When you’re working in a salon with a team of stylists who all have different personalities, it can be the greatest. You have a group of stylists within four walls who inspire, educate, collaborate, and help you out when you need to swap a shift or offer a solution to an upset customer.
But let’s talk about the inevitable. What happens when all is not quite so magical and there’s tension in the air? This can make work feel like a chore, a bore, or a significant challenge.
Great Clips General Manager Kimberly Williams learned early in her career that developing the right team culture directly and positively impacts customer loyalty and growth, as well as stylist retention and recruitment. Creating an atmosphere where each stylist loves coming to work and loves who they work with isn’t something that happens by accident. It’s a result of leadership.
Kim shared her philosophy for culture building, built over years of managing five salons. Whether you’re a salon owner, a manager, a stylist, or a student, her tips can be helpful for keeping the drama to a minimum and building an atmosphere of trust.
1. Keep open conversations a priority.
If you are a manager, be sure to regularly remind your team that you are all ears and that no issue is too small or too big for you to discuss. If it’s important to your stylists, it’s important to you. Listen with intent and ask questions to gain a full understanding of the situation. More often than not, you may find that your stylist simply wants to vent or that the solution is an easy fix.
If you’re a stylist, remember that your concerns are valid and don’t allow them to fester without looking for a solution. Give yourself time to calm down, if needed, before bringing your concern to your manager. This will help you fully articulate your thoughts so that you, your manager, and any teammates involved can reach a positive resolution.
2. Make fun a part of your culture plan.
Kim has a stuffed llama in the salon’s backroom. It’s her drama llama! Is it silly? Yes. That’s the whole point. The drama llama serves as a reminder that the salon is a space for positivity for teammates and customers.
Find something silly that resonates with you and your team that can be a reminder that you’re all there for a common goal: being the best professionals you can be.
3. Build up the positivity.
Whether you are a manager, an experienced stylist or a recent graduate, you have the power to make someone’s day and increase the positivity in yours, as well. You might notice a great haircut your teammate gives to a customer, or you might admire the level of care and patience one of your stylists had when giving a child their first haircut. Say something! Share your compliment and make it meaningful by being specific with your observation. It might just make their day and it will help continue to create a positive salon culture. Similarly, if your coworker helps you out with a schedule conflict, this may call for an extra special thank you (and maybe a return favor, too!) A text message or handwritten note of gratitude strengthens the team bond and builds trust.
Who did you notice today that you thought was extra great? Now, go and tell them!
All Great Clips® salons are independently owned and operated by third party franchisees. Franchisees, not Great Clips, Inc., are responsible for all hiring and personnel matters at their individual salons.