Our industry consists mostly of self-taught leaders—few of us possess formal MBAs in business. Instead, our limited skills are acquired through trial and error at the School of Hard Knocks. We depend on a mixture of limited courses provided by our vendors, peer-led training programs, and the occasional motivational seminar. In order to continually develop our leadership skills essential to our craft, this is not enough by far.
QUALITIES OF A GOOD LEADER
Effective Cheerleader: Possess the ability to motivate others to get excited and participate.
Willing: An effective leader is willing to give their time, energy, and dedication in order to inspire others to commit their all, to the vision of the brand and continually strive to deliver the best possible experience for the client.
An Inquisitive Visionary: Good leaders are open to new ways of approaching their business model, understanding that there might be better solutions that have yet to be explored in order to achieve current and future benchmarks.
An Efficient Communicator: Possesses the ability to share new ideas, eliminate the fear of change, implement protocols, stay on message, demonstrate how short-term steps, will lead to long term success
Playing the Part: Visualize yourself playing the part of a conductor, directing your team in the creation of beautiful music while still keeping all the players and instruments in sync.
Empower: Your team to support each other, step in when needed to support and further empower them when they stumble along their new journey.
A Life-long Learner: There is an art to celebrating and harnessing lessons from unavoidable mistakes. Some will be costlier than others, but you must learn to ride the lows in the same manner you ride the highs.
An Implementer of Change: To see the bigger picture, separate the woods from the trees, root down to the true source of a problem, and offer achievable solutions. Encourage your team to not be satisfied when something is substandard, but instead empower them to question the status quo and take the necessary steps to enliven tired routines.
Never Satisfied: Strong leaders are always pursuing excellence from their team and themselves—perfection should be seen as an inspirational zenith not easily attained. You are therefore always pushing the brand to a new level, striving to create and implement changes with the ultimate goal of your team's success always in mind.
Ability: The ability to tackle several projects at the same, ability to know, how to delegate others better suited in the implementation of current projects.
Approachable: Make it a point to step away of leading from behind the styling chair, or whilst servicing a client, get out of your office and be seen by your team and customers. Listen and familiarize yourself with their limits as well as their strengths so that you are able to wisely delegate tasks by selecting the right team members for the job.
Easily Adaptable: To hear, see and embrace current realistic logistics, reset appropriate new course based upon current resources.
Encourage debate, understand that 'their success is your success', utilizing your team to its' full capacity and then advancing the team to the next milestone.
Always Alert: Be fearful of procrastination, as you are only as good as your weakest link. Snoozing equals loosing.
Humble in Success: Successful leaders are usually modest in sharing their accomplishments. Most when asked will say they were just doing what was necessary at any given point in time and enjoyed the challenge. Monetary compensation was just a by product in their team's pursuit on achieving success
HOW TO GET THERE
DEMONSTRATE how you want your team to behave by having the best work ethic of all. Stay passionate, energetic, and self-motived, keep yourself healthy, and be willing to work long hours.
STAY POSITIVE and eliminate the words 'no' or 'failure' from your vocabulary, Instead, phrase changes with “We have developed a better way…” or “We need to focus in this direction…” Embrace “failure” as a positive challenge in correcting and advancing the course of your mission.
BEING inspiring, generous, socially comfortable, organized, well groomed are some of the qualities to be constantly mindful.
TAKE COURSES on leadership, management, team building, and public speaking at you local learning institutions, join business groups, and use the resources available to you through your local Chamber of Commerce.
USE YOUR DOWNTIME for personal development. Go to your local library and research books on topics that will lead you to become a more well-rounded and fulfilled individual.
PRACTICE THE ART OF MOMENTUM by using the energy from a recent accomplishment to propel you and your team to the next milestone.
ASSOCIATE yourself with other business leaders you respect within local industries in your area as well as other visionaries who are making advances in your field of expertise.
Allan Labos has more than 30 years of beauty and style experience across the country and in Europe. He began his career under the tutelage of Vidal Sassoon in London and opened and managed Sassoon salons and schools in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago and New York. For the past 25 years he has owned and operated Akari, a 20,000-square-foot business in Portland, Maine. Akari offers hair, nail and spa services and also includes a boutique, fitness center and medical spa.