How to Manage Hairdressers in Salon

Steve Winder Salon Owner
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How To Manage Hairdressers

We have gone down the road of the pathetic softly, softly approach with the way in which we manage hairdressers and ended up destroying any sort of discipline in the salon. Now… I am not saying that we should go back to the time when trainees and stylists were terrified to step out of line but I think now it’s become a complete joke.

Some salon owners I have spoken too are frightened to discipline their staff in case they leave! and thats just crazy!!

If we create an environment with a strong culture so that everyone knows what is expected of them, things get so much easier and managing hairdressers becomes  a real pleasure.

Have a good think about your salon culture.

Imagine sitting in a pub and you see one of your clients sitting near by but they have not notice you are there. What would you love to hear them say about your salon? and what would you hate to hear the say about your salon!

Whatever you heard would make a fantastic start to your salon standards… agree!

Knowing what you want is absolutely key to managing hairdressers. Once you understand and then get your team to understand what the salon standards are then you on the right road to managing your team. And once you have a culture it becomes self disciplining!

The team will tell each other when they are stepping out of line because the salon standards are in place and everyone knows what they should be doing!

There are so many good books on managerial skills available today it’s so important to keep improving your skills and knowledge putting into action the things you learn.

I always hear the crummy excuse “I have not been sent on a course yet, and that my boss has hasn’t bothered to train me” and “I was just given the job and left to get on with it”.

Does that Sound familiar?

I know there are many salon owners that send managers on courses but my point is this… it seems that the attitude of stylists, trainees and yes some managers are, it’s their right to all these things but my point is summed up in this statement.

”everyone seems to have rights but nobody seems to have responsibilities anymore”

Sound true? 

Why is it they think… it’s my right to go on a course but it’s not my responsibility to buy books on how to manage and gain more knowledge in my own time.

Ok… So what skills does a great hairdressing manager need then?

Well here’s a few…

  • Leadership A great hairdressing manager should inspire the team and give them motivation and direction. They should also be able to come up with the answers the team needs.
  • Culture A great manager should be able to build a strong culture into the team so that the salon becomes self-disciplining. this creates values and in turn aspirations which will lead to great team spirit.
  • Dealing with different people A great hairdressing manager should be able to deal with different people in different ways because we all have different problems at different times.
  • Organise the team A great hairdressing manager should be organised, not only with the team but with themselves. How many times has someone asked you something and you have not fully delivered the answer or even worse forgot to do it at all.
  • Delegate This is one of the hardest that I have found. To be a great  manager you need to be able to delegate and not abdicate. Delegation will create worth in your team as long as you help them along and be supportive. Never, never give something for someone to do and then take it away as this will create de-motivation and bad feeling. Getting help with low priority tasks will help your time management and motivate them.
  • Focus Make sure your hairdressing team is focused and all firing in the same direction. Creating a focus on a service or product will help you achieve your goals.
  • Discipline A great hairdressing manager needs to reinforce discipline in the salon. Make sure your team really understands how serious you are about the team goals, direction and standards. They also must fully understand what will happen if they do not perform well or  and what will happen if they do.

“A hairdressing manager needs to manage”

That statement is SO true…think about it, a manager needs to manage in all areas.

So to summarise a great hairdressing manager has to be aware of his/her own faults.

Be able to create discipline in the salon but is also be approachable and understanding.

I think there has been too much hand holding and people are not being aloud to fail because with failure comes learning and growth.

I think that If you give someone responsibility most people will be responsible. And let’s not forget that there has to be an understanding that when things are not done correctly or poorly their has to be some sort of out come. You really need to think what are you going to do if someone underperforms? and what will you do when someone excels? 

I really hope this has helped and please drop me an email if you would like to ask any questions regarding managing your team. I would love to hear from you.

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