just because of an appearance that might be interpreted as a poor value!
After a 19-month test program working with military women, it was evident that we filled a need and Strong Beauty Warrior™ was created on January 7, 2019 as a Woman Veteran-Owned California S Corporation. Our services are offered Business to Consumer, Business to Business and Business to Government.
Strong Beauty Warrior™ is a certified small (micro) business and we are listed in California's Department of General Services, the fifth largest economy in the world!, offering expert services and also products. Learn more about us on our Government Page
Kelly Robertson, CEO & Founder #SBW