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Management Practices

2015 Salon Today 200: Recruitment & Training

Stacey Soble | December 15, 2014 | 10:58 AM

Recruiting a team that best fits your culture and training them to your exact standards lays the foundation for success in the future. We invited ST200 applicants to write to a graduating student and describe their methods for cultivating candidates, their interviewing processes and expectatiopnsm and the unique stages of their training programs. Extra points were awarded to salons that developed relationships with area schools, sceintfic systems for screening applicants, and creative ways to ensure new hires were ready to hit the floor.

AVANT SALON
Austin, TX
avantsalon.com
Roy Fredericks
SQUARE FEET: 5,000, 2,500, 2,500   
TOTAL EMPLOYEES: 48
TRAINING PROGRAM: 9 months
WEEKLY INSTRUCTION: 10 hours
AVERAGE # OF TRAINEES: 6
AVERAGE CUT & STYLE: $60
BEST-SELLING RETAIL: Aveda  
COLOR: Aveda  
TECH SUPPORT: SalonBiz, DemandForce 
“Our training program includes homework. For example, we ask apprentices to Google and collect images from an industry legend not covered in class. They are asked to come prepared with a style created on a mannequin, influenced by their person.”

COLLAGE
Alpharetta, GA
collagesalondayspa.com
Brenda Brinkman
SQUARE FEET: 3,600     
TOTAL EMPLOYEES: 26
TRAINING PROGRAM: 18 months
WEEKLY INSTRUCTION: 8 hours
AVERAGE # OF TRAINEES: 4
AVERAGE CUT & STYLE: $50
BEST-SELLING RETAIL: Aveda
COLOR: Wella  
TECH SUPPORT: Millinnieum, Demandforce  
ASSOCIATIONS:       
“During their training, proteges are required to have outside education. These trips are funded mostly through an education fund that comes from selling retail. If they reach a certain amount, they get an additional 10 percent in their fund.”

FREE SPIRIT SALON
Alpharetta, GA
[email protected]
Sandra and Victor Gallardo
SQUARE FEET: 3,200     
TOTAL EMPLOYEES: 21
TRAINING PROGRAM: 6 months
WEEKLY INSTRUCTION: 8 hours
AVERAGE # OF TRAINEES: 4
AVERAGE CUT & STYLE: $60
BEST-SELLING RETAIL: Aveda, Kerestase
COLOR: Aveda, L’Oreal, Redken
TECH SUPPORT: SalonBiz, Demandforce 
“Where our training really shines is in the comprehensive way we look at business. In addition to technical and guest care classes, we offer apprentices continuing education in the financial and marketing side of the salon business.”

HEADLINES THE SALON
Encinitas, CA
headlinesthesalon.com
Gayle Fulbright
SQUARE FEET: 2,700     
TOTAL EMPLOYEES: 36
TRAINING PROGRAM: 9 months
WEEKLY INSTRUCTION: 30 hours
AVERAGE # OF TRAINEES: 5
AVERAGE CUT & STYLE: $55
BEST-SELLING RETAIL: Eufora  
COLOR: Eufora  
TECH SUPPORT: STX   
ASSOCIATIONS:  PBA, ESON
“Working with two schools, we developed The Externship program, inviting above-average cosmetology students to come and ‘work’ in our salon once a week for eight weeks. The student gets a real world experience and we get to check out their skills, work ethic and attitude.”

HQ SALONS SPAS
Westlake, OH
hqsalonspa.com
Ron and Tamara Bennett
SQUARE FEET: 2,500, 2,900, 2,700   
TOTAL EMPLOYEES: 57
TRAINING PROGRAM: 6 months
WEEKLY INSTRUCTION: 32 hours
AVERAGE # OF TRAINEES: 4
AVERAGE CUT & STYLE: $50
BEST-SELLING RETAIL: Aveda
COLOR: Aveda  
TECH SUPPORT: SpaBiz, Demandforce  
“If we are impressed with a candidate after they fill out our online application, they are invited to spend a full day shadowing our Creative Director. We look for people who are ambitious self-starters, interact with guests and staff and readily assist with laundry and sweeping.”

JAMISON SHAW HAIRDRESSERS
Atlanta, GA
jamisonshaw.com
Candy Shaw
SQUARE FEET: 5,000     
TOTAL EMPLOYEES: 50
TRAINING PROGRAM: 12 months
WEEKLY INSTRUCTION: 6-8 hours
AVERAGE # OF TRAINEES: XXX
AVERAGE CUT & STYLE: 60
BEST-SELLING RETAIL: Jamison Shaw (Private Label), Nioxin, Moroccanoil
COLOR: Wella  
TECH SUPPORT: Millennium, Demandforce  
ASSOCIATIONS: Intercoiffure, PBA  
“A new hire is literally trained by everyone—from the most recently hired employee just before them to the most senior member of the staff. Many of our styles happen to be instructors in our Academy and new hires have the benefit of training under them. We retrain everyone in the French technique of cutting and coloring.”

