• It All Starts with the Greeting!

    When you have guests come to your home, you greet them, right? You stop what you are doing and run to the front door of your home to greet your guests. You may have been in the shower, you grab a robe and run half naked to the door, maybe you were doing some home chores or on a very important business call. No matter what the situation, your guests are your focus and answering your door and saying hello is a top priority. When greeting them you give them a big hello, handshake, hug, you say “hello” or “hi there”, If they are a friend, you use their first name, you may invite them in, depending on how well you know them. Your guest’s immediate attention is your focus, your greeting is essential and your guest is a top priority. If you were to time this event, the whole process would be less than a minute, maybe 30 seconds.

    How many times have you entered a place of business and it seemed like hell had frozen over before someone even acknowledged your presence. No big hello, nice to see you, great to have you back again, have you been here before, or, we are so happy you have arrived, not even a hand gesture, simply nothing. You seat yourself and wait for someone, anyone to acknowledge your presence. No matter what type of business, you already have a bad taste for the experience you are about to encounter. It doesn’t matter how good things get from this point on, your service experience didn’t start as a 5 Star.

    Greet Your Customers Promptly

    A business study clocked the number of seconds people had to wait to be greeted in several businesses. Researches then asked customers how long they had been waiting before someone acknowledged there presence. In every case, the customers estimate of time elapsed were much longer than actual time. A customer waiting 30 or 40 seconds often feels like it’s been three or four minutes. Time drags when you’re waiting to be noticed and you know you’re going to be paying for a service.

    In today’s world we live in an era of instant gratification. People want what they want, and they want it now. ASAP has become our standard deadline as a society, and when it comes to serving customers and offering a 5 Star service level your greeting better be fast, polite and right on target.

    In face-to-face interactions, a prompt greeting reduces customer stress. Throw in the customers first and last name, smile and put out your hand for a handshake and the whole world just stopped, and said you are important and we appreciate your business. This is why I came here, for the 5 Star services. I am important!!

    By: Jeff Grissler | Source: ModernSalon.com

  • Why Cosmetology is a Secure Job Choice

    Hairdressing made the front page of the respected national business newspaper, The Wall Street Journal , July 5th in an article that pointed to the security of personal-service professions in an uncertain economy. Written by Neil Shah and David Wessel, the article “Why Hairdressers Are Secure: Their Jobs Can’t be Exported” compared the growth of personal-service professions to the overall job rate, as well as to middle-skill jobs that were susceptible to automation or exportation:

    “Before, during and after the recession, demand for one sort of worker has been persistently strong: jobs that involve assisting or caring for other people—from fast-food worker to home-health aides to nail polishers.”

    “These occupations have one thing in common: They aren’t easily automated or outsourced abroad. “You can’t send people to China or India for a hair cut,” says Israel Kakuriev, 37 years old, who has been cutting hair in midtown Manhattan for the past 20 years. Nor is there, yet, a robot that can cut hair or hold the hand of an elderly woman with Alzheimer’s or do all the chores that flight attendants do.”

    As the article continued, David Autor, an economist from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, noted a 36% increase in personal-service jobs between the years 1989 and 2007. Then the article points out that between 2007 and 2010, as the total number of jobs in the U.S fell by nearly 6%, the number of personal-service jobs actually increased by 2%.

    Another graph in the story compared the growth of jobs in different careers from 2007 to 2011, according to the government’s Occupational Employment Statistics. That chart showed hairstyling jobs growing at 4% and jobs as manicure and pedicure technicians at 6.7%. Other personal-service jobs that grew were personal and home-care aides at 37.8%, non-farm animal caretakers at 21.5%, home-health aides at 10.8%, child-care workers at 9.5%, fitness trainers and aerobics instructors at 5.2%. That was all during a time when the rates of overall jobs declined 4.5% in the U.S.

