cialize with clients outside of the salon on occasion. I will always invite clients to social gatherings such as brunches and art gallery openings, but I always keep it on a professional level. Sometimes it’s nice to get all dolled up and socialize with your favorite guests in a different environment and treat them to a few cocktails and fine dining at a new restaurant. I find that it brings loyalty to a new level. I know my guests appreciate being treated to a nice dinner once in a while — after all, they pay my bills all year so I am happy to pick up the tab from time to time!
Nellie Neal, Get Nailed by Nellie, Minnetonka, Minn.
I will be in my third year of business come June. I have yet to hang out with any of my clients outside of the shop. If you’d asked me when I first started, my answer would have been no, absolutely not. But I see these women — some who have been with me right from the beginning — sometimes twice a month. You learn about their daily lives and can’t help but think of them throughout the weeks. I would totally reconsider because it’s become more personal, not just business.
Beth Albrecht, Nails by Beth, Kitchener, Ontario, Canada
Do I socialize with clients outside of the salon? The short answer is yes — with one. I do not try and make this a regular habit because I do believe there should be a professional boundary between myself and my clients. However, I do have a client I have become closer with and see outside of the salon. Her name is Nichole and we met when she moved into town and was looking for a new salon. Within a couple of visits we discovered we attend the same church (different services) and connected even more through that. She has been a blessing in my life, and I am so glad we met. As for my other clients, I try not to cross that professional line and keep them as just clients.
Anne Van Spronsen, McIntyre’s Salon and Day Spa , Portage, Mich.
I had a tough life for a while, and when I came to my new salon, I had a few women who helped me through everything. I am Facebook friends with nearly all of them. I am moving away shortly, leaving my current salon. I hope to keep in touch with them. I have a few important life events happening shortly after I leave, and they want to stay in touch and see my life continue to get better.
Hope Szymanski, Nailtique, Whitewater, Wis.
What have you learned by visiting nail salons other than your own? [Answers will be printed in the September 2015 issue.] Share your opinion on the topic by e-mailing your response by June 15 to Tracy.Rubert@bobit.com. Please include your name, salon, city and state, and a high-resolution headshot with your response.