Survival of the fittest…

I don’t know what your current mindset is, however one thing is for sure – if you don’t have a plan, you are almost sure to fail. And if your planning  doesn’t include training and up-skilling your staff in all aspects of your business, the chances are good that you won’t achieve the growth you are looking for.

Success, and in some cases the survival of your business, depends on a number of strategies:

1. Plan your goals and the areas you want to see growth

2. Implement strategies to help you to achieve those goals

3. Measure the success of those strategies on a regular basis

4. Realise, from the beginning, that on-going professional training is the key to achieving these goals.

The importance of training or skills development.

The first is ‘mind skills’ often referred to as the power of positive thinking. Your mind is a generator of thoughts and ideas but is also a receiver of other people’s thoughts and ideas. Mind skills, or should I say managing the energy created by mere thoughts, also influences the things that happen to you. Positive thoughts attract positive results while negative thinking tends to attract the opposite. The secret is to recognise a negative state of mind and immediately replace it with something positive. Simply stated, positive thinking is constructive while negative thinking is destructive.

In order to build a successful clientele you have to have good ‘people skills’. Fundamental to this is the ability to listen. Your clients come to you for your advice and expertise and the best way to offer this is via consultation. Uncover clients’ problems, needs and desires by asking open questions and listening to what they tell you. In this way you become a solution provider and be recognised as an expert in your field. In addition you will need to be empathetic and patient, the seeds you plant may take time to result in new business.

The reality is we do live in a physical world where your ‘creative skills’ will always be in demand. And the way people look and feel about themselves contributes greatly to their own personal success. Be sure you fully understand what your client wants, if your creative masterpieces become a nightmare for the client you are going to have a very unhappy client. Keep checking with the client that you are giving her what she wants or needs.

Many of the services we provide our clients contain chemical formulations that, when correctly applied, will satisfy 99% of clients’ problems, needs and desires. So it goes without saying that your ‘science skills’ are key to selling your expertise and keeping clients happy. You may understand the physiology of hair and skin and the many scientific advances have been made in protecting the integrity of hair and skin but that doesn’t really count for anything until your client knows it.

We talk about the perfect client experience similar to the experience of visiting a fine restaurant or a five-star hotel each of which has a strong focus on hospitality. So when our clients (guests} are in the salon or spa, our ‘hospitality skills’ should leave clients in no doubt that they are both wanted and valued to the point of exceeding their expectations and giving them the perfect salon and spa experience. This display of hospitality ensures they will return for more and refer you to their friends and colleagues.

The final skill to complete the skills toolbox is ‘responsibility skills’. Nobody minds taking responsibility when things go well but not so when things go wrong. It is good to remember that successes are built on failures and it is better to have tried, failed and learned than to never have tried at all. Take responsibility squarely on knowing that ‘if it is to be it is up to me..