Blueprint of a First Year

Personnel Issues Are Getting the Better of Me

by NAILS Magazine | October 21, 2013 | Bookmark +

Month three of Graffiti Nail Bar’s new location has been more than a handful and to say it’s been interesting is an understatement. I’ve had a few manicurists inquire about working at GNB over the last month or so. I did finally make a decision about who the first manicurist would be and allowed her to start the 1st of October.


Well, to be honest, I’m not sure what to do to eliminate some problems with manicurists. I mean, I had a three-person panel interview and two other meetings including a skills assessment. As a booth renter, you’re supposed to supply your own products. Well I’m not sure she knows that. Now, because I make my own body scrubs and butters, I don’t mind if they use that for their pedicures since my clients pick from a variety of butters and scrubs for their services. I actually prefer it because it promotes my retail. When I saw her use my clear polish, cotton balls, and polish remover, I was confused. Then I thought to myself, oh crap, I’ve got to have that talk with her. Let me introduce you to the real Lauren Scales. I have a terrible attitude when I feel like certain things are just common sense and I don’t have any tact. So when I get ready to say to someone, “You’re supposed to have your own products, stay out of my stuff,” that’s exactly what I’ll say. So to avoid being completely offensive and unprofessional, I’ll go about it very passive aggressively, which is still not solving the problem. At this point I’m at a complete loss for any possible solutions that involve me, so my client that helped interview her said she would help me come up with a plan to either fix the problem or terminate completely.


Aside from the product controversy, the lady doesn’t “go” with the salon aesthetically and that is very important to me. People who work at GNB don’t have to have the same style, so long as they have some, or one, or a little. I thought I could look over it because she’s very talented, but she doesn’t even fly under the radar. My clients can’t understand where she came from and why she’s there and to be honest, I’m embarrassed. This is an insane situation I’ve got myself into!


On a better note, I’ve got a girl that just passed her state boards, is very promising, and will apprentice under me until she’s ready to handle her own clientele. She has the passion for nails I did when I first started and she does makeup like I do! West and talked for a very long time about everything and I never once wanted her to leave, which says a lot about our chemistry and gives me great hope about her working with me. Dealing with the first girl has given me a different approach in the beginning. More tact? Nah, but I can better voice my expectations on the front end. So we’ll see what comes of it seeing as though she starts on the 22nd.


On the 5th of October, I held a charity event for Domestic Violence Awareness month. Unfortunately, my manicurist didn’t help me, so it was just me. I opened it up from 9a.m.-9p.m., walk-ins only. I hit the ground running that morning when the first person arrived at 9:20 and it was nonstop until 7pm!!! I served drinks and had an Italian-themed food spread with handmade pesto, bruschetta, Italian pinwheels, and homegrown basil, mozzarella, and tomato skewers. There was plenty of wine and peach bellinis served by my wonderful client Stacy who helped way more than anybody knew. Everyone was so great for showing up like they did and Graffiti Nail Bar raised $616 to donate to Her Faith Ministries which helps with shelter, counseling, and crisis management for women who are in difficult and dangerous relationships. I was affected by domestic violence earlier in life; I’ve never been through it personally, but someone very close to me was. So it was the least I could do for someone who’s trying to get out of it. If nothing good ever happens to me or for me, that day was one of the happiest days of my life and I’ll remember it always.


So, the ups and downs of business are ever present and I’ll take them any day just to live the life I live inside of Graffiti Nail Bar. Grand opening is next. Stay tuned... 


— Lauren, Graffiti Nail Bar, Memphis, Tenn.


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