If change was easy, I would wake up an hour earlier every morning and go to the gym. I want to be that person, but alas, like so many others, I am a creature of habit. In fact, a study at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology confirmed that 90 percent of what most people do in any day follows routines so complete that their behavior can be predicted with just a few mathematical equations. The problem is—what if you are a creature of BAD habits?
For hairstylists, bad habits can sabotage your business and your career. One of the worst offenders is a poor consultation. The consultation is your opportunity to create positive change and give your clients a “wow” experience. This is why you should never ask, “Do you want the usual?” or “Same as last time?”
According to a recent poll, 64% of women are bored with their hair. Change is inevitable—if you’re not offering change to your clients, they will find someone who will. Becoming a “creature of change” begins with a great consultation. Here are five simple tips to a great consultation and putting an end to bad habits:
1. ASK open-ended questions
It is best to ask, “What do you love or hate about your hair?” and “Is there certain style you’re interested in”? Gain an understanding of their lifestyle, and a realistic expectation of how much time they’re willing to put towards styling. Open-ended questions give your client the opportunity to talk about themselves and express their challenges.
2. LISTEN and OBSERVE
Does she sound excited about a specific style, or disheartened from a previous bad experience? What does her body language tell you? Does a particular recommendation cause her to look panicked? Bonus points: mirror her energy. If she is calm, stay calm as well.
3. Use your WORDS and your PICTURES
Hairdressers speak their own language. Do not assume that your client understands your special vernacular. Use pictures and imagery to support your ideas or to clarify theirs. Keep up on current styles, tab your favorite magazine images, or make a Pinterest board to use as a reference tool.
4. EXPLAIN your hair plan
Give your client a realistic expectation on the lifespan of their new style. Explain how they will maintain their new look and maximize their investment in your service. This prepares your client to re-book and purchase products.
5. REVIEW what has been decided
Recap by showing where the agreed lengths of hair will be. Use your imagery to show your color goals. Be transparent on pricing and maintenance.
Most clients are not dissatisfied because of poor skills, but from a disconnect between what they expected and what they received. A professional consultation will align your service with your client’s intentions. Become a creature of change and grow your business and client loyalty with these five simple steps.