JONATHAN KANE SALON & SPA
Flossmoor, IL
jonathankanesalonspa.com
Larry and Kathy Kane
SQUARE FEET: 2,700     
TOTAL EMPLOYEES: 27
TRAINING PROGRAM: 9 months
WEEKLY INSTRUCTION: 12 hours
AVERAGE # OF TRAINEES: 1.5
AVERAGE CUT & STYLE: $48
BEST-SELLING RETAIL: Aveda  
COLOR: Aveda, Mizani
TECH SUPPORT: Millennium, Demandforce
ASSOCIATIONS:  CC, ISBN, PBA  
“We actively participate in five-six career fairs per year at four area cosmetology schools. We get to see students, they get to see us and now that we have some high-earning staff that were former students, teachers are recommending us.”

PURE TALENT SALONS @ AVEDA ACADEMY DENVER
Denver, CO
avedaacademydenver.com
Tiffany and Kevin Krauklis
SQUARE FEET: 9,100     
TOTAL EMPLOYEES: 55
TRAINING PROGRAM: 9 months
WEEKLY INSTRUCTION: 8 hours in class, 32 hours with master stylist
AVERAGE # OF TRAINEES: 15
AVERAGE CUT & STYLE: 48
BEST-SELLING RETAIL: Aveda  
COLOR: Aveda, Pravana
TECH SUPPORT: SpaBiz, Demandforce, Loc Box
ASSOCIATIONS: The Day Spa Association, NCA, PBA
“During a student’s interview, we are looking for knowledge, skill of fundamentals, dexterity, procedure from start to finish and overall proficiency. Immediately following, they learn if they are accepted into our Puretalent program.”

STUDIO WISH SALON
Twinsburg, OH
studiowish.com
Rowena and Eric Yeager
SQUARE FEET: 3,000     
TOTAL EMPLOYEES: 12
TRAINING PROGRAM: 2-6 months
WEEKLY INSTRUCTION: 8-10 hours
AVERAGE # OF TRAINEES: 3
AVERAGE CUT & STYLE: $48
BEST-SELLING RETAIL: Eufora, Sebastian, Deva
COLOR: Wella
TECH SUPPORT: Millennium, Demandforce  
ASSOCIATIONS: NCA, PBA, ESON
“I created a Designers Digest to record and keep track of where apprentices are in their training program. We use our software to track all of their information and the Millennium Monitoring Station can be accessed from any computer with a login and password.”

VANITY SALON
Houston, TX
vanity-salon.com
Glennis and Fiona Tolunay
SQUARE FEET: 3,200     
TOTAL EMPLOYEES: 33
TRAINING PROGRAM: 12 months
WEEKLY INSTRUCTION: 8+ hours
AVERAGE # OF TRAINEES: 4
AVERAGE CUT & STYLE: $72
BEST-SELLING RETAIL: Aveda  
COLOR: Aveda  
TECH SUPPORT: SalonBiz,  Demandforce
ASSOCIATIONS:   PBA  
“When it’s time for an apprentice to test out, they put on their very own Fashion Show. Each apprentice plans a 10-look fashion show and are responsible for hair, makeup, theme and wardrobe. The education team grades the work, and if the apprentice receives passing marks, they come into work the next day to a salon celebration.”

ADDITIONAL HONOREES*
Blo, Raleigh, NC
The Charles Penzone Salons, Powell, OH
CoCo Cheveux, South Portland, ME
Cortello Salon, Jacsonville Beach, FL
Cutting Loose Salon, University Park, FL
D’Amertri’s Aveda Salon, Olde Town Arvada, Colorado
EvelineCharles, Edmonton, Canada
John Robert’s Spa, Mayfield Heights, OH
Jon Alan Salons, Nashville, TN
Josephine’s Day Spa & Salon, Houston, TX
Mane Attraction, Phoenix, AZ
Mango Salon, Richmond, VA
Metro for Men, Irvine, CA
N Style Salon, Saugus, CA
Namaste Pure Design Salons, Denver, CO
Nurtur the Salon, Columbus, OH
Paris Parker Salons & Spas, Hammond, LA
Peppers Salon, Puyallup, WA
Salon Allure Inc., Huntsville, AL
Zanya Spa Salon, Lambertville, NJ

*Additional honorees have accrued more than one honor in the the 2015 Salon Today 200 and their salon is profiled in another category.

For tips on managing education expectations, visit neilltsp.com.

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