Being a small to medium sized business owner means there are always lots of plates to spin. Just when you have one area of your business whizzing around another starts to wobble and so your focus moves to that plate before it topples!
In saying that, just like a dinner set some plates are bigger and more useful than others, likewise in business you have key drivers and behaviours that will strengthen your culture and future proof your business. As a business mentor I believe that one of the “big plates” is a weekly mentoring program with your team.
Before you implement weekly mentoring into your business you need to have a few tools in place…
I believe every salon & spa needs software to really understand their business. Figures reflect actions, the performance statistics you access via your software will help you to identify the individual strengths and weaknesses within your team. This creates a valuable “road map” for mentoring.
All of the above pretty much mean the same thing but I like to call them benchmarks.
Benchmarks create a performance guideline for your team to align to. In a salon environment you can benchmark colour percentage, home hair care, treatments, and rebook rate. In a spa environment you can modify the benchmarks dependant on the nature of your business and the areas you would like to focus on. Ideally you would create benchmarks to be part of your culture, everyone knows them and measures their performance against them each day/week. In some cases you may lower the initial benchmarks for new team members or apprentices who are just coming onto the floor as stylist as there is no point in creating a goal post that no one can kick to!
Here are the salon benchmarks I like to work with. Colour Service – 50% (every 2nd client) Treatments – 33% (every 3rd client) Home Hair Care 50% (every 2nd client)
Rebook rate – Minimum 50% ideally 75%. These benchmarks are definitely achievable and if you mentor your team to this level you will see a huge improvement in productivity and profit without even having to service more clients.
“I don’t pay good wages because I have a lot of money; I have a lot of money because I pay good wages” is a quote by Robert Bosch. Your team needs to be rewarded for their efforts. If you don’t already have a bonus/commission structure in place then you need to implement one, mentor them to help them achieve it and you will have a happy motivated team and happy loyal clients.
Getting your mentor program up and running… Introduce the benchmarks
The best way to introduce the benchmarking culture to your business is with a team meeting, this ensures everyone is on the same page and will also create an opportunity to explain the new mentor program and launch the commission/bonus structure if you don’t already have one in place. Your team will definitely be excited about the potential to earn more money! If you can’t get the team together then kick off the weekly mentoring with a half hour session first to allow you time to explain the benchmarking concept and cover off any questions individually.
Each week you need to spend 15 mins of “one on one” time with your team member (I suggest you mark it out in advance) to go over the previous weeks figures. This ideally should be done at the start of the turnover week. Pinpoint areas that need work and suggest solutions that will improve the outcomes to help them to achieve their benchmarks and commission/bonus. Each member of your team will have different strengths and weaknesses, some might be great at rebooking, others might be fantastic at selling home hair care. This isn’t about them being “good” or “bad” it’s always about using the right words at the right time or lack of confidence or even lack of product knowledge, but sometimes it’s also about them needing a “kick start” as they have become complacent about servicing their clients…if you do a bit of investigating you will soon know which of the above it is. It also helps to get some role -playing going to identify where they are coming unstuck.
If you are working on the floor within your business you need to lead by example! You can’t expect your team to achieve their benchmarks when you can’t achieve yours. Make sure you are diligent about catching up with everyone every week, your rewards won’t come overnight, like a snowball rolling down a hill you will see the figures and momentum grow as you embed the benchmarking concept into your culture. As your apprentices/young staff start to work on the floor as stylists/therapists get them benchmarking from day one even if they are only doing 10 clients for the week, they need to benchmark their figures.
This concept may seem a bit daunting initially but as you get in the groove and get the mentor program going you will find it invaluable, impactful and profitable and so will your team!
From managing successful salons to education and sales for iconic global haircare brands and now business coaching, Brenda qualifies as an industry expert. Brenda’s passion is empowering the hair and beauty industry to unleash its business potential and assist in developing the tools that lead to sustained profitability, growth and efficiency.