1 November 2015
Salon Corporation, Salon Lifestyle Business or Just Survival
The Salon Corporation
I am lucky enough to have visited and spoken to thousands of salon owners over the years. Many have a salon vision to own and operate a group of salons. I was one of them. When I set up GREAT hairdressing the salon vision was to have 25 salons in 5 years. We got to 8 before I came to my senses, and we made a plan to reduce to four, one owned and 3 operated with either business partners or franchises. We have sold 2 salons and franchised a third, and merged two of them For us we made the decision to change our salon vision from corporation dream to lifestyle reality.
What caused the C change. The reality running one salon is not easy, and running a group of salons just multiplies the issues, even going from one salon to two represents major changes and challenges. Few salons manage to grow into multi-site groups. Mainly because this is a people business, to grow your group you need the right people at the helm of each salon, and the right training for these people. As well as the people you need the right systems. You also need to have a proven financial model, a successful salon or salon group needs to know their numbers, rent, wages, pro spend etc. A great team and location is not enough. The numbers need to stack up. At GREAT hairdressing will make more money out of the four salons than we ever made out of the eight, and the idea of employing 100’s of stylists and the associated infrastructure has lost its appeal as far as return on investment.
Salon-iQ gives multi-site operators a distinct advantage, because it was designed with groups in mind. Instant visibility on how your salons and teams are performing, real time, anywhere. So if your vision is for a corporation, then without Salon-iQ it will never become a reality. New salon corporations need a technological advantage, which is what Salon-iQ delivers.
Salons as a Lifestyle Business
So some salon owners do it for the lifestyle, understanding they may never be rich but can at least “be their own boss” drive a nice car, all be it probably leased and no have to answer to anyone. Often they fail to realise that becoming a salon owner means suddenly you need to me an expert in marketing, finance, health and safety, legal matters, and personnel. Often the salon owner is making less than other team members, working all hours or even still the busiest stylist or therapist, basically propping up the other team members. So it ends up becoming a case of
I see too many salons in this state, “motivated by their next VAT return “. Struggling with their salons, looking for a magic bullet. Stressed and not having fun. Cursing team members that leave and take their clients (quickly forgetting how they started their salons). They loose their focus and can’t see the wood for the trees.
Time to Pause – If this is you then in it is time to pause. Time to remember why you went into business and what you want the business to do for you. There is a common theme that runs through my advice – go back to basics.