For techs who live and work in populations under 55,000, the challenges of finding and retaining a full clientele can be balanced by the personal relationships formed and small-town kindness shown by area residents.
Wausau is located smack dab in the middle of Wisconsin. The land became federal-owned in 1836 through a treaty with the Chippewa Indians. “Wausau” is a native Chippewa word meaning, “able to be seen from far away.” Being a male, Marc Foley is a unique nail technician in the city, but he’s quite accomplished and has done nails for 22 years. “That’s probably been the biggest challenge,” says Foley. “I’m the only man doing nails here, and the looks and attitudes regarding it make me laugh sometimes. When I first started, friends would joke about my job until I told them how much I make an hour doing something I love to do. Not too many can say the same about their own jobs.”
Foley, a Wausau native, is the owner of Greatful Nails salon and works as a state board examiner for Wisconsin’s Barbering and Cosmetology Board. When asked how he balances a personal/professional relationship with his clients, Foley says, “It’s all for the good and the bad. There are times at social functions where I can’t walk 10 steps before running into a past, present, or future client. And sometimes my wife and I will go do things outside of our community just to avoid people we know. But so many clients have now turned into dear friends, where I have become a part of their families, and they of mine. And I haven’t really had this negatively affect the business. In fact, it’s probably boosted my referrals.”