If Only They Knew Jonny Hanford, 21-year-old founder of Jonny Blades
Leveraging the support of Big Idea Wales (an entrepreneurship service), 21-year-old Jonny Hanford has been able to turn his passion into paper by opening his own barber shop called Jonny Blades. The 21-year-old had wanted to develop his career in hairdressing for a while before this, working hard to get trained in both men’s and women’s cuts. However, he felt that opening his own barbershop would be a greater challenge. Jonny found out about Big Idea Wales via Instagram and simply reached out to see if they could help him follow his passion. The group helps many Welsh entrepreneurs from age 5-25 to further develop a business idea of theirs. The group is part-funded by the Welsh government and is a great way to help the younger generations. “It’s a scary experience to open your own business but knowing I have the support of Big Ideas Wales made it easier. Between this and several business courses I’ve attended, I’ve developed a better understanding of business owning and it’s made me feel more confident with the whole process.” However, Big Idea Wales can only help to a certain extent, the rest of the work lies with Jonny and it is safe to say that he has succeeded! The barber shop has drummed up so much business that Jonny is already considering opening a second store. “My ultimate dream would be to franchise Jonny Blades across the UK, but for now my attention is focused towards growing the business locally and giving back to the community. I’ve also sponsored Morriston Youth Football Club and at Christmas time I’m planning to give out free haircuts to those who may need one but can’t afford it.” Not only this, but the successful entrepreneur has been shortlisted for a Wales Start-Up Award in the Consumer Services Start-Up of the Year category AND has also been asked to come back and share his skills with the agency he originally trained at. Based on Jonny’s story, my message to young entrepreneurs would be to go, get out there & change your life just like Jonny did. Age and resources are becoming less of an issue in today’s world...where there’s a will, there’s a way!