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Discover the solution to keeping the clients when a stylist leaves the Salon

Malcolm | December 5th, 2010

Many salon owners are afraid of their stylists moving on to the salon up the road or around the corner and taking all their clients with them, it raises the age old debate over just who the client belongs to.

For a start, if the stylist brings some clients with them when they arrive, then they should be documented and flagged. If, or when, the stylist leaves they are allowed to contact these original clients and let them know they’re leaving. The rest are salon clients, so it’s up to the salon owners to notify them that the stylist is leaving and give them the opportunity to rebook with another stylist in the salon.

However, as with much in life, theory rarely works in practice. The fact is, if you’re not giving clients a good enough reason to come back to your salon then you should expect them to move on with leaving stylists… Instead of moaning about it, focus on attracting more clients. “but you don’t understand” I hear you cry, “I’ve spent good money and resources attracting the clients for the stylists and they just take them with them when they leave” WRONG! I do understand, I’ve been there and had the sleepless nights wondering what to do about it when I see my profitability leave with the stylist and I’ve had to find a solution, the answer is twofold…

1              Make sure that you are providing an amazing, stimulating environment for your team to minimise them moving on in the first place

2              Create a system to ensure that clients are getting an amazing overall experience in your salon so that they have a reason to continue coming to you even when stylists move on.

It is as simple as that. Give your stylists and clients more reasons to stay than leave. So how do you do that?

Don’t forget that your team are people too. They have wants and needs which don’t always revolve around money, Take time to get to know them, I mean really get to know what motivates them, what ‘gets them going’.

What about your leadership? Is it strong guidance, or wishy washy? Are you fair and give out trust and respect to them? Do you understand them or have you forgotten what it was like working for someone else? Are you clear on where you are going with your business and do the team know this? This is just scratching the surface.

Next take a look at your clients, what do you do that makes the client feel welcome and special in your salon? How much communication do you have with them or is the stylist the only one that communicates with them either within or outside the salon? You NEED to be actively working on your client experiences, both when they are in the salon and also in-between visits. Give them every opportunity to keep coming to your salon and little choice to go elsewhere because they would not get the same level of service and attention they get from you. And if they do follow the leaving stylist, it doesn’t take them long to recognise that they were better off with your salon than the new one.

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