Instead of getting caught up in what's wrong with salons, let's focus on showing them how to be right.
We seem to want to pin a label on each kind of salon out there. At a recent gathering of nail technicians, the phrase “non standard salon” was being bandied about. It was the new favored term for what has been long referred to as a “discount salon” (which was coined by NAILS eight years ago not to describe bad salons, but to describe salons whose prices were less than half the national average). The techs at this meeting had developed several characteristics of a “non standard salon,” including poor sanitation, using illegal products, and techs not being able to communicate. Although it’s useful to have terms, I worry that we’re getting off track by focusing on much on what some salons are doing wrong. And I don’t think the term is fair or workable. Frankly, if I was a salon owner today, the thing I’d want to be is not standard!
We can’t really define non-standard until we define “standard.” But I say, forget about both those questions. What I’d like to recommend is that we put aside the discussion of these salons, regardless of what we call them, let’s share the best practices of the best salons and inspire one another. Let’s help the salons that are struggling and lift them up.
Let’s shift our focus to a discussion of good salons and what the characteristics of those are. They should be fairly easy, straightforward characteristics.
A good salon pays attention to what ifs customers want. If that means fast manicures and low prices, so be it. If that means high ambiance and prices reflective of that, so be it.
A good salon abides by the laws and regulations for this profession.
A good salon is clean.
A good salon is staffed by professionals who can respond to clients’ needs and wants. Those professionals may be competitive in their business, but they have no desire to see other salons or nail technicians fail.
At a good salon, the services rendered cause no pain, and should make the client feel good.
If we’re going to label, let’s label the good stuff.