Cultivating a salon team takes time, energy and plenty of patience. So once you’ve found that winning combination, you want to be sure that new staff will compliment the rest of your team. It’s a careful balance, and one that many salon owners can find challenging to strike.
According to Rowena Berry, national business development manager for Schwarzkopf Professional, a little careful planning can go a long way in avoiding hiring a poor fit. “In my experience a lot of great salons with great teams, have grown their team,” says Berry. Here’s how you can ensure you keep your salon team growing strong.
Take Your Time
You’d never rush a client through their appointment, so it makes sense that you’ll take equal time when hiring new staff. “Many times owners get desperate to fill a position,” explains Berry, “but I always recommend a multi-interview approach.”
After reviewing a candidate’s resume, Berry suggests that salon owners arrange an initial screening interview to assess their attitude and then follow up with a technical interview to determine their skill level. By doing this, salon owners have the opportunity to ensure the candidate has the right attitude for their salon environment which Berry believes accounts for 80 percent of a new hairstylist’s success. In short, you can develop a new hairstylist’s technical skills, but the right attitude isn’t something that can be trained.
Knowing that a new stylist has the right attitude can seem like a bit of a gamble. Berry says that during the interview, sharing your salon’s mission statement and core values including things like teamwork and the education, will give you an indication as to whether or not the candidate will be a good fit. “Have an open discussion, share your vision of your business and give the person a sense of what your salon is about,” says Berry adding that in doing so, you’ll create a dialogue so that you can get a sense of whether the person shares similar values.
When it comes to finding out a person’s salon-life experiences, asking the right questions is critical. “Rather than asking about specific personality traits, ask them to give you specific examples of their life experiences,” says Barry adding that this is a great way to find out about a person’s ability to manage in many areas of the salon work place from providing exceptional customer service to handling conflict with coworkers.
Build Your Network
While you may have hairstylists with existing clients interested in working in your salon, Berry recommends networking with local school’s instructors and owners to find young talent for your salon. “Highlight the key features and benefits for apprentices or junior hairstylists who are working in your salon,” says Berry adding that whether you provide education opportunities for your staff or
health benefits these elements add to a positive reputation, making it more likely that schools will recommend their top students.
As a final step in the hiring process, Berry recommends owners get their team involved. “Have one or your senior stylists ask a few questions during the technical interview,” explains Berry, “the idea is that you’re asking for their feedback which often leads to a better fit.” Ultimately, the current members of your staff will be encouraged that you’re taking their opinions into account; leading to a smoother transition for everyone.
To register for an ASK Business seminar, please contact the Schwarzkopf Professional ASK Academy at (416) 340-1562 or download the brochure at SchwarzkopfProfessional.ca