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SITUATION: Every time the owner of my spa schedules a service with me she doesn’t pay (not even a tip!) I’m upset because I could be working with a paying client during her service. What should I do?
SITUATION REVIEW: This can be a touchy and even an uncomfortable situation if we allow it! It's quite common for owners to receive services from their team members for one of two reasons. The first reason is they might be booking services because they truly need them- naturally, they would want them to be done at their own salon or spa. Secondly, they might be periodically using these services as a form of quality control. After all, it’s important for owners to experience services from a client’s perspective. This can help them determine the quality of the service being performed and/or provided.
SOLUTION: Finding yourself in this situation doesn’t have to be difficult or uncomfortable. Depending on your compensation structure, if you’re a commission- based employee, a heart-to-heart conversation is warranted. My personal recommendation when having this heart-to-heart is to remember the golden rule: it’s not what you say, it’s how you say it! Express to the owner that you truly enjoy providing their services and that you find it valuable to have them experience the service first hand so they can experience the service from a salon or spa customer’s perspective. Mention that you welcome their suggestions or recommendations to improve the overall client experience. After explaining your understanding, explain the challenge that you’re facing: since these services are being booked during regular schedule booking times, you’re not able to book a paying customer, resulting in personal revenue loss and salon revenue loss. Explain that you would love to brainstorm an alternate plan of action, like providing these services before or after your shift. Another helpful tip is to remember body language also sends a message. Try and relax and remove any personal feelings or fears you might be having about having this conversation.
GROWTH OPPORTUNITY: Having an open conversation with your owner will not only eliminate your pain point in lost revenue, it can help build a strong working relationship. Honesty is truly the best policy, and in this situation, is the best course fo action to clear the air.
Photo: Shutterstock | Pressmaster
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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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