Friday, March 25, 2011


For the past 9 weeks I have been contracted to work at a Brisbane beauty training college in Milton.
I was recommended for the role of trainer by a “friend” who is the Head Trainer at this establishment. I have no formal training as a trainer and assessor but she and management felt that I would be suitable for this role regardless.
They said they could not pay me the proper award rate for my duties because I had no formal training but have expected me to perform the same duties as a qualified trainer.
I was told to take charge of the delivery of the Certificate 2 in Makeup classes and design lesson plans in order to achieve this - which I have done.
I have also written a new unit for the classes and generated many other handouts for the students covering vital topics that are not covered in any of the support materials.
I have delivered all aspects of the course on time and at a professional standard thus far.
While I have been extremely versatile in my delivery and very welcoming of feedback and input from all at the college I have had to endure what I would describe as bullying.
On one hand I have been told to make sure I am delivering all that is included in the theory aspect of the course, which I have been and then once I have been told this I have then been told to make sure I am allowing the students enough practical time, which I have been as well.
I have been questioned by the Head Trainer on numerous occasions and I accept this as it is part of her role to ensure everything is sailing smoothly, but it is the tone in which I have been questioned that has made me aware that some underlying issues may be affecting this person’s ability to remain professional.
Then a situation occurred that has proved this to me without a doubt.
I had already delivered some of the theory work for the day and everything was going well according to my lesson plan when my class was interrupted when I was pulled aside by the Head Trainer and abruptly informed that I was to make the students perform four (4) makeup applications by the end of the day. I felt as though she was speaking to me as if I was a child that had done something wrong.
This took place in front of her Beauty Therapy students - which I consider to be highly unprofessional.
With the average Makeup application taking 40 minutes, that would mean that we would have to allow 5 hours and 20 minutes for both of the students to achieve this, this is not including set up times and cleansing times. As the students have only 3 ½ hours for their afternoon practical work I fail to see how this is a reasonable request.
Regardless, the students and I revised False Lash application and Gel Liner Application as this is what they had asked me to cover because they were experiencing difficulty with it.
The students then performed an evening makeup application on the two Beauty Therapy students.
This took some time because I had to demonstrate the two concerns the students wanted covered and the I had to assess and correct a couple of mistakes.
We were then going to apply makeup to the two managers of the college as there was no one else available however, they were extraordinarily busy so I told the students to go back upstairs and continue with their theory work so they were utilising their time at the college effectively and not just sitting around waiting.
We had just begun going through some of the theory when the Head Trainer marches into my class and asks me if they had performed the four makeup’s yet – absurd question because not enough time had passed for this to occur. This made me feel extremely anxious and annoyed.
I replied by saying that they had not and that we were going through theory, which I firmly believe is my call as I am the one being contracted to train this class.
Before I could continue to explain to her that we were going to go back downstairs to complete more makeup’s she arrogantly reprimanded me right in front of my students – this was the utmost in unprofessional and immature behaviour; this type of communication is completely unacceptable and will not be tolerated.
Even though I could have mirrored her behaviour by telling her not to act in this manner, I calmly told the students to pack up their materials and go back downstairs to perform makeup on each other.
I remained calm for the benefit of the students and apologised on behalf of the college for the unprofessional behaviour they had just witnessed. Both had agreed that it was an extremely awkward situation to which they both felt very uncomfortable.
It was at this stage that I began removing all of the student’s work and assessments from my bag and placing them on some shelves, I had every intention of walking out of the college and never returning again.
The only reason I remained at the college is because of the students who were already there and the students who were attending that evening.
While I am open to input and feedback, as I have already made very clear in countless circumstances, I will not accept rudeness, arrogance or non professionalism especially when it is in a public situation.
As the owner of my own business I set the guidelines as to how much I am paid, the hours I work and how I perform the duties requested of me – not some bitchy, unprofessional Head Trainer with a lust for asserting her authority.
I believe somebody needs to explain to this person that I am an individual contractor visiting the college to deliver training according to a mixture of mine and the college’s standards, the person I am contracted by and to is not her, it is the owner.
As a visitor to the college I expect the same professional treatment as any other visitor.
If this was an issue then I should have been employed as an employee of the college which I initially thought I would be until I was told otherwise after one week of training had already taken place.
I had no other option but to agree to being an individual contractor and accept the rate of pay already agreed to, which was well below the normal rate of pay for this type of role.
I have never experienced this from the managers or any of my students but unfortunately I have experienced all of the above from the Head Trainer, who I thought was a friend and was the one person who actually wanted me at the college.
I still do not know what is going on in this woman’s mind but she had obviously mistaken me for someone else.
No doubt that I will probably be dismissed under the guise of some inane reason so that all this is swept under the rug. After all, birds of a feather flock together.
They’ll find someone else who will have to endure the same treatment and I will have been “let go” because I “wasn’t suitable for the role” or some other fabrication.
But hey, I did all that I could and I know that I excelled beyond expectation; I think that is why the bullying began in the first place. Most adult bullies are stricken by envy and self esteem issues.
Since lodging a complaint with the Principle of the college I have been terminated.
So here is another case of the bully winning again – but rest assured that, if asked, I will not hesitate to let everyone in the Beauty, Fashion, Film and Television Industry know of what has happened and who was involved.