Does anyone else feel a bit like it’s Groundhog Day during a lockdown period? Every day you’re waking up, watching the news, checking in with your team, obsessively refreshing the same social feeds and making a LOT of cups of tea?
Periods of unexpected downtime can sometimes start to feel like the same day, over and over, as you struggle to create a new routine.
It can be especially hard when there’s no specific end date, and with the information we receive sometimes feeling like it’s changing overnight, it’s important to start forming some habits to counteract these uncertain feelings.
As a business owner and manager, being in lockdown is a great time to re-energise your staff and set some little projects to keep morale up.
We’ve collated some of our best ideas – and we’ve even got some we can help you with!
1. Spring clean your space
It might not officially be spring, but hopefully by the time it does roll around, we’ll all be so flat out with clients that we’ll be thanking our lucky stars we had the foresight to do a deep clean of the shop now!
If you’re allowed to travel to your salon, start with a clean-out, then do a deep clean. Channel your inner Marie Kondo and if it doesn’t bring you (business) joy, it’s got to go.
Some tips from the experts:
- Get smart with storage – do you keep some products or tools inside cupboards and some within easy reach? Put away everything you can, within reason. That way, clients will notice the things you want them to see – like your retail products.
- Become the customer. What do you want your customers to see when they get to the front desk? What about when they’re sitting in the chair?
- Recycle old magazines – no one STILL wants to read about the Kanye / Taylor Swift feud, so bin those old issues responsibly and hit refresh on your reading material! Plus, it’s a good idea to get rid of anything that could be home to COVID-19 germs. Seeya germ-monsters!
Got some retail stock sitting on a shelf collecting dust? We’ve got just the thing….
2. Stocktake retail products
What better time to do a stocktake than when you’re closed?! Don’t wait for the end of the financial year, use the quiet time now to get a team member to check your stock lists against what’s recorded in Shortcuts.
Have you got an online store? You could have a team member act as a virtual sales consultant, advising clients on product recommendations and treatment routines.
If you don’t have an online shop, don’t worry! We’ve got a simple way to help you get set up with a Shopify store – using your up-to-date stock information from Shortcuts. Check it out and get selling today.
3. Online training
Now is the perfect time to get your team up to speed on all-things-Shortcuts!
Our educators have been working SO hard to get our brilliant Online Classrooms ready for you all, and in light of the current situation, we’ve decided to make it COMPLETELY FREE!
That’s right – you and your team can access our extensive Online Classrooms program at zero cost, for the entire duration of the COVID-19 crisis.
“We are frequently told by owners that neither they nor their team have time for training, finding it difficult to book them in. While staff are furloughed and still in employment it is a great time to create virtual team meetings and training sessions. Online training keeps everyone connected during this time while building their knowledge and skills,” said our Shortcuts Educator, Jonny.
Think small, virtual classes with your favourite Shortcuts educators, UNLIMITED and online. We’ve even got pre-recorded versions that you can watch, if you can’t make a scheduled classroom time.
Online Classrooms are limited to a smaller number of attendees than webinars, and they’re designed to be interactive. You’ll be able to ask questions and interact, just as you would in a normal training session.
There’s no limit to the number of sessions you can sign up to, so start booking in your classes today. We’ll even be adding in some COVID-19-specific topics over the coming weeks, so be sure to keep checking back!
4. Social media strategy
Struggling to think of things to post on Instagram now that you don’t have any gorgeous client pics? Then it’s time to get strategic.
Our friends at Social Sorted recently did a fab masterclass all about social media strategy in the time of COVID. You can watch it here and get cracking on a strategy to smash your socials while you’re closed. Social media is a great to get your team involved with too – clients who are missing their regular catchups with your stylists and therapists will love seeing a friendly face on their feeds!
5. Connect with the industry
Speaking of social media, have you checked in with your industry peers? There are some great Facebook groups that already exist, and some that have been recently set up to connect, inspire and support salon owners during Coronavirus.
