Money Matters: Coaching Your Way to SuccessIN ONE-ON-ONE meetings with your team members you set goals, provide guidance and coach them to success, but who is coaching you? Through the Summit Salon Business Center (SSBS) and Matrix’s Money Matters program, Kelly Garner helps salons build highly profitable, teamoriented, sales-driven cultures.

ST: When a salon owner has most stylists working at full capacity but the salon still isn’t as profitable as projected, how can the owner continue to increase revenue for both the service providers and the salon?

Garner: “Most salon owners believe that an increase sales equals an increase in pro­ t, unfortunately that is not always the case.‑ If a salon owner is willing to formulate a plan and implement it, it will improve the bottom-line.

“First, you have to begin with the end in mind. As a business owner, you need to de­fine the sales volume (service and retail) needed to be a pro­ table company. Start with the facts. Too often, salon owners are focusing on today rather than planning for the future. Once you know your monthly service and retail sales goal, go through a diagnostic process to create a strategic plan:

1. Does the salon have an annual budget and analyze the results monthly?

2. Does the salon currently employ enough service providers to achieve the sales goal?

3. Is the salon open enough hours to achieve the sales goal?

4. Are the salon units (styling area chair, nail table, skin room) productive a minimum of 75% of the hours the salon is open? If not, should the salon double-shift?

5. Does the salon offer multi-level pricing?

6. Are service providers focusing on offering additional services? Are they being rewarded for doing so?

7. Do service providers have a career path at your salon company?

8. Do service providers have speci­fic goals and objectives to receive a promotion in your salon company?

“It is not uncommon for service providers to busy themselves into never making more money. Service providers should be rewarded for having a high demand on their time. If you give them speci­ c goals and objectives and reward them for achievement, you will provide a career path that allows them to make more money every year they work at your salon. At Summit Salon Business Center, we believe a salon owner’s success is directly related to the success of their service providers.

ST: What are the key numbers to measure and coach staff members with?

Garner: “The key measurements for coaching are guest count, rebooks, average ticket (sales) and retail. In a coaching session, we focus on one element at a time. If properly coached, these measurements evolve in natural order of occurrence. For example, on the SSBC level chart, a Level 1 stylist’s guest count goal is 90 per month. In order to build that demand on their time, it is essential to have a strategy for securing future reservations, as well as tracking the success rate. The computer software systems are wonderful business tools; however, stylists who are serious about building the demand on their time will manually track as well.

Proper coaching depends on two important things. One, do you have regularly scheduled (monthly) coaching sessions with your team and are those sessions scheduled at least six months in the future? Two, do you have a consistent process for coaching? If you didn’t answer ‘yes’ to both, it is time to revisit your coaching practices.”

ST: What are some proven, yet comfortable, ways to get service providers to retail?

Garner: “We ask service providers to simply tell every guest what products they used and why. If a service provider consistently educates their guests on what products they used and why, retail sales will increase. We refer to this as an ‘intelligent conversation.’ The guest deserves to know how the service provider achieved the beautiful look.”

For more information on creating a career level system and establishing budget guidelines for your salon company, go to

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