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Lost confidence, need to start over

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Teenz

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Hi ladies,
I’m currently studying level 3 beauty and am also qualified in classic lashes and micro/nano hair extensions. I’m an older student at 43
I set up a room in my home and was doing ok with the lashes and cutting times down until I had a really horrible experience with a clients parent (client was 18 and happy with what I did but mum slated need all over fb and on my personal page, apparently she’s got form for this).
This woman has completely knocked my confidence and I’ve not worked since and have put my efforts into training.
I really need to get back out there and start offering treatments but again, have zero confidence in myself now.
I have a fully functioning room that is gathering dust and becoming a dumping ground.
I have no one around me to practice on !! And my area is flooded with “cheap” lash techs etc.
how do I gain confidence again ?
also how easy is it to get a job in a salon straight out of college with little experience ?
Thankyou for your help
 

6erardmer

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Hello, I just came across your post please don't give up if you know you've done a good job up until now don't waste your skills what you love doing because of a bad experience. Unfortunately there's always one out there who spoils it for us and really knocks our confidence down make us doubtful of our skills and weary. I can tell you I'm 44 I have been a therapist for 10 years now always working in salons from day one I've always considered my forte being in massage and precision work I received the most negative massage review before lockdown from a lady who was complaining on behalf of her sisiter she blatantly lied about several things and I was so upset it made me question everything. It lasted 2 days and I thought no I know I do a very good job experienced no complaints in 10 years why should I doubt myself because of that one horrible liar.?
Sorry to go on but at the end charge your worth the advantage at home you can be choosy about your client and I couldn't stress enough with my clients there's nothing we can't fix if they're unhappy.
I hope you find the courage to start again you can do it!!!
Sabrina xx
 

TheDuchess

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As time has passed, this is not so much about damage limitation (ring up all your customers that are happy and get them to post reviews so that a negative review is buried) and less about your emotional response to unfair criticism and much more about how to get yourself “back on the horse” so to speak.

I suggest you treat this as a business exercise and take the time to understand what went wrong and how to ensure that it doesn’t happen again. I don’t get complaints very often so when I do, it can go one of two ways: I can ignore it as most of my clients are happy, or I can analyse it (swallowing my annoyance and indignation) and try and understand what SYSTEM changes would have avoided the complaint.

I treat complaints as important feedback. If I had a consultant come and analyse my business to tell me how to improve, I’d expect them to mystery shop me and Id expect to pay for her report. So a customer complaint is potentially a very inexpensive way to get that valuable feedback and learn how to improve. Of course the expensive complaints are the ones that damage your reputation and cost you business. It’s important not to have too many of those.

The first thing is to gain some perspective. You do have to learn to manage knock backs because that’s part of the self employment deal.

The next thing is to understand who your customer is. In the case of young women, the customer is often the Mum, so you need to check in with Mum including customer aftercare etc. It’s good to know that people often complain and feel indignant on behalf of people that they care about - especially if they’ve organised the appointment. Sometimes the organiser is also your “customer”. Make sure that you identify all of the customers having a treatment and acknowledge them and ensure they are happy and informed.

What helps in these tricky situations is to have a system about how you deal with customers each and every time and not deviate from your system. For instance you may have a rule that customers should not arrive for their appointment wearing waterproof mascara, and you may also have a rule that you always take a before and after photo, and that you give out an aftercare card, EVERY SINGLE TIME. Customer complaints help you identify where you can make a system change.

You can call your system, your company policy, and you can put your company policy up on your Facebook, website etc. And you can quote it.

“It is our policy to take before and after photos and show them to our customer to make sure they are happy with their treatment”. Is more powerful than “she looked in the mirror and seemed happy before she left”

You can also post a photo in a review. (There are a few issues about permission here which I won’t go into, but in general, if someone slated me unfairly across social media, I’d put a photo up to rebut them as my first response).

if you identify a couple of changes to put in place you will feel more empowered.

As for the rest, don’t worry about it too much. I’ve been slated on social media for a french manicure - most unfairly. I actually got more bookings with people looking at me earnestly saying that they had heard my french manicure was very good (!) and I ended up on the experience even though it was terribly upsetting at the time. Years later, one of my clients said that she’d read a very negative review and checked the reviewer out and found that she’d been very rude about every place she’d reviewed, so had discounted the review. Another person said that if you only have positive reviews people think they’re fake so if you have a negative review it’s reassuring that anyone can comment. Positive reviews are the ones that matter because people are always optimistic and hopeful.

And here’s a tip. Only work with people you like. Life is too short to suck up other people’s negativity. If you know that you can just say “I’m so sorry i tried my best to give you the experience you wanted” and never book them again, it’s quite freeing. And to be honest, you don’t want any of their yucky mates either, so how lucky are you that you’ll never see any of them again!

Your customers are your fans. They’re not passengers waiting for a bus, having to get onboard no matter what. They have chosen you. Not everyone is going to love you, so don’t worry about them. Just let them go find a therapist/salon that’s suits them better and concentrate on understanding the clients that do love you and focus your marketing on getting more clients like your best fans.
 

Haircutz

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Please don’t let one negative person upset your confidence.

The above posts by @6erardmer and @TheDuchess provide excellent advice as always.

Its a fact of life that there are a tiny minority of people will complain and whinge about nothing much because that’s who they are. You cannot change them or their negativity but accept that they believed had an issue (whether real or imaginary) and then forget about it and move on.
You need to understand that in those instances, it’s not really about you at all, but they’re unhappy with themselves and they need to focus that unhappy energy towards someone else.
It just happened to be you this time.
You can guarantee that it will be someone else who will bear the brunt of their unhappiness next week.
 

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