What not to do as a stylist ...

Well dear readers, it's been too long between posts, so time to get back to it!

I found an article on the web and think it's important to talk about it, even though the link seems to have disappeared. It's about a person who was not a client of the salon she visited to have a botched bleach regrowth fixed. She had tried to do it herself. The hairdresser made a terrible fuss about the state of her hair and made her feel very bad.

Even though we might think the client was crazy to attempt such a job herself we must remain professional at all times. It's not in our best interests to humiliate the client, she feels bad enough already!  Anyone like to share similar stories? Just post a comment below.



Happy Christmas!

As another year draws to an end many of us will have time for reflection. Whilst I think I have achieved a good deal this year, I always believe I should have / could have done more! I'm trying not to be too hard on myself so that I can enjoy time with family and friends during the holiday season. I think it's essential to have a complete break, so as to return rested and full of enthusiasm for another busy year.

For those of you who find Christmas a challenging time as I do, I wish you peace and comfort. When my beautiful son was tragically killed on the road twenty years ago in mid December, I felt my world had come to an end. In time, I learned that to honour his memory I must take courage and live the best life I could, drawing strength from family and dear friends. My two little grandchildren are a source of great joy.

Last Saturday evening I had dinner with seven of my son's friends. One of the boys organised the event, they brought me flowers and it was wonderful to hear how they were flourishing, some with young families and also in their work lives, such fine young men. Many stories were told of times past, and it was wonderful for my daughter and myself to re-connect with Stuart's friends and to know that they will always remember him.

I wish you all a safe and happy Christmas, and a healthy and prosperous New Year. See you in 2015!

Best wishes,


Quotations that inspire!

Hello readers,

For many years I've enjoyed jotting down little snippets of poems, stories or sayings that I want to remember and like to re read from time to time. Here, I share some with you, and hope that you see in them the wisdom that I have found. Unfortunately, in most of the quotations, I'm unable to credit the writer. If you can help me out there, I'd love to hear from you.

  • You're not what you think you are, you are what you think, you are.
  • Take the reigns of responsibility firmly within your grip.
  • It's not the man who knows the most who has the most to say, it's not the man who has the most who gives the most away.
  • You are what you eat!
  • Take each other for better or worse, but not for granted!
  • Words of a trapeze artist to a learner: Throw your heart over the bar, and your body will follow.
  • Only ignorant people know everything!
  • The best thing a man can do for his children is to love their mother.
  • Nurture your mind with great thoughts, for you will never go any higher than you think - Benjamin Disraeli.
  • One of the most difficult things to give away is kindness … it is usually returned.
  • Never try to make anyone like yourself. You know and God knows that one of you is enough!
  • The difference between perseverance and obstinacy is that one often comes from a strong will, and the other from a strong won't - Henry Ward Beecher.
  • An Oriental saying: Don't push the river, let it flow.

Have a great week folks. Best wishes,


Superior client care

Dear readers,

This week I'd like to share some tips on customer service with you from serviceexcellence.com.au. These tips are universal in application and therefore don't solely apply to the hairdressing industry. The advice here is relevant for anyone who operates a service industry business. If you follow these tips your clients will want to keep coming back to you!

The following list gives top tips that will help you to focus on the most important elements of customer service excellence:

•    Always Focus on Service before anything else
•    Give the Best experience possible
•    Create a unique customer experience
•    Use the Customer as a marketing vehicle
•    Always remember that you are Selling “WOW”
•    Always improve on your service
•    Always respect your customer (time and opinion)
•    Measure their satisfaction and engagement
•    Educate, encourage and use incentives on employees to deliver service
•    Differentiate your Brand from competition
•    Know your customer base (segmentation)
•    Integrate your operations processes into your customer marketing strategies
•    Understand that Customer Satisfaction is based on loyalty, identity, values, and relationships
•    Special Interactions keep customers coming back
•    Solve problems quickly and turn complainers into advocates
•    Customer Service agents must have the authority to make decisions
•    Listen to your customers; Change their attitudes, and fix their problems
•    Measure your relationships, and refine your processes, and proactively solve and prevent the same mistakes from happening again. (Continuous improvement)
•    Improve your supplier relationships, and hold them to the same standard as your customers do
•    Exceed expectations and treat customers as if you would treat a guest in your own home.
•    Spread the word – promote your brand promise by empowering your employees to act as ambassadors
•    Hire good employees from the start; study your culture, and find the right fit
•    Always remember what your corporate values and purpose are, and set mission to that goal.
•    Tell the customer the truth, and love what you do
•    Personalize your service to meet your customers’ needs
•    Listen to Customers; Take appropriate action; keep it simple
•    “The most common thing about common sense is it’s so uncommon”
•    Leaders should stay involved in the business, and respect employees and customers
•    5 P’s of Customer Service Excellence – Process; Product; Presentation; Price and most importantly People!


Best wishes for a great week.


Some inspirational stories ...

