Jamie Brooks, co-owner of Brooks & Brooks, London, reveals his countdown to surviving the busy festive season
1 Plan your team attendance
Knowing what day you are open and who will be working over the festive month of December should be decided now. We open the diary in August and the team collectively discuss which days they think we should be open and when we will be closed. We go with the majority vote, so this year we are working seven days a week for the two weeks prior to Christmas, which means we finish on the 22nd and reopen on the 27th. All the team will be in the salon throughout December and anyone wanting to take holiday needs to get it approved by the whole team.
2 Boost your retail
You should already know what special retail sets you will be offering, so make sure you have something for all your clients. From gift sets to 3-to-2 offers, make sure they are prominently displayed and stylists talk about what they can treat themselves to.
3 Keep decorations classy!
Christmas decorations get the atmosphere of the salon ready for the busy season – with mulled wine and bucks fizz – we find keeping the salon’s Christmas decorations to the reception area and the windows allows a busy salon to be busy but giving it the festive feel. Keep the decorations in keeping with your clientele.
4 Create the right atmosphere
December can be a stressful and tiring month for everyone, so you need to make the salon a place where the team are happy to come to work! Clients may run late, or want something extra and we need to be able to accommodate as much as we can, so brief the assistants ensure the stylists have everything they need, are on hand to help, with everyone working as a team.
5 Plan head
Stylists will be working long hours, missing breaks and lunch and sometimes working with stressed clients, so your support team need to be on top of their game. Assistants through to front of house team, they all need to be make sure the salon is clean, tidy, everything is in place and clients are fully aware of their appointment times.
6 Client journey
With the salon busy and full of people, it’s important clients feel pampered when they come in. So make sure there are plenty of seats available, refreshments are served and they are well looked after.
7 Say thank you
Mulled wine, Christmas biscuits and Christmas candles are the perfect thank you gift for your loyal clients. It’s a small gesture but they’ll appreciate it.
8 A happy team
It’s important you do things as a team during this busy period so they also feel appreciated. Go for a drink or pizza after work, organise Secret Santa and personal presents and don’t forget to say thank you for all their hard work. Those two words can change their mood and give them a boost when it’s busy.