If you are a happy salon owner, it’s likely that you’ll project positivity onto your stylists and other staff. The relationship between a salon owner and its employees is very valuable. Such relationships require communication, loyalty, and trust. And even then, there are no guarantees that you’ll be able to retain all of your salon employees, but you can do your best by following a few simple tips.
- Don’t Hire Over-Qualified Stylists
Stylists who are too qualified may expect you to cater to them. The atmosphere of your salon should be one where everyone is on a level playing field. Meaning, each stylist should have an equal opportunity to succeed. Also, when you hire stylists who have years of experience at a different salon, they expect to do things differently, which may not necessarily work with the way your salon operates. The best stylists may be the ones who grow their talent with your specific salon and are part of the culture.
- Ask New Hires to Sign a Non-Compete Agreement
You can have your new employees sign a non-compete agreement not because you will enforce it later, but because it weeds out individuals who are not serious. This way, you eliminate stylists who plan on using your business to build their clientele and then leave when they get busy enough. While you want your stylists to be as successful as possible, you want to share their success as a salon owner. After all, you are the one who spends money on rent, utilities, marketing, and other expenses, all which provide the opportunity for the stylist to prosper.
- Deliver on Your Promises
Being accountable as a salon owner can make the difference between your staff being loyal or walking out. Be careful with what promises you make and make sure that you have the time and resources to deliver on that promise. Just like the stylist has to be accountable for his or her actions at the salon, so should you. Holding up your end of the deal will make the stylist feel content and they are likely to project that happiness at the salon. In a salon where employers don’t keep their promises, the staff is often unhappy, which can lead to a number of negative situations for the salon.
- Be in Touch with Your Staff
If you keep the line of communication open with your staff, they are more likely to feel that you care about them and their professional success. Management and staff must have a positive relationship, free from strains and blame. Meeting with your stylists regularly to speak about their concerns and expectations will help create a positive environment at the salon. Your ability to provide feedback to the stylist and solve issues quickly will be the key to the salon’s success.
- Keep Your Stylists Motivated
When speaking with your stylists regularly, make sure to convey that you understand this profession is their career. For that reason, you can let them know that their compensation may change in the near future. It is best to hire stylists on a salary versus commission basis, instead of booth rental. That way, as they sell more retail or get more clientele, you can offer to compensate them better. It’s important for the employee to know the advancement scale so they are inclined to stay with your salon.
If a staff member does choose to leave the salon, have a talk with them first to see what was bothering them. Maybe it was something that can easily be solved and change their mind. However, you should have an exit strategy in place at all times, should discussions not go as planned. Another great way to motivate stylists and retain them is to get each employee involved in things like events, educational classes, or photo shoots. This will make them feel they are working towards improving their professional growth.
What If the Stylist Leaves Anyway?
If you feel you have done everything right and the stylist leaves anyway, do not worry. It does not mean you have to lose the clients they once provided service to. Nowadays, clients are sometimes more loyal to the salon itself than the stylist because they are used to that brand. If you act quickly as an owner and send them a quick email letting them know that they are appreciated, or even a complimentary service to bring them into the salon again, they may choose to stay with you.
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