How To Win Over Your Staff

By Bekah Nash

Being likable is probably not something you thought as being very important when you initially opened your salon and began hiring people.  While common sense tells us that it’s important, it’s not something we think takes a ton of intentionality.  But truthfully, being the “boss” doesn’t make you the most well liked person especially when you have to assert your authority every so often.

In reality, as owners and managers, there will be times our employees may not totally get us.  Below are a few ways to maintain a healthy workplace where your employees feel loved and appreciated and not just “bossed around”.

Set aside special days to recognize select employee groups within your salon.

In a previous post we mentioned a day that we celebrate our support staff.  It’s actually nationally recognized as Administrative Professionals Day.  This year it falls on April 22nd.  Get together with your service providers and plan something special for your support staff that day.  Just having a special lunch for them is a great way to celebrate them.

On April 30th is National Hairdresser’s Day.  This is a great opportunity to recognize the hard work of your employees that stand behind the chair each day.  Something as simple as having a florist deliver flowers to each of them that day could go a long way in making them feel loved.  And, as a bonus, the beautiful flowers on their stations will prompt clients to ask their hairdresser about them.

Write notes and give small gifts or cash to individuals that are going above and beyond.

We all love hand written notes.  They’re becoming more and more rare everyday and therefore go a long way in making the recipient feel special.  Set a reminder in your calendar to write them each week and actually do it!  Some of the strongest relationships that I have with employees were initiated with a hand written note just simply recognizing their hard work and encouraging them to keep moving forward.

Gift cards and cash can also be an easy way to show your staff how much they are appreciated.  Go to Starbucks, get some $5 gift cards and just keep a few with you to give out as you see fit.  Your employees will appreciate the extra little perks and, as we know, their performance will improve as they’re recognized for a job well done.

Recognize employees in front of other staff members.

A simple shout out in front of their peers is sometimes all it takes for an employee to feel appreciated.  You want your staff to like you?  Consistently brag on them and tell others that they’re amazing!  

Set aside time each year to get everyone together outside regular business hours.

A simple way to incorporate a get together is a staff Christmas party.  Make this time all about showing appreciation to your staff for a great year.  

The most important thing to remember about having strong positive relationships with you staff is tremendous intentionality.  Every idea listed above is calculated and preconceived and happens only when owners and managers buy into the idea that being a boss and being a leader are two very different things.  Bosses demand respect but rarely give it, while leaders earn it by giving it first!