You can have the very best hairstylists in the world, but that only goes so far. After all, no one will know how great they are if they don't have good customer service skills because clients will leave before they ever experience the great cut they could have received. Make sure all of your stylists, nail techs, massage therapists, and other employees know the basics of good customer service in addition to being experts in their profession.

Make it clear who is responsible for greeting clients at all times.</strong> If you have a receptionist, of course it is her job, but have a backup. If she's on break or helping out elsewhere, someone should know to say hello to any client who walks in during the time the desk is unmanned. If you don't have a receptionist, be sure that your stylists know that they need to do this. There's little worse than walking into a business, especially if you've never been there before, and finding it empty with no one to help you.

Similarly, if there will be a wait for any reason, it's on the stylist's shoulders to let the client or receptionist know, and to provide an estimate of time and an apology. Often, the client who might become irate at being made to wait will be content to look at a magazine for a length of time if she is just informed of the delay and her inconvenience acknowledged. People are just looking for basic courtesy, so make sure your stylists prioritize this.

Remind your stylists to pay attention to their conversations and to who is in the room. The salon has traditionally been viewed as the place to go for gossip, and this is okay to a point, especially with an established client who has a rapport with many of your staff. But when your employees have new clients, remind them to keep the chatter to a minimum and focus on the person in their styling chairs. They should make conversation with the client, ask engaging questions, or back off if the person does not appear to want to talk. It can feel disrespectful to a client if stylists are talking back and forth with each other and ignoring the person whose hair they are cutting.

Stylists should be prepared and thorough. When a stylist has an appointment booked at 8am, she should not arrive at 7:55. Her salon equipment should be clean and ready for the client. If she does run late, she needs to remember that it isn't the client's fault and that she still needs to spend the allotted time on each client to get the job done right. She needs to be capable of scheduling properly so that she has the appropriate amount of time available to spend on each client's needs and isn't rushing from one to the next. The client should feel that all of the stylist's attention is focused on her during the appointment.

Get your stylists following these suggestions, and you'll have happier customers and more efficient employees!