Have you ever made a mistake with a customer? Of course you have! Maybe you cut someone’s hair uneven or you just couldn’t get the nail color right? It happens every day and to every spa or salon professional. You are not perfect and your day will come when you must re-do a style, cut, or whatever service it is that you offer. In this article, you will learn a process that I have created called the CURL© method. This method is applicable to all industries because it’s simple, easy and it is not rocket science.
The first letter in the CURL© method is C and that means CALM DOWN! Yes, stay calm. I have made many mistakes and will probably make many more but over time, I have learned that when you remain calm, you think logically. You must take your emotions out of the situation. When you remain calm, you can evaluate the situation much more clearly. Plus, energy spreads and if you are not calm, your customer most likely will not be either. Two calm heads are better than none! To become calm, take a few deep breaths, avoid making any dramatic facial expressions (that tends to excite the customer and make the situation worse), and whatever you do, don’t cry. This does not help the situation. If you need to step away and find another stylist or co-worker to help you calm down, then please do. To move to the next letter in the CURL© method, you must calm down first.
The second letter in the phrase is U and that means to uncover the issue. Sometimes, you may not ever get another opportunity to address a dissatisfied customer because they do not allow you the chance to. So, whenever you receive feedback regarding the service, now is your chance to remain professional and uncover the issue. First, apologize that their expectations were not fulfilled and thank them for allowing you the opportunity to do so. Begin by asking questions to help guide you to where the dissatisfaction lies. For example, can you explain to me what you do not like about the cut or color? What were your expectations for the service?
After you discover the problem, then you can move to the next step in the CURL© process, which is resolve the situation. Resolving a problem or a challenge is key; especially when you can do it while remaining professional. When you resolve a problem, this is the time when you can address the problem and successfully give your guest the look or service that he or she was originally going for. In this step, it is crucial to meet their expectations. If you don’t succeed in this step, this could possibly mean losing this client for good. If you have time between the initial visit and the returning appointment, research the technical skill that you need help on and/or reach out to a seasoned, successful stylist/technician that is in your field to get advice on how to approach the appointment.
The final step in the CURL© method is to LEARN from the situation. In life, it is important to learn from situations, good or bad. This is what helps you grow as a person. Don’t beat yourself up over it, it is not worth stressing over. If you ask seasoned professionals if they still make mistakes, I guarantee you that they would tell you that they do. It’s how they recover and bounce back that makes them so successful. Whenever you service a guest, it is important to always take notes about their visit; such as any allergies that they may have, all formulas that you have used on them (even if they were successful or not), and anything extra that you need to remember before providing their service. By following my proven CURL© method, you will be able to reduce stress when appointments do not go as planned, improve the customer experience, and increase clientele, which will result in more money for you!
Demetria Brand Gilkey is a Bowling Green, KY native where she earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Marketing in 2008 from Western Kentucky University. After working in Corporate America, Demetria felt that her desire to attend cosmetology school was yet to be fulfilled. So, she enrolled at Paul Mitchell the School-Louisville. In 2012, Demetria received the prestigious BEACON award by participating in a national cosmetology contest. Shortly after, she opened her own salon, Hair by Demi B in Louisville, KY; later re-naming it Curly by Nature. She has built a huge clientele all by creating amazing unforgettable experiences with her guests.