    As MODERN SALON MEDIA announced the WSJ article on its Facebook pages, thousands of followers liked it and posted their own personal stories of how cosmetology has provided a rich and rewarding career. See below to read just a small selection of these comments and please share your own experience with a comment.

    This story followed closely on the heels of Ted Gibson’s announcement that hairdressing finally will get a nod from the Academy Awards with the new Oscar competition category of “Make Up and Hairstyling.” While Gibson says this is a step in the right direction, he continues to campaign to get hairstyling recognized as it’s own category. CLICK here to watch MODERN’s Maggie Mulhern interview Gibson on this topic. All in all, it’s been a big, positive news week for the beauty business.

    Source: By Stacey Soble ModernSalon.com

  • Why Does Education Rock?

    EDUCATION is the information highway you need, and the key to your success! Not matter where you are in your journey, nothing will continue to flourish without the knowledge and power of EDUCATION, period!

    You could be in your industry for years, thinking you know all there is to know and still be in the dark of what is new and how things can improve for your career and business. One class, one workshop, or one conference could change the whole direction of your life. You will never know anymore than you do right now unless you seek out the information you need to succeed! Educate yourself in all areas of life. Whether you are fresh in the business or have been around for awhile, engage yourself in your profession and feel the love you receive from all the wonderful relationships you make along the way.

    Because our business is about the PEOPLE!

    Did you know that lifelong learning is the commitment you make towards improving self development, self motivation, and self discipline for your future?

    REMEMBER…

    Always reach out for your professional development. Don’t let the fire burn for what can truly be a magical career. Find new ways to enjoy your work and take on new challenges because this builds the confidence you need to achieve your dreams. Nurture your career just like you would a relationship that you don’t want to end.

    Benefits of Continual Education:

    • You will have opportunities to network with like-minded people to solve problems.
    • You grow personally and professionally.
    • You learn what’s NEW!
    • You get inspired to take action

    Source: Kathy Jager-educational solutions

  • The Importance of a Retirement Plan for the Salon Professional

    The quality of life you want in the future depends on what you contribute in the present. I am sure you will want to retire happy and comfortably with personal and financial piece of mind. The last thing retirement should be is stressful for you and your family. The golden years as they are called today are a time where we sit back and enjoy everything we have worked for our entire lives. Therefore to truly enjoy and be able to reap the benefits of retirement you have to start saving into a retirement plan immediately when you start your first job.

    Why Save-

    Americans are living longer than ever, and retirement is getting more and more expensive as the cost of living especially medical care, prescription drugs and inflation continue to grow. Look at the cost of gas as it seems to go up week after week. What will the cost to fill up a tank of gas when you are ready to retire?

    The U.S. department of Commerce reports that the personal savings rate in the country has dropped to the lowest point in over 50 years. This shows us that the average American will not have enough money to retire.

    If you work at all during your retirement, it should be because you choose too, not because you have to. There are many cosmetologists that still own and work in salons and barber shops long past retirement years. The main reason is that the beauty industry keeps them young and being around people gives you the energy to survive and live longer. Unfortunately, many retirees find that they are still behind the styling chair doing the latter because their retirement income is not enough. Inflation, rising costs of living and taxes can all take away from retirement and being self-sufficient. The uncertainty with having enough to retire sits on your own shoulders. We will explain in detail how to help put you on the path to achieve your retirement goals.

    Three Sources of Retirement-

    Social Security- The government set up a retirement plan through President Roosevelt over 60 years ago called Social Security. Unfortunately Social Security may not be around when you get ready to retire. The United States Congress is in the process of trying to stabilize and rebuild Social Security to insure that United States citizens have a government assisted retirement plan when they are ready to retire. According to Social Security administration, Social Security if still around will only provide approximately 40 percent of the income you need for a comfortable retirement.

