What makes a job fulfilling? Can you find inspiration in the work that you are doing? These and more questions usually inundate our reflections about work. We ask ourselves if we are making a difference and wonder if looking for your impact on the world is just a waste of time, an ideal that we cannot afford to pursue realistically. Ali Alhashemi, a barber for various celebrities and athletes and an entrepreneur with multiple businesses, found the answers to these musings, having discovered inspiration in his work cutting hair.
He is the owner of Uppercutz Barbershop, which was founded in 2014. In addition, he is currently employing over forty people and is the CEO of multiple barbershop locations. And as a celebrity barber, he cuts hair for Sada Baby, Jerome Bettis, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, and the entire Detroit Lions team. Al also owns his line of organic hair care products, which include hair gel, hair pomade, shampoo, body wash, and conditioner both for men and women.
Born in Phoenix, Arizona, Ali started cutting hair when he was just fourteen because he got tired of his hair getting messed up by the barbers. He ended up fixing his hair himself, and with the advice of his dad to try doing it for others, Ali’s humble beginnings started in his garage, where he charged $5 for a cut. The insightful backstory behind what he does was revealed in a GQ magazine article published in 2016 that featured his fame as a barber and his secrets for fixing thinning hair. He also talked about various aspects of his work, from the most popular haircut styles to his expertise at cutting different types of hair.
Ali does not just cut hair; he also helps out people find security in themselves amid trying times. He provides an experience to his customers, and they trust him to make them look the best they have ever looked. Ali has helped people who were losing their hair after doing chemotherapy, spending time, and creativity to style their hair in ways that could boost their confidence. For Ali, what he can do for his community, and the confidence that he gives a hand in building for his clients is what makes him love his job.
Ali is also generous with his knowledge. His Instagram profile not only showcases the cuts he has done for various people but also shows haircut tutorials and barber tips such as the importance of communicating with your barber about the style that you want and how to style your hair on your own in your bathroom.
Ali’s heart and good nature is also seen in how he and his team does multiple annual charities. From neighborhood free haircuts, haircuts at homeless shelters, to Christmas events, Barber Al is always there for the community to remind people that they are not alone during important times.
It is no surprise that Ali believes his most significant accomplishment not to be money but the difference he is making in the world during the time he’s in it. He wrote a book entitled, The Barber Al Story” to inspire people that success is possible and it’s just around the corner, waiting for you to grab it.