During the 33 years I have been working behind the chair, I have seen many many changes, some negative and some positive. Probably one of the biggest being, the advent of the 24 hour culture.
I well remember the days when the only way a client was able to contact you, was by telephoning the salon during working hours. Which in its own way was quite a positive thing, as you were then able to keep your home and work lives completely separate. You could easily keep a professional image as the hairdresser and understand the boundaries of the client relationship. I suppose a negative element of those days, would be that it was harder to contact clients, if you needed to re-schedule or alter their appointments in some way.
As I reflect and look back to those days, I think clients themselves, were in more of a routine and you had many more weekly clients. My clients always thought to tell me in advance if they needed to cancel or rearrange. These days in my world of hairdressing, you have so many more clients, but potentially I see them less regularly, as they often only book when they need colour appointments.
I strongly feel that now a days being a hairdresser, you really have to be very disciplined and strong minded to not falling into the trap of running a 24 hour booking system. I feel that as the digital world is taking over, clients can contact you 24 hours a day by the many tools that are open to them SMS text, Messenger, Facebook ,email, Twitter, WhatsApp and Instagram (to name but a few)
I sometimes think that people should really stop and consider that hairdressers who work for themselves, also have a home life.
Keep a healthy home and work life balance, can be a difficult challenge. For myself and my husband Richard, when you work with your husband. Luckily we learnt many years ago that we never discuss clients or appointments at home. We never bring the appointment book home. We try very hard to reply to clients during our working hours. This way we can remain extremely professional, because in reality our clients are our customers and not friends. This in turn then creates happy, balanced, home and work life for Richard and myself.
We are very fortunate that between us, we have a lot of very loyal clients, who respect that we care about them as clients and that we always do our best in booking their appointments. Most of our clients respect we are not in the salon 24 hours a day. They don’t cancel appointments at the last-minute, unless they are not well. Most of our clients show us huge respect and appreciation for our dedication to them as our loyal clients.
So if you a reading this and you are a hairdresser. You should know that you do an amazing job, but you are not a hairdresser 24 hours a day. Give yourself a cut-off time, meaning that you will not respond to clients after such a time. Always allow some time to communicate with family and friends, spare sometime for them. This then creates a good work and home life balance.
Keeping you happy, healthy whilst working behind the chair.
If you are reading this from a client’s perspective, then please give a thought to your hairdresser when making, cancelling or re-scheduling appointments. Don’t forget, your hairdresser is human and will have many other clients.They are not robots, they have their own family and friends. I strongly believe good hairdressers are very hard to find. So please show your hairdresser the respect and appreciation they deserve.
Remember your hair is the crown you never take off Sit and think how would you feel if you no longer had your amazing hairdresser in your life. I believe a good hairdresser is very very hard to replace so really treasure them and the relationship you have with yours.
Sending huge appreciation out into the universe to all the talented hairdressers in the world, you truly do an amazing job, give yourself the balance of life you deserve.
Love and light
Mel Johnson xx