Break the Habit That Eats up Salon Profit – by Tim Howard, chief innovations officer at Vish

Expecting your team to look their best should be part of the employment contract, but that doesn’t mean you have to subsidise their colour habit. Yes, you want them looking smokin’ hot because every flick of their hair broadcasts the style and expertise of your brand. But it could be costing you a lot more than you think.

When I still had my salons, I had a policy where my team could do their hair as often as they wanted for a flat fee equivalent to around £10, and they could extend this to friends and family. But I had a big team and I suddenly realised they (and lots of their friends) were making dramatic changes every two or three weeks, ratcheting up £15 to £20 a time in colour costs. It added up to a huge chunk of money, and my paltry £10 charge meant I was constantly out of pocket. I realised I had to find a way that they always looked their best without eating up my profits. 

Product Vampires

A friends and family scheme is an important way to make your team feel valued as well as encouraging them to be on-trend, but what many salon owners are unaware of are the big stock losses it can lead to. If you ever wondered why you spend so much with your supplier but see so little profit in the bank, your friends and family could be one of the reasons. Maybe not as much as over-mixing or missed services, but it adds up.

Be Strong

My costs were rising so quickly my only option was to have that awkward conversation with my team, and yes, I was worried it would undermine morale. As any business owner knows, it’s very easy for the culture to flip from buzzing to demoralised in an instant. But fortunately I had Vish by then. That meant I could track every gram dispensed by the team and instead of charging a flat £10, I had them pay for the colour. It wasn’t much per stylist or for their friends, just a few pounds, but it helped substantially stem the flood of unpaid colour out of the salon.

Agree on a Number

It’s important to be fair, especially if you want tranquillity in the workplace. I still let the team do their hair whenever they want but we agreed on a limit on how many friends and family they could do in the salon. Meanwhile all product use was tracked by Vish and charged for, which stopped the loss on inventory. Vish even allows you to add a small mark-up to guarantee you are recouping inventory spend and a bit more, especially with friends and family clients if not your team.

There are certain habits you want to encourage in your team, such as re-weighing on Vish and always looking their best. But it doesn’t need to be a cost to the business. It just needs to be Vish.

The post Break the Habit That Eats up Salon Profit – by Tim Howard, chief innovations officer at Vish appeared first on The Salon Magazine.