    Company Pension Plans – Companies large and small have offered retirement pension plans for years. With the economic meltdown that we have seen over the last few years many have done away with such said plans. Government backed pensions for Teachers, Police offers and other government jobs are now in jeopardy as states and small municipalities are and will go bankrupt in the near future. Company pension plans are no longer the dependable retirement income they were once considered. For companies that still offer retirement plans they require that you work for the company for a number of years before they enter you into their pension plan. You will also have to stay at least several years before you are fully vested into their companies’ pension plans.

    By: Jeff Grissler

    Source: ModernSalon.com

  • Now Is The Time

    Have you ever thought about the impact you will have on your community over the four months and the impact the next four months will have on your business? If you haven’t, it’s amazing to realize that 100% of your active guests will be in your chair for up to 50% of their visits in just a third of the year! This is powerful and NOW is the time!

    When we think about guests that visit our salons, and we look at the year from January 1st to December 31st, we start to realize that even though our year is divided into 12 months, all months are not created equally. And, I’m not talking about the number of days. Guests on average visit salons every 6-8 weeks, but that doesn’t necessarily mean 6 weeks for some guests and 8 weeks for others, and maybe even every 5 for some. Sure, we have some guests that are like clockwork, but today with all of our lives going at what seems like supersonic speeds with hardly a moment to rest, flexibility is a fact of life.

    How many of our guest visit the salon in January? Why? Because we saw them ALL in December! From Hanukkah to Christmas, Kwanzaa, New Years, Winter Solstice, company parties and more, everybody seems to be celebrating something and they want to look good at every angle too, never mind the group pictures that will be taken.

    Today, thanks to social media, our picture can be taken at anytime and shared with the world, and if we don’t like it, too bad, just ask Prince Harry. And guests know this too, or they will figure it out after this year’s company party and family celebrations, because you either look good or you don’t, and they know we can help. It’s funny when we realize weather and holidays drive and slow our business. When you have hat-head because it’s so cold or you’re going on vacation and will be outside in the sun for 1-2 weeks of the year and in salt or chlorine water, making sure your hair is great before you jump into the pool just seems counter intuitive.

    But, seeing your stylist as soon as the summer is over? It’s time to get your hair in shape!!! That makes the first appointment late August or September, then 6 weeks later seems to be perfect in October…and with family and friends getting together for Thanksgiving (most likely celebrated with others because large segments of our population have a 4 day weekend) they want their hair done. Then we have December, which is a gift of holidays for all of us, which means they want to see us to make sure they look great again! That means 4 out of 8 visits in just 4 months and on average the other 4 visits are spread out over 8 months.

    So, now is the time to plan for big things, because the guests are going to be coming in, let’s look at some things we can do:

    #1 Promote your Facebook page and make sure 100% have a reason to LIKE it! Be aggressive, use discounts on product purchases, product minis or samples and upgrades to get everyone LIKING your page. This is key to being successful with social media, because if less people like your Facebook page then you’re not even going viral to your clients, never mind your community. But, once all your guests have LIKED your page, they have the opportunity in their news feed to keep up on all the great offers, services, products, people and educational activities you and your team do.

    #2 Great time to upgrade! The best time to fish is when the fish are biting, and the best time to grow your business is when your guests are coming in. So, from new retail items to new service options, now is the time to introduce them.

    #3 Raise your prices, if it’s time, now is the time. Cost of living is going up, food, milk, not even counting gas, health care and taxes. Reality is that every year costs go up and our prices don’t, so we need to work that much harder just to make the money we need to have the same amount of money as last year. Think about it this way, every dollar your taxes, health care and food increase is how much more money you need to make in haircuts, colors, texture services. So, if you don’t want to raise your prices, get ready to work harder next year, because everything else is costing you more.

    Now is the time to realize that this is your moment and plan for success, create new opportunities and inspire your guests. From the end of summer, fashion week, Thanksgiving and all the wonderful things we celebrate in December, not only do our guests want to see us, they are also spending money for joyful reasons and they love us.

    By Patrick McIvor | Source: ModernSalon.com