Why Schools Are the Key to Recruiting & Retaining Stylists
Why Schools Are the Key to Recruiting & Retaining Stylists

Suffering from constant turnover? In the Burning Questions feature in the November issue of SALON TODAY, readers cited this issue as a pain point. We went to Jill Krahn, vice president of sales with Salon Professional Education Company, for insight into recruiting talented and loyal stylists and how to win the battle of retaining employees.

SALON TODAY: How do I get myself out of this cycle of training people for years only to have them leave and take their guests with them?

Krahn: My sister Jodi and I are partners in the salon division of our business, and we opened our own school with the goal of teaching students the skills they would need to work in a salon right out of the gate.  Our school helped to develop and establish best practices for Salon Professional Education Company (SPEC), a franchise school system that helps owners like us eliminate the hire-train-replace cycle.

Within our school, we have successfully established a robust recruiting ground for our salon. We can identify which students will be a good fit for our company culture and which students might flourish in other salons. For potential hires for our salon, I believe in and always look for the students who are loyal, community-minded, and goal-driven. By identifying the right personality traits for our salon culture, we have dramatically improved our retention rates and built a strong and cohesive team.

I would encourage other salon owners who want to eliminate the hire-train-replace cycle to follow a similar path and consider opening a SPEC school. The groundwork and infrastructure, including regulatory compliance guidance, is already established. Your next best product that you develop will be a student, and you will soon be growing salon leaders one student at a time. 

You and your educators will work with the students to develop, educate, and train them so they can learn more, earn more, and live their best life. A mentor of mine, Daniel Mason Jones, said, “when the student is ready, the teacher will appear.” This is your opportunity to elevate the standard of beauty education in your market.

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