Question: What drains your profits? Besides all the obvious things like electric, water, or rent, what about hiring new stylists that are not taking clients yet? Yes, it is nice being the face of the salon six days a week, but ideally, I want my salon fully staffed and well equipped while I am sipping a Mai Tai on the beach… Let’s back up for a minute and get back to the Mai Tai later. We cannot bank on our good looks and luck alone, can we? Salons need trained stylists and clients pouring through the front door.
Step 1. Maximize Your Training Budget
Problem: This first one may surprise you, but hear me out. It would be much easier to say that the solution for declining profits is simply gaining more customers and paying less rent, but it is much more complicated than that. The biggest expenditures to our businesses are not always easily measured. For example, the way you are viewed within the community you serve could become your biggest asset or your largest debt. The problem is that measuring the exact dollar value of your brand image is nearly impossible. The same rule applies to training costs, but getting these under control could save your salon a fortune.
Solution: The dollars you invest in your employees to keep them trained usually pay off. When employees believe their careers are being invested in, they are much less likely to leave. Get your employees to stay and you have successfully overcome one of the most common destroyers of any business: employee turn-over. By tracking your training dollars and using them wisely, you can ensure your stylists are happy, up-to-date with the latest trends, and capable of producing the highest quality results. Increase the quality of their results, and increase the size of your client base.
Step 2. Get New-Hires on The Floor Sooner
Problem: We have all seen it a thousand times; a new hire—fresh out of cosmetology school, eager to begin their new career—ends up shadowing for too long. During this period, they receive very little structured guidance, lose a lot of the tools they gained in school, and bring very few new clients in the front door. Despite their lack of productivity during this time, they often continue to draw an hourly wage.
Solutions: What your new hires really need is some reinforcement of the skills they learned in cosmetology school. While it is unrealistic to expect that they have already been taught everything they need, they should have covered the basics. This gives you a small window to provide some hands-on exposure to models (friends, family, etc..) so they can refine these basics. As soon as you are confident they can carry out the preliminary techniques and treat your clients well, you can get them out on the floor. The sooner you do this, the sooner they can begin developing a clientele.
For more information on structured apprenticeship training for your salon, visit SalonScholar.com