It’s been said that getting organized is the second most popular New Year’s resolution (health or beauty goals are always ranked first). If you’re like most people, you love the idea of being organized, but the thought of getting organized can be daunting.
As a hairstylist, there are many aspects of getting organized that are important to your business: handling incoming communications, setting priorities, balancing appointments, marketing, and more. Though these are all important skills to learn or improve, here we’re going straight to the heart of the most common problem for small business owners: procrastination.
You know there are things you ought to be doing; yet, you find yourself putting them off, and then they never seem to get done. Sending emails, calling clients and prospects, planning your upcoming specials, updating client files, adding email addresses to your database, purging old files—the list goes on and on. It’s no wonder many salon and spa professionals get overwhelmed and end up just focusing on the immediate needs of each day’s appointments. What can you do about it?
Taking a step back and making a list to start can help get you organized with your time when considering what goals to focus on. Here are 9 points to put into perspective:
1. Figure out how you are currently spending your time
Logging your time for a week by tracking your daily activities. This will make clear how much of your time is spent on unproductive thoughts, conversations, and activities. This can be done monthly, quarterly, or yearly.
2. Create a daily schedule and stick with it
Start your day with an organized to-do list. Before you leave work for the day, create a list of the most pressing tasks for the next day. This step allows you to get going as soon as you get to the salon.
3. Prioritize wisely
Eliminate tasks you shouldn’t be performing in the first place. Then identify the three or four most important tasks and do those first—that way, you make sure you finish the essentials.
4. Group similar tasks together
Create separate chunks of time for answering emails, making phone calls, filing, ordering, etc.
5. Avoid the urge to multitask
This is one of the simplest time-management tips for work, yet it can be one of the hardest to follow. Focus on the task at hand and block out all distractions. You lose time and decrease productivity when switching from one task to another.
6. Assign time limits to tasks
See step #1 to get an estimate of how long an activity takes to complete. Once you’ve spent the designated amount of time on that task, move on to the next important activity. You’ll find your productivity will improve and your to-do list will shrink when you have these parameters in place.
7. Build in buffers
Make breaks a part of your schedule. When you finish a task, give yourself time to breathe, even if it’s just five minutes. Take mini breaks to recharge.
8. Set up organizational systems
Create a filing system for documents. Unsubscribe from emails you no longer need. Have a calendar of promotions or PTO schedules marked ahead of time. Take the time to set up these systems once—it will benefit you in the long run.
9. Eliminate distractions
Social media, web browsing, co-workers, text messages—distractions can be endless. The key to time management is being proactive about getting things done. Limit interruptions. Take baby steps with this—identify your top two distractions and focus on conquering those.
Hair stylists need a web presence. Even if your primary marketing tool is word of mouth, people who receive a recommendation may want to check you out before they book an appointment. That’s why Associated Hair Professionals (AHP) makes it easy for your with our free website builder and templates for its members that’s easy to use, created specifically for hair stylists and barbers, and results in a professional, inviting website.
A website alone is not enough, Marketing is an ongoing part of any business. Whether you’re an independent contractor, a booth renter, or an employee at a large hair salon, marketing is important. Creating a solid marketing plan with the proper materials not only helps you gain new clients but also helps you keep your existing ones so you can continue to build a business that compensates you for your talent.
AHP's Marketing Toolkits provide you with a package of easy-to-create customized, branded materials, including:
- Appointment Reminder Cards
- Gift Certificates
- Loyalty Rewards Cards
- Referral Cards
- Social Media Cover Photos
Not an AHP member? Join today!
By AHP Staff