It’s time to get real. I am a regular client at the hair salon. I mean, I GO to the salon – at least every 3-4 weeks – just for my hair.
(This is NOT a rant against stylists – I love you. )
I have great, thick hair. I also fight
gray white hair, and have since I was in my 20’s. My mom has beautiful, thick hair, and at 87 has less gray than I. My dad on the other hand was totally white-haired by the time he was 35.
I don’t mind the fact that I have white hair. It’s just that I’m not ready to go all in. So, since my native color is some sort of goldish-reddish-brownish color, it takes a lot to keep it covered.
I’ve had several different stylists. We’ve moved – they’ve moved, whatever, different ones. When I meet a new stylist, I’m always afraid. I know what I want, but I can’t seem to communicate it. I take pictures, it doesn’t help. And, hair salons aren’t cheap either. So, not only do I have to worry what the outcome will be, I have to wonder what the price tag will be, too. So if you hate your hair, pay $300 for it, AND it takes 4 or 5 hours, it makes you (ok, me) kind of cranky.
So, when I walk into a salon, I realize I carry a lot of baggage with me. I REALLY try to not be a crazy customer. I understand that they don’t know me, I don’t know them. But, this is the thing, even when I’ve gone to the same stylist over and over, I wonder most of the same basic things:
Will I need to take out a loan when I’m finished?
Will they get enough of the weight out of my hair?
Will I have white hair within a week of my experience?
Will I feel like the real me?
Will they do what I want or what they think I need?
How long will it take to grow back?
Why do they color my hair so dark and then tell me they can’t lighten it with color when I told them I didn’t want dark hair?
Will they understand what I mean by “piecey”, “edgey”, “up-to-date”, and “I don’t want to look like I’m an old lady” and “I don’t want to look like I’m trying too hard to be young”?
Will the stylist care if I’m not happy?
But here’s the thing. I have had ONE STYLIST who helped me not be afraid to sit in her chair. I mean, I still wondered how it would all turn out, but she did this ONE THING that kept me coming back to her again and again.
It was the WAY SHE WASHED MY HAIR! I mean, WOW!
Wende would make sure the water temperature was just right. She would adjust the chair so that I was in the perfect, relaxed position. Then, she would apply that aromatic, luscious peppermint soap to my hair. She would stop talking, slow waaaay down, and massage away every worry and care I had. Eyes closed, I was confident that all my concerns about the appointment would wash down the bowl with the suds.
Ahhh. I feel better just thinking about it.
Now, on to the meaning of all of this.
How do you wash away your clients’ fears? Do you have a system in place to make your clients feel good about doing business with you, even when they aren’t sure what the outcome could be? Even if they’ve never met YOU, they carry in the baggage they’ve accumulated over the years.
A fearful client will not come back to you. If they have experienced anything to make them stop and wonder if you are the right (insert whatever you are and whatever you do here), and you haven’t done anything to make them feel comfortable with the process, they will not come back.
Have you ever had a client just disappear for no known reason? Probably afraid.
Have you ever had a customer excited to schedule an appointment or meeting with you and then not show up? Afraid.
Did you ever have someone call you at the last minute with a lame excuse for not getting together, or closing the sale? Afraid.
When you have them in your stylist chair, so to speak, what are you doing, saying or providing, to help them feel comfortable with you?
If you experience cancellations, missed meetings, and clients disappearing into the witness protection program, you might want to amp up your HAIR WASHING techniques.
Here are a few questions to ask yourself:
1) Do I really listen to my client when I first meet them? Do I know what THEY want out of the association?
2) Have I made a list of the things I see as their concerns or objections? Have I restated them to make sure I’ve understood?
3) How is their body language? Are they open to you or have they turned themselves away from the conversation?
4) How is your body language? Are you dominant, or engaging?
5) If you are on the phone with them, are you distracted by other things around you?
6) The Most Important: Are You Fully Present?
So, my question to you today is this: do you need to brush up on your hair washing techniques?
I’d love to hear your thoughts back. Pop me a message in the comments, okay? And please, share this with a friend or two. You probably know someone who is lousy at washing hair!
Live Inspired! Live At Your Best!