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What Would You Do?

We've asked three industry experts to help us out with a reader's problem. Read on to find out what they think - and if you'd do the same.

"Although I've been running my salon for two years, recently I've found that my staff have become a bit jaded - talking to each other instead of clients and not seeming very fussed about customer service in general. I'm a bit of a one-man band when it comes to the day-to-day jobs, so I'm finding it hard to get everything else done as well as make time to keep them motivated and doing what they should - any suggestions?"

Keeping a team inspired and motivated can be difficult, and more importantly keeping yourself inspired when juggling so many things whilst running a business can be hard. 

Taking some time out to educate and motivate your team is useful. Try booking out a conference or education day as it will be a great way of stepping back and really focusing on the messages you want to send out to your team and re-focus on your salon's goals and service standards. 

Your product company may be able to help with education. Alternatively, you could consider having an educator come into the salon to deliver the messages you want to get across to everyone in the team, rather than just sending a few on them on a course and you not being able to measure what they've learnt. 

Try putting a suggestions board up in your staff room where the team can pin any ideas up too; it's a great, informal way of understanding your teams' thoughts and needs. 
Robert Eaton, Russell Eaton Salons. 


Lead by example and don't let problems fester. As soon as you see the problem arising, deal with it. If you don't deal with an issue straight away, it will get worse. Be strong from the start and address the situation head on. 

The other thing is to reward wherever possible. Sometimes we forget to praise the good, and praising good work is a very strong motivator. If the issue is about one or two individuals not being motivated, talk to them. There can be more to the situation than meets the eye. Communication is key. It's crucial to have a clear customer service policy in place. If your team do not know what you expect, they cannot deliver. 

Finally, if you are exceptionally busy, then encourage the people that are really great at leadership to share and help with the other team members. Good attitude breeds good attitude. Delegate more to the people you trust to motivate the others. .Remember, the more people feel valued, the more they want to give. 
Tracey Devine-Smith, Affinage Global Ambassador. 

To get your team motivated and encourage them to provide the very best customer service, offer feedback; it's extremely important and allows your staff to fell encouraged and valued. Thank your team members for the things they have done well and you will notice a big effect on their morale. If they're not doing so well at something, provide them with targets. 

Targets are great for allowing team members to grow and will also encourage a bit of friendly competition in the salon, all while effectively strengthening team bonds. 

Holding one-to-one reviews with each member of your team can also motivate them. You can do this monthly, every few months or even annually; however you choose, reviews are a great way to keep team members encouraged and allow them to discuss any problems they might be having that you can help them with. 
Mark Weston, Muse of London.