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Seven Tips to Preventing and Overcoming Staff Turnover

“When you show a caring and sincere attitude towards your team, you will earn their loyalty.” — Jon Gonzales

Most of us have lost a staff member from time to time. Some leave because they feel they can advance their career elsewhere, and some are lured by being offered more commission or booth rental options and  of course client lists are expected to follow.

No business can continue to grow with a constant merry go round of losing members from your team to your competitors. Any interruption to building and growing your business is a major challenge to salon owners, our profession, and your other staff members.

How are we to raise prices in this type of  of business interruption and turnover? Our current tough economy compounds our challenges.

Unfortunately out of desperation, some salon owners will attempt to recruit key members of your team by offering higher commissions or booth rental options in the hopes of them bringing a clientele. This should serve as a red flag that  some owners are desperate and depending on a hairdresser to bring a clientele to help grow their business .

There is a question of ethics here. There are more than enough customers for everyone. Getting ahead at the expense of others is just wrong. What goes around, comes around.

Sadly some owners have no plan of action on how to prevent and overcome staff turnover when they experience turnover . Many try to recover by hiring any one just to fill their chairs,while others struggle to find a replacement.

The best way to protect your business and the livelihoods of your other team members is to first identify and prevent the causes of turnover and then fight back.

The following tips are not designed to hinder the livelihoods of hairdressers, quite the opposite, these tips are designed to not only insure job security, but also give you the owner and hairdresser the opportunity to grow in a professional and positive salon environment as well as create a demand for our services so we can raise prices to combat rising business costs. Turnover affects everyone.

Follow these five tips:

Hire The right People — you should place all newcomers on a six month probationary period and make sure their employment is at-will which means you can let them go at any time and that they can quit at any time. Make sure they share your vision and goals.

Prevention — why are they leaving you? Do you have an employee handbook? Did you provide a positive and professional salon environment? Did you implement a salon training program? During their six month probationary period did you find out if they shared your goals and team concepts. Sometimes as owners we also have to share in the blame for staff turnover.

Employee handbook – did you clearly define your salon’s expectations to your new staff member? Did you provide them with terms of employment? Did you add a provision that all phone numbers and addresses of your clients are the property of your salon and will be cause for immediate dismissal and legal action?

Fight Back — if your stylist leaves and take phone number and addresses without your permission?  Fight back by sending all his or hers  customers a very nice letter stating we want to keep you as a customer and make them an offer they can’t refuse?

Build the Reputation of Your salon — not the reputation of the hairdresser. Work hard to win the loyalty of your customers by staying in touch regularly.

Leadership — you have to earn the trust and loyalty of your team by working hard to make them successful. Create conditions that foster loyalty. Let your staff know you really care. Excellence does start at the top.

Contingency Plan — make sure you continue to seek applicants, prepare letter to customers, and protect your customer lists.

For more complete information about this topic and more refer to my educational books and read the table of contents. Click here.

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