Back to Business: Phil Collins of HairUncut
We put some key question to Phil Collins of HairUncut about the measures that salon owners can take now during lockdown and when it’s finally lifted.
Hi Phil, are there any tips you can offer salon owners to help them get through this lockdown?
It’s an incredibly difficult time for everyone. My advice is to try and keep on social media as much as possible. Continue to post on all your social media channels and engage with your clients. It doesn’t have to be about hair, use your creativity and encourage your team to do short hair tips and tricks, as it will keep your team engaged and motivate them. All our clients have more time to browse your website and social media channels and they want to feel engaged, where possible use a little humour as clients want to smile during these challenging times.
What measures can salon owners take now to ensure their salons are ready to reopen when the lockdown ends?
I would strongly recommend a detailed plan here. Try where you can work backwards from a potential opening. Then make a list of things you would like to implement. This may be a soiree type client opening for when you reopen. It may be an opening offer, or you might want to start to ask clients to pre-pay for their hair and work on a first come first serve basis. Make sure you have a WhatsApp set up so you can engage with your team and plan your rota for when you reopen in case you want to add additional days and team members where applicable. Make sure you are fully stocked where applicable and your suppliers are ready to take orders.
What are the main changes that we will see initially when salons reopen?
It’s quite difficult to tell, clients will be desperate to have their hair done but equally they will want to get out their house and will be glad of a relaxing, friendly catch up with their favourite salon and its team. It’s essential to also be cautious as clients may be a little short of funds and somewhat wary of spending what they would have normally spent, so we all need to bear this is in mind. I think it’s a possibility some salons may not be lucky enough to reopen their doors, so this needs to be thought about. Many clients may have taken the decision without choice to colouring their own hair, this always needs to be handled correctly, as whilst this may be an opportunity to charge for potential colour corrections, clients may feel embarrassed and upset.
Can you highlight the key areas upon which salons need to focus when they reopen to ensure the business will thrive?
Social media has never been so crucial, make sure your clients are fully updated with everything that is going on with your salon and the team
- Getting their database fully updated
- Make sure the salon is spotless and fully stocked
- Staff motivation, a team meeting is absolutely prior to opening where possible
- Keep a close eye on what your salons in your area are doing. It is essential to monitor their social media channels and their messaging to their clients
- Think carefully about the time of year, in the UK when salons are allowed to reopen, we will be entering the summer, so make sure that your messaging and your social media platforms plan for potential opportunities that are relevant to summer. For example, colour trends and specific products etc.
- Consider some form of complimentary service for NHS personnel
How can you ensure staff are confident and as upbeat as possible when they return to the workplace?
This is where effective and permitted communication is key, your team must feel engaged and fully in the loop on every level. I would also suggest an individual call with all team members just before reopening. Keep positive and be upbeat and be sympathetic whilst exciting the team about how busy the salon will be upon reopening.
What lessons has the lock down taught you and are there things you will now do differently when it comes to running your business?
I think all of us have learnt some key business and life lessons during this difficult time. I think making sure that the most basic systems are always in place and working effectively. Making sure that all your marketing material, website and social media is always effective.