For true salon success, the difference between today and the exact same day next year all comes down to the quality of your team. A rocking team makes your salon and your life a joy. A wrong-fit team morphs dreams into nightmares. Follow my 14 insights into team management to get your salon firmly in the dream space.
In my travels across Australia I see salon-owners in every city making the same mistakes time and time again. Every day, they find themselves trapped in that place between a rock and a salon chair. These tried-and-true tips flip those mistakes into positive actions you can start on today. With these tips and a commitment to truth and training, you can create the salon you dreamed of in 2017.
1. HIRE FOR PASSION.
Then teach skill. Too often, we’re impatient and overlook right-fit people. Give me an honest and reliable team member with a history of good relationships any day. The skill will come and they’ll be grateful you took the time. In today’s climate, the pickings are slim – you need to think outside the box.
2. SHAKE OFF EMOTION.
We make way too many decisions based on emotion alone. Someone needs to be the leader and see past the day-to-day drama. If you’re not in control of your emotions, good luck leading your team.
3. LOCK-IN THE PAPERWORK.
A paper trail proves you’re on the same page. A verbal warning has nothing on a written one. Shun paperwork and you’ll be repeating yourself over and over. If it’s written, it’s real. Take the time to fix it once and lock it in.
4. PLAN FOR GROWTH.
You need a serious plan to grow and be at X by the month X with X on team, servicing X clients each week. I want to be busier or I want to grow just doesn’t cut it. Create some serious goals or you’ll be forever doing “just OK”.
5. GET CLEAR.
Do you expect your team to read your mind? Or get frustrated when they don’t identify priorities or go at the pace you want? Clear communication your missing link. Use a checklist and ask them to repeat it back to you. That way you know they understand before they take on the task. Just because you said it doesn’t mean they got it.
“We make way too many decisions based on emotion alone. Someone needs to be the leader and see past the day-to-day drama.”
6. INSTIGATE ONE-ON-ONES.
Make time to check in every week. Don’t tell me you don’t have time. Everyone I know has 24 hours a day. Yes, everyone. You must make time for the things that will give you the best return on your investment. Prioritise your tasks and communicate well and you will succeed.
7. HAVE YOUR SAY.
Don’t be scared. And don’t tell me you didn’t get a chance to speak to him or her. Truth is you fear the conversation so you avoid it. It’s your salon and it’s your life on the line. You can’t walk away. They can. So protect your business with your life. Never let the sun go down on a disagreement or anything unsettling – it’s like a cancer that will fester away. It’s best addressed while it’s small and fresh. Don’t fear calling the shots.
8. TRACK LOST CLIENTS.
I’ve never met a salon owner who was on top of their lost clients the way we teach it at ZING. Strategic monitoring means you know exactly what is going on. Always. What’s the point of bringing new clients in the front door while you’re letting them slip out the back? Track your lost clients weekly. Rather than overall retention score, you need to know who “touched” the client last so you can see a pattern across the team and minimise the damage.
9. KNOW THE TRUE VALUE OF EACH TEAM MEMBER.
Most people bring value to your team and there needs to be a balance. Often the noisy ones are covering a shortfall and the shy are craving your attention. Look at them without emotion and make a plan to invest time in each and every one of them. No two are the same.
10. DRAW A LINE IN THE SAND.
Are you patiently living in hope that your team member will just “get it” one day? You’re dreaming. You need to draw a line in the sand and set the rules. Balance accountability and growth – 5% growth is still growth; slow and steady can win the race, but you must set an end date: If we are not here by then, we must agree it doesn’t work, and part ways.
11. LOOK AHEAD TO THE LEAVERS.
Everyone is leaving; it’s just a matter of when. That’s OK. At one time or another, you left your boss, too. You need to look ahead and plan for changes in your team instead of having to replace people while you’re in crisis mode. Look for clients and look for new team members, even when you don’t think you need them. You’ll be ideally positioned to make decisions on your terms.
12. BE UP FRONT ABOUT YOUR CLIENTS.
Speak openly and honestly about who the clients belong to. If a team member brings clients with them, list them by name. If a team member develops a following while you’re paying them an hourly rate, those clients are yours (not theirs) and they are NOT to take them with them when they leave. Period.
13. DON’T BE A MEERKAT.
Sticking your head up like a meerkat to check what everyone’s doing sends a message to the team that you don’t trust them. If you can’t trust them to do the job properly, be truthful and train them until they can. Truth and training – these two things will change your world. No points for being an ostrich here and burying your head in the sand.
14. PARTNER WITH YOUR BEST.
Don’t passively let great team members slip through your hands and go out on their own. Get creative. Why not partner with them? There are so many fabulous benefits to this and so many different ways to partner. Branching out can be a success for you both. All you need are clear guidelines and an exit strategy from the beginning.
Like you, I love our industry and want nothing more than to see it thriving again. The success of our industry, your salon and you lies in creating team that rocks. It’s the difference between dreading every day and skipping into your salon each morning excited about what the day holds.
For more salon team wisdom, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, visit my website, find my video tips on YouTube or read my latest book Your Salon Team, the salon owner’s guide to finding, motivating and keeping great staff. www.zingcoach.com