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Last updated: September 23, 2017

3 Tips to Running a More Successful Salon

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Hairdressing has long been considered solely an artistic industry, but the leaders of UNITE’s Paramount Business classes know this is far from true. “[Hairdressers] are crying out for business education,” says UNITE Founder Andrew Dale. “This is what they need.”  


Here are three ideas to get you started. 


1. Branding
Both Andrew and Marcus Allen, UNITE’s Global Educational Director emphasize the importance of building your business as a brand and making that brand consistent. At the end of the two-day Paramount Business class, attendees all agreed this was the main take-away point. But Andrew insists on going one step further and making sure your brand also has a memorable culture—something he says Aveda has done particularly well. “It’s the brand and culture that are going to resonate and take you further,” he says. In creating a successful brand, it’s important to consider the demographic of your clients (age group, income levels, etc.). This will help you determine things such as business hours and pricing. The more finite your demographic, the more successful your business will be.


2. Teamwork
Once you’ve established your brand, you need to build a strong team that is on board with your brand and your culture. “Do you have the right people on the bus going the way you want to go?” asks Andrew. “Because if they don’t agree with your brand, and if they’re not involved in your culture, you’re never going to get there.” Here are few important points to remember:

• “Praise in public and criticize in private,” says Marcus. “If I want to talk to you about something, I’m going to sit down with you and have a real conversation because I value you. Without hairdressers, I don’t have a business.”
• Hire a manager with different skill sets than you have.
Remember your salon staff is the most important part of the business. “People think it’s the customer,” Marcus says. “But it’s not—it’s the staff. I take care of my staff, the staff takes care of the client and we have a happy business.”




3. Business Management
One of Andrew and Marcus’s main goals for Paramount Business is to help salon owners and managers understand the technical components of running a successful business. This includes overall salon policies, procedures and staff management. Here is some stellar advice to consider:
 Don’t go over a three-year plan for your business. “Things change so much,” warns Andrew. “Three years from now, you’re definitely not going to be doing the same things you’re doing today.”
• Every salon should have a mystery shopper twice a year.
Own your salon. “We tell everyone here they should be looking to own the building they’re in within the next three years,” Andrew says.
• Managers and owners: don’t get angry at your staff. “It shouldn’t be a personal relationship,” Marcus says. “Most people get mad because they need that anger to be able to say what they feel instead of saying ‘Listen, I think you’re great but you need to come to work on time.’ Or ‘I think you’re great but you can’t speak to our receptionist this way.”


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