Time Management in the Salon
Time – if you think about it is a very precious luxury yet most of us take it for granted.
We talk about time; we waste it, we disrespect it and we’re sometimes oblivious to the fact that we’ll one day run out of it.
I believe this applies to everyone and every industry in the world. It’s an issue we all struggle with yet very few of us gain control of the situation and say, ‘hey, time is precious, time is money, time is valuable.’
I’m applying my thoughts to one of the most artistic, creative and time-poor industries of all.
No time in the hair and beauty industry
This industry is so fast paced that salon-owners, stylists, estheticians and barbers will regularly fall behind; not only in work, but in their personal life. This doesn’t only affect their clients, but also their partners, parents and friends who are the very people they should be giving most of their time to.
This doesn’t mean to say their clients aren’t important, it just means that certain time is allocated throughout the day or week for their clients and the rest of the time should be cherished as ‘downtime.’
For me; downtime is the only time to relax, destress and love the ones around me.
I spend every day talking to people in the hair and beauty industry who struggle with time. Yes, during the day time-management can be a struggle but most of all they struggle during the evening. In a crazy, exciting world of social-media platforms and mobile technology some of my clients and peers in the industry are constantly contacted during their downtime. Why is this? It’s simple, that’s the time when hard-working professionals are free to ask questions and book appointments for the services they can’t live without. They’re far too busy during the day to call and make the appointment so they do it after dinner or after they’ve put the kids to bed after their first glass of red.
They don’t mean to bother anyone – it’s just the only time they have, right?
How can you make the change?
I can’t package up time or tell you the exact value of yours, but I can explain how you can manage it better. The answers been around for 25 years and even more so now in a world of mind-blowing technology.
It’s too expensive you say!
Is it really when you calculate the value of your time? Take 5 minutes, if you can find the time and work out what an hour of your time is worth. Now calculate how much time you spend responding to client’s emails, Facebook and Instagram messages. Now estimate the value of lost appointments because you didn’t have time to respond and the client booked elsewhere. Are you shocked yet? Now you have this value in your head it’s much easier to comprehend what you’re worth.
Now I’m not suggesting you never respond to your clients again. What I’m recommending is you invest some of your value in powerful technology that gives you the time back to do what you do best, being creative and loving the ones you’re with.
I believe there are a couple of ways to make this change and some will occasionally treat my suggestions as stepping stones. Let’s be honest; change can be uncomfortable, difficult or even scary, therefore slow manageable changes to your routine will be a welcomed alternative.
Give yourself access to your appointment book via your smart phone or tablet so you can easily manage your columns from home or anywhere in fact. Not only will it help plan your day/week but you’ll be able to provide your clients with quicker, more accurate responses to availability and not leave them waiting because your appointment books in the salon.
Treat yourself and your clients to the right online booking system for your business. Don’t worry, you won’t lose control of your appointment book if you chose the right system.
Promote and educate your clients so they know you’re online and understand how it will benefit them. This removes the disruption of midnight messages and gives your clients the premium facility of being able to search for their preferred service, time, and employee without delay.
Open all hours
At last count I discovered 40% of online bookings are made out of hours. This further highlights the need for a system that enables your business to be available 24/7. If you’re after even more benefits, just think of the potential new client base you can welcome by widening your footprint within the industry by taking advantage of the social media platforms that have to this point interrupted your downtime.
I expect you’re now asking yourself how many times I’ve mentioned the word ‘time?’ It’s 27 to be exact but it’s just that important.
Give value to your clients and in return they’ll value your time.