I was a salon consultant for six years. In that time, I worked with hundreds of different types of salons, and their owners and stylists. One of the reasons I decided to open my own place is because I wanted to put something out there that I hadn't seen. A different kind of place.
My job as a consultant was to teach, train, sell. I also had plenty of time to observe. I spent time in (what seems like) millions of places where the customer service was, uhm, slightly less than atrocious. Clients coming in and stylists walking up to see if it was their customer. When it wasn't, just turning around and walking back. Saying nothing. No smile. No hang on, someone will be with you in a minute. Nada. Or stylists talking only to each other, as their clients sat listening in the chair.
The music was so loud in some places that everyone was yelling at each other in order to have a conversation. I would leave with the biggest headache after only being there minutes. I can only imagine sitting there for hours.
I saw unswept floors, or piles of hair building until the end of the day. Brushes and combs used on clients that I saw used on the previous client with no cleaning in between. Tools with hair stuck all over them not being cleaned. Animals hanging out in the salon. Not service animals. Just pet animals. Pedicure tubs, and pedi mani implements just rinsed in water. No sanitizer in sight. (If this happens to you, RUN!)
And, the quality of work sometimes made me more squeamish than the poor sanitization. I worked with many stylists who had not received education since they were licensed. People who never even so much as read a trade journal. Still used the only haircolor line and knowledge they ever learned, in school. (This may not mean much to you, but if you only knew the truth about how little stylists know about color when they graduate, you would be frightened too.)
I decided I wanted to open my own place. A place where I knew everything was clean, and safe, and sanitized. A place with superior customer service, where clients feel like they can come and really relax. Take a break from the day, and not leave with a headache. Our music is more coffee shop. (Think Starbucks, or Barnes & Noble.) And we play it in the background, not in your face. If clients feel like talking, that's great. If they don't, that's fine too. We avoid forced small talk whenever possible. And when we are talking, you can bet that we're not telling you all of our personal problems, and we're not starting up inappropriate conversations that will make your face turn red.
We have fun, but we want people to leave feeling refreshed. And we want them to leave more knowledgeable about their hair, or skin, or feet than when they came in. If they have questions, we want to take the time to answer them.
If any of those things are important to you too, you should check us out. If not, stay where you are. Oh, and by the way, if you're worried about us being current in what's happening with hair, skin, and makeup, we've got it covered there too. We attend and conduct classes in our salon at least a couple times a month. Down time at our place is either training time, or cleaning time.
Now that I think about it, I guess we are quite an anomaly.