Modern Salon - February 2012 - (Page 80)
MODERN BIZ BUILDER
By Victoria Wurdinger
The consultation is where success starts. And where it can come to a screeching halt.
s a service provider, your role in client service and satisfaction begins with the consultation. Most consultation experts stress listening skills. Getting your clients to talk about something worth listening to, however, starts with your ability to effectively ask purposeful, open-ended questions.
The Big Exchange
At Beautiful Hair Company in Chappaqua, New York, owner Franco Marino considers the first-time consultation so important he books half an hour for it, charges $45 (his staff charges $25) and does not deduct the cost from the service. His extensive consultation is more like an interview, and begins with an official form including questions like: • How much time do you spend styling your hair? • Does anyone else influence how you wear your hair style? • Are you open to change? • What is your occupation? Of course, the form also asks about previous chemical services, frequency of shampooing, time spent styling and allergic reactions. All these are just preludes to the conversation, which naturally includes discussion about likes, dislikes and dream styles. Another biggie: If you could change just one thing about your hair, what would it be? “Most stylists think the consultation should reveal what the client wants to do with her hair,” notes Marino. “It should be about what you envision for that client, based on her features, skin tone, eye color and the tone of her hair. Always make the client feel like you are there to listen and help her move in a particular image direction. Make it clear you are interested in a long-term relationship, not a quick fix.” The advantage of his lengthy approach, he says, is that it does establish a mutually beneficial relationship, and the client understands every decision takes into consideration the hair’s quality and health.
What Clients Want
owner of Wavelengths Hair and Nail Salon in Santa Fe, New Mexico, says he always asks about as much hair and life history as he can, as well as any changes or desires. “Then I conjure up a plan and time schedule,” says Menzor. Naturally, maintenance and upkeep is key to success, which is why you should always ask about home styling ability, available time and the desire to keep one look or change styles frequently.
80 February 2012 modernsalon.com
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