Dear readers,

This week I'm sharing five inspirational stories sent to me by my LinkedIn friend Ken Moshier. Ken is a stylist and educator who hails from San Diego, California and has been a welcome support as I navigate the exciting field of coaching salon apprentices in the essential art of client care. So thanks Ken for sharing these stories. I really enjoyed reading them and hope you do too.

Five Short Stories About The Way We Treat People.
They could also be called Five Easy Lessons about the way to treat people - An easy read to think about -

1. First Story: About the Cleaning Lady.

During my second month of college, our professor gave us a pop quiz. I was a conscientious student and had breezed through the questions until I read the last one: "What is the first name of the woman who cleans the school?"

Surely this was some kind of joke. I had seen the cleaning woman several times. She was tall, dark-haired and in her 50's, but how would I know her name?

I handed in my paper, leaving the last question blank. Just before class ended, one student asked if the last question would count toward our quiz grade. "Absolutely, " said the professor, "In your careers, you will meet many people. All are significant, they deserve your attention and care, even if all you do is smile and say "hello."

I've never forgotten that lesson... I also learned her name was Dorothy.

2. Second Story - Pickup in the Rain. 

One night, at 11:30 p.m., an older African American Woman was standing on the side of an Alabama highway trying to endure a lashing rainstorm. Her car had broken down and she desperately needed a ride. Soaking wet, she decided to flag down the next car.

A young white man stopped to help her, generally unheard of in those conflict-filled 1960's. The man took her to safety, helped her get assistance and put her into a taxi cab.

She seemed to be in a big hurry, but wrote down his address and thanked him. Seven days went by and a knock came on the man's door. To his surprise, a giant console colour TV was delivered to his home. A special note was attached.

It read: "Thank you so much for assisting me on the highway the other night. The rain drenched not only my clothes, but also my spirits.then you came along. Because of you, I was able to make it to my dying husband's bedside just before he passed away... God bless you for helping me and unselfishly serving others."

Mrs. Nat King Cole.

3 - Third Story - Always remember those who serve. 

In the days when an ice cream sundae cost much less, a 10-year-old boy entered a hotel coffee shop and sat at a table. A waitress put a glass of water in front of him.

"How much is an ice cream sundae?" he asked. "Fifty cents," replied the waitress. The little boy pulled his hand out of his pocket and studied the coins in it. "Well, how much is a plain dish of ice cream?" he inquired.

By now more people were waiting for a table and the waitress was growing impatient, "thirty-five cents," she brusquely replied. The little boy again counted his coins. "I'll have the plain ice cream," he said.

The waitress brought the ice cream, put the bill on the table and walked away. The boy finished the ice cream, paid the cashier and left. When the waitress came back, she began to cry as she wiped down the table. There, placed neatly beside the empty dish, were two nickels and five pennies.

You see, he couldn't have the sundae, because he had to have enough left to leave her a tip.

4 - Fourth Story - The obstacle in our path. 

In ancient times, a king had a boulder placed on a roadway. Then he hid himself and watched to see if anyone would remove the huge rock. Some of the king's wealthiest merchants and courtiers came by and simply walked around it. Many loudly blamed the king for not keeping the roads clear, but none did anything about getting the stone out of the way.

Then a peasant came along carrying a load of vegetables. Upon approaching the boulder, the peasant laid down his burden and tried to move the stone to the side of the road. After much pushing and straining, he finally succeeded.

After the peasant picked up his load of vegetables, he noticed a purse lying in the road where the boulder had been. The purse contained many gold coins and a note from the king indicating that the gold was for the person who removed the boulder from the roadway.

The peasant learned what many of us never understand! Every obstacle presents an opportunity to improve our condition.

5 - Fifth Story - Giving when it counts... 

Many years ago, when I worked as a volunteer at a hospital, I got to know a little girl named Liz who was suffering from a rare and serious disease. Her only chance of recovery appeared to be a blood transfusion from her 5-year old brother, who had miraculously survived the same disease and had developed the antibodies needed to combat the illness.

The doctor explained the situation to her little brother, and asked the little boy if he would be willing to give his blood to his sister. I saw him hesitate for only a moment before taking a deep breath and saying, "Yes I'll do it if it will save her."

As the transfusion progressed, he lay in bed next to his sister and smiled, as we all did, seeing the colour returning to her cheek. Then his face grew pale and his smile faded, he looked up at the doctor and asked with a trembling voice, "Will I start to die right away?”

Being young, the little boy had misunderstood the doctor, he thought he was going to have to give his sister all of his blood in order to save her.

Truly inspirational stories I'm sure you'll agree. Have a great week everyone!

Best wishes, 




Will this catch on? What do you think?

Hi readers, welcome to my blog Salon Corner!

Having just completed my eBook on customer service for hairdressing apprentices, I was very interested to read the following article online, suggesting that maybe a talk-free hair salon might be a good idea for some people. It ties in with my advice on how to read the body language of the client, so that we're not constantly chatting to them, if it's clear they just want to sit quietly and relax during their visit. 

I'm not sure a whole salon devoted to silence would catch on. Take a look at this article and see what you think. Is it a good idea?

Let me know your thoughts!