Overcoming the ‘Big Salon’ Stigmas
Stefanie Fox Jackson

Stefanie Fox Jackson

Beauty Industry Team Builder ✨ Advocating for salon owners & stylists to build successful, cultured long lasting

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Feeling like a Small Salon, When You’re Really a Big Salon



I want my boss to be my friend. 

Aka: we have mutual respect, a sense of connection, strong communication, and trust.

The most important thing to me when I pick a salon to work at is the team – I want to work somewhere that feels like a family.

The biggest factor influencing my decision to stay at a salon is my team.

Today’s workforce is looking for a salon where they can feel seen, heard, and connected. They want the opportunity to grow alongside people that they call “family.” 

When we look at these data points from the 2021 Workforce Study, we can start to understand why they feel so interested in working for a salon that has “25 people or less on the team.” 

When you first read that data point it can feel a bit startling- especially if you are one of the many salons who are 25 people or more. However, if we take the time to look at the correlation between this question and others, we can start to see the real story unfolding. 

The truth of today’s workforce is that they don’t want to feel like they are “just a number” in your business. They want to feel like & be a person that matters. 

It is easy to perceive that a “big business” might be one we are more likely to get lost in. 

Another preference of today’s workforce is to work somewhere with goals and a career path.

In fact, they name the ability to grow as the 2nd most important reason that they would select a salon to work in.

In many instances, these things exist in more abundance inside of a salon that is in fact 25 people or more. While it is not always the case it is more likely that all of the bigger salons have some structures and systems in place for growth – where a smaller salon might be successful at creating growth without but it’s more unlikely. 

How do we give the workforce the best of both worlds? A sense of being “small” – so that they feel seen, heard, and cared for, along with the ability to grow inside of our bigger salons? 

I suggest you consider these two important elements to feeling small when you are really big

  1. Create leader layers inside of your salon. This means that you should have at least one leader for roughly ever 7 people. This does not need to be a titled leader, but it does need to be someone who knows they have some responsibility for helping stay connected to other team members and being their guide inside of the business. 
  1. Create a culture club inside of your salon. Culture clubs are small sub-groups of team members who are working toward a common goal and initiative. These small groups can have an assigned leader who helps steer the focus, but the entire group is invited to participate and connect with the other members. One focus area a culture club might share is a desire to buy their first house. These mini clubs can keep each other inspired and focused inside of the salon as they work towards common goals. 

Is your business big and struggling to feel small? Drop some thoughts on how you can bring more connection and relationships into your team. 

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