In my opinion, there has always been an unwritten rule as to what topic of conversation is acceptable or not acceptable in a salon. I believe the topics of religion, sex, and politics should be off limits. It’s always best to avoid getting into conversations with clients who may not agree with your opinion. I do have a few clients that I am on a more friendly basis with and who would never be offended by my views, but for argument sake, it’s best to let sleeping dogs lie!
TERESA SHACKLETON, Tee’s Nail NV, Kitchener, Ontario, Canada
I do talk politics, but I am very careful. I have a few clients where I have to bite my tongue because of their ignorance and prejudice. Most of my clients are pretty open-minded and we can discuss things. Sometimes they even enlighten me on things I did not know. But you just know who the ones are you can’t talk politics with. If I find them becoming hostile, I change the subject.
LYNNETTE MADDEN, Salon 29 at Main, East Greenville, Pa.
Just before the November election, my hairdresser was working on a client who was loudly discussing the candidate she supported for the election and I was doing a client’s nails across the room. My client became very agitated when she heard the conversation and began talking very loudly against what the other client was saying. I changed the topic quickly because I could see this turning out badly for all. I have now implemented a no politics policy at my salon. We change the subject if it does come up and all agree to disagree if necessary.
SHANNON CHOMANCZUK, A Polished Image, New Windsor, N.Y.
I do not talk politics with clients. I used to and it cost me clients. Because my political views did not match theirs, they quit coming to me for services. Even if I agree with the client’s political opinion, I still do not talk politics because someone in the waiting area could overhear and get angry enough to stop coming to me.
KATHERINE FAHRIG, Panache, St. Louis, Mo.
I talk about almost anything my guest wants to talk about. It is her time to relax, vent, or just get something off her chest.
KALA BASTION, Jillian’s Hairdesign, Princeton, Ill.