AHP Indie Stylist

Volume 1, Issue 1

Issue link: http://www.ahpindiestylist.com/i/1250436

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Page 14 of 72

12 indie stylist Volume 1 Issue 1 iving through a global pandemic is nothing any of us were prepared for or could have foreseen on the horizon. After all, just a few months ago, our salons were filled with busy holiday shoppers and partygoers. Ninety days later, our doors are shut for an unknown amount of time. Initially, when COVID-19 broke, I was in disbelief. However, that disbelief quickly turned to a feeling of intense responsibility, as I understood that the nearly 10,000 stylists operating their businesses in Phenix Salon Suites would be adversely affected. From that time forward, I went into "work mode" with a priority to develop an action plan for my company. The first thing I focused on was building a strong line of communication with the hairstylists and other lifestyle professionals who run their businesses in one of our suites. I also heavily engaged my team in the process of gathering information and dispersing it as we received changes and updates to the guidelines regarding the industry. Our monthly newsletter shifted focus to the pandemic, and we developed an entire portion of our website committed to providing up-to- date information, multiple resources, and a state list of cosmetology boards. In addition, I started sending weekly video messages of encouragement to our professionals. I urged them to reach out to their clients with virtual hugs to ensure the lines of communication were kept open. I also recommended FaceTime consultations with clients, so the professionals could see the state of their clients' hair and suggest tips for care. Currently, we are sending daily eblasts on education, safety guidelines, and other resources as they develop. The Big Comeback The owner of Phenix Salon Suites shares her strategies for helping stylists move forward by Gina Rivera Offering free education classes was also key to me, as I wanted to ensure that we gave back by supporting stylists through this difficult time. In line with this thought, I launched the Business of One website and campaign. To provide further support, we are about to release two new ad campaigns with the intent of highlighting the suite environment as a safe space. The environment is extremely conducive to social distancing, as all services are provided one-on-one in closed rooms, unlike a large multi-chair salon. Suites do not have large common waiting areas, shared equipment, or shared washbowls. It is my belief that educating the consumer on the suite model will contribute to putting our professionals' clients at ease when they visit our locations. I also immediately began to work with my artistic team to develop a strong education program that could be provided remotely. I knew that keeping our professionals' attention on the industry would be important not only to support building their skill sets, but also to assist with maintaining their positive mindset and mental health. On March 23, we kicked off our first online education class hosted on Facebook Live. It was a huge success, and we are now hosting 2–3 classes per week. In addition, we took education to the next level by hosting guest educators from other companies such as Hattori Hanzo and Salon Centric. I am proud to say the program is resonating, and we typically have between 100–500 stylists viewing each event. Offering free education classes was also key to me, as I wanted to ensure that we gave back by supporting stylists through

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