An Ode to Salon Leaders
Running the business of a hair salon is hard. The days that turn into weeks and months are filled with to-do lists that never seem to end, and when one issue is solved, there's another issue right behind it. As the bedrock for the business, the Salon Leader works tirelessly with a high level of energy to make sure every guest leaves happy, every stylist is supported, and that the business owners are satisfied with daily results. There is pressure from all angles to perform at a high level of professionalism, patience, perseverance, and passion. While alliteration is fun, the responsibility of the Salon Leader is one that isn't recognized as often as it needs to be. And this could be said for many management roles in an array of organizations, however, the salon environment is special.
It is a place where people come to feel and look their best. It is a place where artists showcase their work and thrive on a stage that we call behind the chair. And there is an orchestra that plays their instruments in the salon in the form of hair stylists, assistants, receptionists, skin therapists, massage therapists, manicurists, and shampoo techs. All of whom require that the conductor stay poised, relaxed, and engaged in the symphony of the salon. But the fact of the matter is, the Salon Leader is tired! Exhausted actually, at the magnitude of responsibility. Yet somehow, it looks flawlessly executed.
However, the great part about being a Salon Leader is seeing all of the hard work pay off through the joy of their team reaching their goals; the clients who rave about their stylist and refer their friends and family; the assistant who learns so much in a day that they leave the building on a cloud of enthusiasm; the business owner who calls and gives a brief job well done. At the end of every day, there is a relief that every difficult conversation, every compliment, and every pat on the back led to a day of accomplishment, even if not all of the tasks were crossed off the list.
Having been a Salon Leader for nearly a decade, I've realized that it's important that we give ourselves a round of applause, daily, for supporting people and growing the business. Regardless of how disgruntled people get, or how badly you feel like you're doing, remember to tell yourself that you're doing a great job, and you're doing the best you can. Protect your joy and find ways to fill up the cup that you joyfully pour into others. Listen to motivational speakers, read books that enliven your enthusiasm, and take time to recover from the long weeks of giving yourself out. Know that without you, the salon could not breathe. You are the heartbeat, the endless roots, the core of an industry that needs you to help them help other people. You are doing an amazing job, Salon Leader. Keep up the great work.