SITUATION: I own a spa and every holiday season there is at least one fight between my employees or hostility between me and my employees because everyone wants to take time off at the same time. How can I make it less stressful this year?
SITUATION REVIEW: There’s no doubt about it, managing a slew of time-off requests for the upcoming holiday season can be a stressful time for most salon or spa owners and managers. Let’s face it: no one wants to be the heavy and tell team members that their request to spend time with their loved ones during the holidays is being denied. The holiday season is one of the busiest times of year for our industry and creating a balance between employee satisfaction and customer care can be a difficult balancing act for anyone!
SOLUTION: To help avoid the stress and defuse any hostility between team members here are a few helpful tips to take into consideration when developing a well-rounded holiday vacation strategy.
I suggest that you first take into consideration the number of team members needed to accommodate the high traffic demands. Once you have your formula you will want to consider what type of policy will work best for your salon or spa’s culture.
Here are 5 options to consider:
First come, first serve- This is the most common method for managing holiday time-off requests. This approach is beneficial for all parties as everyone knows well in advance who will be around during the holidays.
Seniority- A more traditional approach, team members that have been committed and faithful to the company are rewarded with the first right to request time off.
Rotating schedule- Creating a rotating schedule can make it fair and balanced for all team members. Offer team members the option to switch holidays with co-workers to provide flexibility and help keep team members happy.
The team decides- Using what I refer to as the “transfer technique” is a powerful way to empower team members to help in the decision-making process. This approach is one sure way to remove the stress and or hostility around holiday time-off. Share the salon or spa needs with your team and explain how many team members are needed to accommodate the busy holiday season. Empower the team to decided how to handle time-off requests based on this information.
Blackouts- Many businesses that have high demands during the holidays adopt the blackout period approach. Employees know up front that during a specific time frame time-off requests are not considered.
GROWTH OPPORTUNITY: Time-off during the holidays is an emotional time. Having a clear picture of your business needs during this season and having a strong holiday vacation strategy can get everyone back on track and focus on enjoying the holiday season.
Photo: Shutterstock | Joana Lopes
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Patti Wanamaker brings 21 years of experience to the Milady team where she currently serves as an Implementation and Training Specialist. Her intimate understanding of the salon, school, and beauty industry comes from 18 years of hands-on experience as a multi-faceted training specialist, including 8 years of salon and spa ownership of 3 salons with annual sales of $5 million. Her experience in all 3 areas of our industry allows her to think outside the box and develop innovative training that inspires and empowers beauty industry professionals.
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