In 1987 when I suddenly found myself the owner of a Nail Salon, I truly did not know what I was getting myself into. My background is Business. Sitting behind the chair is not really what I anticipated when I leaped into this Business.
Many things went wrong however, and that’s exactly where I ended up…behind the chair.
I can’t say I didn’t enjoy it. I did. I met some wonderful people, earned a decent living and mastered an art I didn’t know I was capable of doing.
When my Distributors rep approached me 2 years into my Salon ownership, about a position as an Educator….I had no idea what this mean’t or what to expect. I only knew it sounded exciting. I could choose how much or how little I wanted to put into it. I could travel. I could work the trade shows all over the Country. I could teach. I’m in!
The position was with a Company called Elegant Glass. They were known for their fiberglass nail product. It was this Company which opened my eyes to the endless opportunities our Beauty Industry has to offer. It was this Company that led me to forming friendships which I still have today….namely the owners of Life of Riley Salon Supply, my landlords - my roommates. It was also this Company that not only fed my passion for Education but made me realize my days of playing teacher as a little girl, could actually become of a reality.
I ran their Education with Sheryl, the owners wife for 14 years. I travelled the Country sponging off their Sales Directory Clyde and I sat with them on more occasions than I can remember, dreaming up the next biggest “thing” in nails. Many of which we scoffed at and are now common place in our Salons. One in particular I will always remember, is an idea they had about mixing powder with a resin. We laughed at the idea of calling it C.R.A.P - clear, resin, acrylic powder.
With products such as CRACK being sold in our salons today, maybe we were actually on to an idea.
The biggest thing I think I learned however, is helping people realize they need you. Not because they actually need your product, but they need what your product has to offer. They need the benefits of your product. They need the benefits of your Education.
In our presentation, we always began with asking our audience “what are you looking for”. If you could design the perfect product, name the features and the benefits. In the end, what the audience was asking for, we knew we could deliver.
I think of this often when I want to share the brands I carry with you. What is it YOU want? Is it the tangibles? Or is really the intangibles, the things you can’t really put a price on like Customer service?
So I put myself back behind the chair and I imagine I’m specializing in Foot Care. I imagine I’m in this world of many many choices and I imagine I found this magic Genie lamp where I rub the lamp and I can have anything I want.
It took some thinking, after all…you do have to be careful what you wish for. My list is a bit more complex than I thought it would be. It really gets into the guts of providing Professional, quality foot care
- Integrity -
With the age of SM, it’s more of a reality to me now, how important these three things are. There are so many products available to us and everyone has their favorites. Everyone always says what they use is the BEST ever. Not sure how anyone can say that unless they have literally tried every product on the market. Virtually impossible.
What I wish I could see more Technicians bragging about the IQS of the products they use. What I wish I could see is more Mfgs with IQS!
INTEGRITY- Truthfully, this word is the most important to me personally. In my opinion, without integrity....you have nothing!
Integrity: the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles
What about integrity in the brands you choose;
In products, integrity is the source of sustainable competitive advantage. Products with integrity perform superbly, provide good value, and satisfy customers' expectations in every respect, including such intangibles as their look and feel.
Satisfy customers' expectations in every aspect!
YOU are my customer. It is important to me that the products I represent meet your expectations not just today, but tomorrow and the day after and the day after.
However, it's also important to me that you are able to meet the expectations of your clients. Even expectations they don't even realize they want.
QUALITY-Continuous is of importance to me.
Quality: the standard of something as measured against other things of a similar kind; the degree of excellence of something.
"Quality is the degree of excellence at an acceptable price and the control of variability at an acceptable cost.""Quality means best for certain customer conditions. These conditions are (a) the actual use and(b) the selling price of the product.
When choosing quality products, you are agreeing to choose products which will work for your clients. What are they needs, at what price range.
YOU are the only one who can answer these questions. I can provide Educational material to assist you in your research, but ultimately, it is your decision.
SAFETY-the condition of being protected from or unlikely to cause danger, risk, or injury
When choosing products you want to use on your clients, safety is so important in our times today. We, as Technicians are subjected to so much more than we used to be. We have more clients with immune compromised healthy concerns than ever before. Diabetes, neurothapy, fibromyalgia just to name a few.
It's important we know the ingredients and what they mean to us. It's important to know the contra-indications...if any. And, what if one of our clients has a reaction...will you know what to do?
I beg you, caution your choices with what you see on SM. Do your own research. Know what your own needs are, the needs of your clients.
Educate - Educate - Educate
My Dad always said, as he was running is own Business. I could be a millionaire. I could have my own jet, afford to send you kids to the most expensive schools. If I did, I wouldn't be a man of integrity, and integrity means more to me than being a millionaire.
Instead, we ate left overs, we wore hand me downs and we traveled to friends for our vacations in a Chevy Van....all 9 of us and sometimes our dog.
Today, my Dad still talks about the "what if"s, on occasion. I look at it from a different perspective. I thank him for being the man he was....I'm just like him. I thank him for teaching the values that are missing in our society today.
Because of what he taught me, I am able to bring you with great confidence, products with IQS!
IQS the 3 most important values in our pedicure chairs today.