Five years ago, Kaitlyn Kuehn began her cosmetology career at Martin's School of Cosmetology before being discovered by Tina Morschauser, co-owner of Rejuvenation Spa in Madison, Wisconsin. In that relatively short time, Kuehn has turned herself into a $100,000 a year stylist. Lindsey Sekeres, the spa's guest coordinator and an up-and-coming reporter, recently interviewed Kuehn, asking what's led to her amazing success in such a competitive and self-motivated industry:

Sekeres: How did you career begin?

Kuehn: I have been very interested in architecture and creating designs for as long as I can remember. In high school, I started doing my friends' hair and makeup for musicals and plays. I received a lot of compliments and began creating hairstyles for prom. This became a hobby of mine, and then I realized it was something I could really flourish and excel in.

Sekeres: What outside education have you found beneficial in keeping your service and retail numbers so high?
Kuehn: I took a color business class where I was able to walk through the reatil area and actually see the numbers from a business perspective for myself. Seeing the calculations and what you need to do each day to maintain high numbers really helped. I also had the opportunity to go to the Bumble & bumble Academy in New York. It was inspiring to be trained in different techniques from all over the country and be able to bring them back to Madison.

Sekeres: Rejuvenation Spa noticed a leap in your numbers soon after the Color Business Class. Can you explain what you learned that made such a difference in your everyday work?
Kuehn: It was a huge motivation for me to see what kind of numbers I could potentially have. Eric Manuel from Live Love Be did an amazing job showing not only how to better myself as a stylist/colorist, but he inspired me to be a better person in every day life.

Sekeres: Other stylists, who have been in the industry longer than you, have not reached numbers as high as yours. One major contribution to service sales is that you are able to book two color services in one hour. What other techniques do you use everyday to ensure you are increasing your numbers?

Kuehn: Every day, 
I come in early to look at my books and mentally plan out my day to see where I can add services in. I like to do future predictions to stay motivated and hit the goals I have set. I think that when closing the sale it is important to educate my clients on the products I used. I personally walk them through the retail area, explain how to use these products at home, and how to maintain their new style. This opens up an opportunity for me to pre-book them before they leave.

Sekeres: Is there anything that kept you motivated in the very beginning of your career when you didn't have a vast clientele?

Kuehn: I simply took every chance and opportunity I had for outside classes and shows. I had to prove that I was driven and passionate so when everyone else had clients I would practice on the mannequins. I tried to use my training time wisely by observing, asking questions, and soaking up all the knowledge about the industry possible.

Sekeres: Some of your colleagues describe you as shy. How do you relate so well to your guests with this type of personality?
It's easy when you ask them about their lives. I embrace the mindset that it's not all about me, and I try to get them talking. It's all about getting my guests to open up and feel comfortable. Their experience in the salon should be relaxing, I want them to leave feeling amazing and excited to show off their new look.

Sekeres: I understand that you enjoy fashion reality TV. Have you found any tips that you've integrated into your own work?
Kuehn: I became a fan of the TLC show What Not to Wear because of New York stylist Nick Arrojo. He inspired me to create
hairstyles to fit certain people, not just what the current trends are. He made me realize that every client is different. I'm not the one to style my clients in the same exact look because everyone is a unique individual and that is important to me. So basically I adhere to my clients needs because I want them to feel comfortable in their own skin.

Sekeres: You obviously are very passionate and driven in this profession. How do you plan to maintain these numbers and reach even higher for the future?

Kuehn: Right
now I feel one of the most important things is to maintain my relationships with my clients. Soon I will have an assistant and I want them to stick with me during that time, and keep my trust while I am training a new stylist. I also want to keep my sense of self while achieving and reaching for higher goals. No matter how busy or successful I am I never want my guests to feel rushed. I want them to cherish their appointments with me and make sure everyone feels equally important.

The $100,000 Stylist
Owner Tina Morschauser, stylist Kaitlyn Kuehn, and guest coordinator Lindsey Sekeres of Rejuvenation Spa and Salon in Madison, Wisconsin.

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