Patricia Fripp Legends Who Rock National Speakers Association
I had the opportunity to first meet Patricia Fripp at NSA at our convention in 1977 when she was doing a little showcase for 25 people. It was kind of fun. I happened to be in the audience and I said, whoa, this lady’s got it. I booked her for her first paid speech, a little few measly dollars. She even said she’d do it free. I said we don’t do that. She spoke on a program in front of 3,000 people, Doctor Robert Schuller and David Yoho on the program, and the rest is history. At that time she was a superstar hairstylist downtown San Francisco, men’s hairstylist, best in the business. She’s today one of the great trainers and speakers of our time. She was instrumental in creating our Chapter in Northern California, has spoken at over 200 of our Chapter meetings. Now you all, we don’t have 200 Chapters. That means she’s done a lot of these Chapters quite often. Let’s welcome the incomparable, high-energy, Miss Patricia Fripp.
I’ll never forget the first time I met Larry Mariatini. It was 10:45 on a Tuesday in 1972. I walked into the lobby of this very chi-chi men’s hairstyling salon where I worked and there he sat looking most uncomfortable. Someone had said to him, you need Miss Fripp. Well, he didn’t know if he needed Miss Fripp, but he was there. Larry Mariatini was a computer programmer for Levi Strauss. I guess you might say Larry was a nerd long before I knew what one was or ever dreamed I would want to grow up and be one. Now I took him back to my booth. I shampooed, conditioned, cut, styled, sprayed, and fluffed his hair. He looked good. He didn’t know he looked good, but he looked good. Walked out of my salon with a bag of shampoo, conditioner, hairspray, hairbrush, never spent so much money in a barbershop in his entire life and he went back to work at Levi Strauss. And as he walked in all the women said, Larry. He went home that night and his wife said, Larry. Well, you imagine after a few days of this positive response, he realized he did look good. He became a regular client, and as what usually happens, when you change one aspect of your life or appearance for the better it has a tendency to spread. Larry joined a gym, worked out, trims down, bought some trendier clothes, and started acting in a more outgoing way. So much so that Levi Strauss offered him a sales position, even though he had no prior sales experience. Larry Mariatini turned out to be the best salesperson in his division. They cut his territory five times and he still sold more than everybody else.
Now I know what you’re thinking. This Fripp woman wants to take full credit for transforming this man’s life, getting him a better paid job, and shall we say more attention at home. Well, obviously Larry Mariatini had something to do with it, but consider this. Everyday when I went to work as a hairstylist I could have looked at my job either one of two ways. Either 1) I have 16 heads of hair to cut, or 2) as I chose to, I have the opportunity to positively impact 16 peoples’ lives. And when we do our jobs from the point of view of the service we do to others, not only are we likely to feel more totally alive, we are more likely to develop clients for a lifetime.
I retired from the hairstyling business in 1984 when I became the first President of NSA, first woman President of NSA. And I hope it would not surprise you that for the next 10, 15 years a lot of my business actually came as a result of the relationships I had with my hairstylist clients…
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