The last decade of salon leadership has been filled with scenarios where we have bent and evolved to meet the ever-changing needs of our workforce- only to be left feeling like they just want more.
I speak with salon owners every day who feel like they do whatever their team wants or needs only to be left feeling like they don’t appreciate it or value it. Or in the worst-case scenario, they leave anyway.
One example that many salons are facing right now is becoming a more flexible business as it relates to scheduling.
Today’s workforce wants to work differently than the employees of the past and as salon leaders, we are tasked with continuing to build a profitable business while allowing the team more autonomy than ever.
As you consider making your business more flexible let’s also consider how to set your team up for success.
We have a lot of employees – new and experienced- who don’t know what they don’t know. We call this unconscious incompetence.
As a leader, it is your job to help them see gaps in their path before they just land in them.
Consider this scenario.
A stylist who has been in the salon for 5 years and is fully booked comes to you and says that she wants to work 3 days a week and cut back on weekends.
She earns a great take-home pay in the business and currently works 5 days and almost 40 hours.
As a leader, you could choose to just accommodate her, and you might think that this is what she actually wants. But what she actually needs is a real understanding of how she can continue to earn what she earns now if she makes those schedule adjustments.
To set both of you up for success you should be prepared to look at KPI’s- including average ticket and average transaction count- and help her understand what will happen to her paycheck if she cuts 15 hours a week out.
You can then explore with her what it would take to enable her to bring her prices up to offset it. This might mean more education, it could mean more time, or it could be a simple price increase when her supply/demand warrants it.
Failing to help her see what we might think is common sense will just hurt you later.
Prepare yourself for these conversations with stylists so that you can accommodate them, teach them, and be their mentor along the way.