Hairdressing is a career that's crossed continents and culture for the Ukrainian-Australian mother of three.
Olga Palanska of Kingsgrove is now encouraging more Ukrainian hairdressers to take the opportunity to work in Australia.
Mrs Palanska joined the Just Cuts Miranda team in 2018 and found the language barrier wasn't as hard to overcome as expected.
"I started my hairdressing career back in Ukraine and my parents didn't see it as a real profession," she said. "I started in Australia doing casual shifts on Saturdays, I actually started in a Russian speaking salon here in Sydney.
"My previous hairdressing experience in Ukraine was recognised so I only had to do a shortened apprenticeship before studying at TAFE to be a fully qualified hairdresser which helped.
"I've worked in the Australian industry for two decades and the colleagues I've met who trained overseas like me are all brilliantly talented hairdressers, plus I know so many salons here in Sydney are desperate for staff. I'd be so happy to have more Ukrainians here."
Just Cuts Miranda Owners Graham and Vick Bird said Mrs Palanska was well suited to her role.
"Olga is an authentic, sensitive, and confident communicator in how she interacts with clients," Mr Bird said.
"Having an accent or coming from a different country isn't a problem in hairdressing because non-verbal communication plays a role as well - understanding what clients want, helping them express what they want and knowing when they do or don't want to chat is important.
"All you need is commitment to this job and there are plenty of salons, mine included, who are happy to reflect that commitment in helping immigrants become permanent Australian residents."
Just Cuts Miranda Ukrainian hairdresser chops her way into a career | St George & Sutherland Shire Leader | St George, NSW (theleader.com.au)