There’s nothing that brings us joy like a successful salon – we love peeping every aesthetic and feeling the makeover vibes first-hand. While not every hair biz has staying power, to find out what goes into a great salon and the recipe for success, we tapped Joey Silvestera, Founder of Blackstones salon in NYC for his salon gospel.
Before you figure out what’s needed to make a salon success, you need to define what success means to you. Not only does “success” have very different meanings depending on who you talk to, it can also change depending on what phase of business you are in. “Do you want to grow staff and revenue?” questions Joey, who personally prioritizes education, which he credits with helping him achieve success. “This means education about services provided (for stylists, assistants, and support staff) and also education about the product being used in the salon. I think the salon experience for clients is also very important, but in order to do this, you need to properly train your staff. Success also involves constantly evolving on all fronts and staying current yet individualistic,” he clarifies.
Be Known Yet Accessible
Perhaps the most important factor contributing to a salon’s success is the ability to grow on all fronts, from increasing your staff to growing your clients. To facilitate growth, Joey recommends making your presence known while being accessible. The goal is to keep both staff and clients close so that they want to grow with you. “As an owner, you need to stay close with your team. This involves knowing your stylists and their workings, being close to the support staff so they can support the stylists, and having a known presence with the clients,” says Joey.
Schedule Feedback Meetings
Salon owners who are facing challenges can begin to turn their luck around by identifying what’s going wrong – when everything starts to fall apart, this can be a challenge in itself, but once the problem is identified and confirmed, it’s that much easier to solve it. To recognize challenges as they come (or before they can make an impact) Joey recommends one-on-one reviews with staff at least every six months—afterall, stylists are the eyes and ears of your biz. “Get and give feedback on how to improve and make upgrades across the board,” he suggests.
Happiness is an Indicator of Success
Measuring success is more than profit and loss. Joey notes, “Happy clients and happy employees are a big marker of success.” Happiness is also a great predictor for a salon’s chance of sustained success – because no one wants to work at or visit a salon where everyone is miserable! Afterall, it’s a place people go to feel good.
Remember that a Salon is a Team Effort
“It’s easy to forget, as an owner, that everything is a team effort,” says Joey. “You have to be self-aware and remain unselfish,” he continues. This team effort mindset also applies to stylists. “Stylists need to remember that all clients coming to the salon are everyone’s clients; you can’t just be focused on your own clients and ignore the others that are coming into the salon. It’s easy to just sit and wait for your own clients and cater to them, but stylists also need to be hospitable to everyone and make sure everyone is comfortable,” he says. To create a special experience for clients, encourage that all staff members pay them attention. Ultimately, a salon should feel like a community.
Rely on Your Village
While there’s no one profile for a salon owner, Joey credits his can’t sit still personality with helping him achieve success in his business. “I always try to evolve with education inside and outside the salon. I also look to my staff, as well as clients and other business owners, to become inspired on a daily basis. It takes me being more aware, but it’s very important,” says Joey. While he’s based in NY (where the foot traffic is overwhelming) he credits clients, staff and friends for the lion share of his success. “I try to constantly check in with everyone surrounding me and make sure that the business is thriving and that everyone is happy,” he continues.
Now that you know why salons succeed, CHECK OUT what makes them fail.