Five Salon Ideas for Success

Lisa Starr
Salon ideas

(Credit: Monkey Business Images /

The Roman god Janus is often depicted with two faces, looking both backwards and forwards.  

He also symbolizes “beginnings,” which is why January is named for him.  You’ve been reading plenty of advice on New Year’s resolutions, so rather than add specific items to your list of things to change, we decided to outline 5 salon ideas to guide you to continued success, no matter what month it is. 

Idea 1: Invest in Your Team

To have a successful salon, your stylists, colorists, nail technicians, therapists, and support staff are the key to your salon’s success.  Make sure to plan your training and education budget for 2014 so that they have the skills and tools needed to operate at their best every single day.  An education budget of 5% of revenue is a good place to start; then break it down between technical and customer service-oriented trainings.  Make sure that everyone has an opportunity to participate in at least one improvement initiative each year.

Idea 2: Focus on the Client Experience

The entire salon experience needs to be top-notch; not just the styling, but the booking, check-in and -out, lounge or waiting area, and retail offerings.  Enhance clients’ time with you by providing free Wi-Fi, a good selection of refreshments, a clean, comfortable environment, and magazines that are current!  Remember, it costs a lot less to keep active clients happy then it does to acquire new ones. 

Idea 3: Develop Your Leadership Skills 

Are you the leader you’ve always wanted to be?  Does your presence inspire your staff to reach higher, or do they find you intimidating or “difficult?”  Be honest in your self-assessment, and plan to invest some time in fine-tuning your role as team leader.  Inspirational ideas and strategies are always just a click away or pick up a book such as hospitality guru Danny Meyer’s “Setting the Table” or the classic “Who Moved My Cheese?” by Spencer Johnson.  Remember, leading a successful salon is a work in progress—you’re never done.

Idea 4: Let the Past Inspire the Future

With your financial adviser and management team, set aside a half-day in late January for a thorough review of last year’s business.  What worked?  What didn’t?  What lessons can be learned?  Get everyone focused on the big picture before drilling down to departmental and personal budgets and goals.  When you consider changes, make sure they will be in areas that are most impactful to experience or profits.

Idea 5: Strive for Balance

Whether you are a baby boomer with or a Gen X kid, life today is about balance in all areas.  Ensure you are setting a good example for your staff, and that your policies support excellence in work performance while also recognizing that people are individuals with widely varying needs and wants.  Both clients and staff today are all about community, make sure you are participating in and giving back to yours.

About the Author

Lisa Starr

Lisa Starr brings over 30 years of industry-specific experience as a consultant, educator and writer to Booker through GOtalk. Lisa also works for Wynne Business, a leading spa consulting and education company. Among other things, Lisa’s expertise lies in business operations and finances, sales and marketing, inventory management, human resource development, and business process improvement. She is a well-known speaker within the trade show circuit and is a frequent contributor to industry

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