In this situation, salons end up with a world of prima donnas. Prima donnas aren’t born, they’re made. Owners make them because they’re so afraid that the day they say no, the stylist will throw a fit and walk out the door.
In this environment, you end up with a salon that is a house of cards. A salon that is one walkout away from closing its doors.
Managing the Brand
Your greatest chance at building a salon company that is predictable, profitable and sustainable is running your salon as an organization.
When owners run their salon based on the brand, they form a belief system, and they make conscious, strategic decisions and develop processes that support the guiding principles of the company. Over time, the people working within this salon may change, but the overall experience for the consumer will remain the same.
To manage the brand:
First, you have to know what you want your business to be. What are you striving to become? Who is your target market? What is the experience you want to create for each client? Start with the framework of what you want your salon business to look like.
Next, make sure each of your actions match your rhetoric. Are you enforcing your dress code? Do you have a clear pricing structure in place? Are you creating a brand experience for the consumer that is bigger that just the service that they receive.
Then, when your hire people, carefully explain your brand, your philosophies, your processes, and your expectations. Ask if they want to be a part of it.
Sidenote: There’s a general assumption that as you get better as an organization, then the individuals in your organization are getting jerked around. But that’s not true. What you’re really creating is an ‘everyone wins scenario’—the better the organization you create, the better the revenue that comes in, the better the earnings for the company and the better the benefits for everyone involved. In commission-based salon, it’s a mathematical impossibility for the company to grow at a rate that is higher than the compensation of the service providers. That’s why the brand is so important.
Jody Mason and Daniel Jones of Muse Salon in Alpharetta, Georgia.
Brand in Action
Meet two of our Strictly Business graduates, Jody Mason and Daniel Jones of Muse Salon and Spa in Alpharetta, Georgia. When they came to our session, they had a very cool, artsy space, and they were doing a lot of volume, but they weren’t as clear on where they were going or how they were going to get there.