One of our greatest opportunities as leaders in the beauty industry is to consider how we can foster stronger relationships with our teams. There is an abundance of research that supports the fact that employees want a relationship with their leader – and when they have one, they perform better.
In my 2020 workforce survey, 91% of the workforce (students & stylists combined) said that they want a boss who gives them performance feedback & feels like a friend.
Every salon owner I talk to is wondering how they can get their team to sell more retail, add on more treatments, or prebook at a better rate.
The answer is NOT more coaching sessions.
It’s more time spent investing in the relationship with your staff.
You have to build a relationship before you drive performance. The simple reason is that the relationship gives you the respect you need to give the feedback. The right to give feedback does not just exist because you are a salon owner or salon manager.
The right to give feedback is earned.
If you are a salon leader who wants to drive stronger performance in any area of your business, I would invite you to spend a month or two investing in the relationship you have with each of your team members and then moving into the feedback element of your relationship.
Tips to invest in your relationship with your staff
- Build connection: Take the time to sit down with each person over a cup of coffee and ask about their dreams, goals, and successes to date. Share a praise with them on something you have noticed or are proud of.
- Build respect: Use team meetings during this time to ask your teams advice and insight on key problems you are trying to solve in the business. Show them that you listened and value their knowledge by implementing something.
- Maintain accountability: Show up and do what you said you were going to do. If you do have a performance goal set out and it is not being met, then don’t shy away from the conversation that needs to be had. You are here to help them grow.
After you have spent some time fostering that “friendship” you can setup time to have a conversation about performance expectations and how you want to help support them in reaching the goals. Be sure that you tie the performance expectations to their goals as well.
This style of leading – where you put the relationship building before the performance expectations – will change the way you feel about your business because you’ll feel more rooted in the relationships as well. And that is the magic that lets you grow together as a team.