With Hiring comes Training: Have a strong in-house, across the board, training program in place. Education and training are priceless, it sets the culture, quality, and protocols, and it sets the standards for the experience and the brand. It enables you to discover hidden strengths in your new recruits. Make sure you have written protocols and your new team gets signed off at different stages of their training.
Have your Bookkeeping in Order: Most of us have received little training in finance and tend not to focus on this area until there is a problem. Be proactive, it can take as little as one individual to bring your whole house down. As you grow and expand, you better have your accounting, banking and books in solid shape with the correct professionals in place. Most salons either outsource or have one individual taking care of their books. This is too much trust in one person. Make sure you have good back up system in place…have other professionals that can come in periodically and oversee that your books, payroll, taxes, account payable, balance sheets, P&L, bank reconciliation, human resources and all other business transactions are being handled correctly.
Support from your Vendors: Establish strong relationships with your suppliers and vendors of professional hair care lines. No matter how famous and great a professional line professes to be, in the end, it is only as good as the representative that represents your territory. We have a line that has been with us for years and does six figures in purchases annually, but unless we see major improvement in their service there will be no further growth and they know this. So work with the professional lines so they see your vision and are willing to walk the talk. Have them put their commitments in writing, do not sign the contract they provide as is, read it, add to it what is important to fulfill your needs…remember YOU are the customer. Make sure you have access to others up the food chain as well. That way you can approach the higher-ups when the going gets tough.
Inventory: How you handle inventory for one location is different to that of numerous locations. This may end up creating a new position within your team…ordering, receiving, imputing, pricing, counting, returns, displays, backbar..it all adds up. Be prepared to think this through, including creating a mini distribution center.
Success: Keep in mind that success is sometimes achieved through a series of stumbles and blunders. There is no well-travelled roadmap to success, just hard work, loyalty, honesty and possessing a deep well of passion that fuels your vision. Relish and accept the setbacks with the same passion you embrace success.