Some of our favourites:
Aftermath Hair Ed – started by the legendary Kobi Bokshish and Adam Ciaccia, the group has amassed an astounding 7,000+ members worldwide and is growing daily. Their mission – “In good times & bad the Global Hairdressing community is here to support one and other; united together through friendship, positivity and kindness we can overcome any crisis.”
AHC – Connect, Support and Share – this is a great group for AHC members to connect with other members, share experiences and stay up to date with industry news.
Shorties Users AU/NZ – shameless plug, but how could we not? We’d be lying if we said we didn’t love our local Shorties Users. You guys are a great bunch! We created the Facebook group as a place for you to connect with us, ask advice, seek inspiration from peers, and hear the latest updates from Shortcuts, all in one place.
6. Stay in touch with clients
If your team aren’t seeing clients face to face, there’s still opportunities to connect. And it’s more important than ever to make sure you’re the first appointment they think to make when the government restrictions are lifted. Think of how many monobrows and botchy box dye jobs will be filling your appointment books!
7. Website updates
Has your website been something that tends to fall by the wayside when there’s so many other things to get done in the salon? We know how easy it is for that to happen, don’t worry!
But now is a great time to get all the team to go through the website and check for old information, broken links and anything else that needs updating. It could even be time for a complete overhaul – did you know Shortcuts can help build a website for you? And guess what – it doesn’t have to cost the earth. Find out more on our website.
8. Deep clean your data
When was the last time you checked the health of your database?
Didn’t know that was a thing? Don’t fret. We’ve got a few quick things to do to get you on your way to squeaky clean contacts.
“We all know how databases can become messy, easily. A cleanse is fantastic. Whether capitalisation, numbers in the wrong fields, lack of emails, duplicates, or old clients that are unmarketable, yet taking up space in the system,” said Jonny, our Shortcuts Educator.
- Identify duplicate entries. Find the doubled up client cards, and spend some time identifying why they’re doubled up (is one the child of the other? Same name but different phone numbers?) and work out which one holds the most up to date information. Copy across any information that’s missing, and hit that delete button!
- Check last visit dates. Do you have a heap of old clients in your database that haven’t visited in years? Don’t hit delete – but file them away so that you can market to them differently. Maybe that’s your list to target with enticing offers or a “We Miss You” campaign.
- Complete missing data. Are some of your client forms missing important details? Now is the time to fill in the gaps! And what a great way to reconnect with clients – give them a call, everyone wants to feel noticed. While you’re chatting, give them an update on the business and invite them back in when you re-open. Two birds, one stone!
9. Create some content
While your team have a bit of downtime, get their creative juices flowing and inspire them to write some blog articles. Clients have a lot more free time at the moment, so use those experts in your team to write content for them. Then, you can use it on your social media, or in emails, to engage and connect with your clients.
Writing not your thing? Try a YouTube or IGTV video!
We’ve brainstormed some ideas for you – all you have to do is dish them out and write them up!
- The perfect at-home [mani/pedi/brow-groom/hair mask] in X simple steps
- What’s on your plate? How what you eat affects your [hair/skin/nails]
- Product reviews
- Back to the [60’s/70’s/80’s] with [stylist name]: a [hair/makeup/mani] tutorial for the ages
- A healthy breakfast – how [stylist] starts [his/her] day
- Top treatments to try at home
- [Split ends/split nails]: how to wrangle those rascals
- How to “Marie Kondo” your [hair products/skincare products/makeup products]
- A simple DIY [hair mask/face mask] you can make at home
- [Gua Sha/Head massage]: [stylist] shows you how
- Meet the team – get to know [stylist] in XX questions
There you have it! 9 productive tasks to get your team working on today. We hope you can find inspiration here to engage and energise your team. After all – it’s the people we surround ourselves with that will get us through the low times – and once we’re back on top, they’re the people to celebrate with as well!
Above all, your team are the ones that have stood by you through what will go down in history as one of the most challenging periods in most of our lives, both economically and emotionally. Use this time to connect with them, inspire them, and remind them how important they are to you and the business!