It’s easy to agree with the concept of allowing employees to make decisions, but it’s another thing to live it every day. Neil Ducoff, founder and CEO of Strategies magazine, offers these tips for shared decision-making:

* Understand yourself. Even if you think you don’t make all the company decisions, your employees may have a different take. Consider surveying your staff on their perceptions of your salon’s decision-making process. Be ready for some sobering enlightenment.

* Define levels of authority. This will keep people from making decisions outside their levels of authority. For example, leaders should make decisions that will impact the salon 60-90 days ahead; likewise, employees involved in daily operations
(i.e. your stylists or department managers) should make the decisions affecting the day-to-day functions.

* Stay in your level. Leaders are notorious for disregarding levels. Even when asked, it’s essential for leaders to coach employees through a decision rather than make it for them.

* Trust the process. Remember, mistakes are opportunities to learn and grow. Leaders must learn to recognize these opportunities and work positively to extract the lesson learned. If you are negative, employees will be reluctant to make decisions.

Reprinted from Strategies magazine, the premier publication for business growth. For more information on subscriptions, seminars and coaching services, visit Strategies online at

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