There’s something rejuvenating and refreshing about a new year. All of a sudden, we feel the optimism that things could be different. We have so much faith in this new beginning that more so than any other time during the year, goals are set and plans are made for success. We tell ourselves with conviction, “This will be the year that I finally ____!”
But why? What makes January 1, 2018 so different than December 31, 2017? Sorry guys, the answer is nothing. Nothing is different about January 1, 2018, unless there’s something different within you. No matter what your goals are for 2018, in order to make room for that success, there are three things that you most certainly must leave behind in 2017.
Even the seemingly legit ones must go. Holding on to excuses for why something might fail or isn’t currently working provides too many reasons not to try. For every excuse made about why something won’t succeed, you’re eliminating a potential solution before you give it an honest, 100% attempt. For example, if you’re among the legions of hairstylists still holding onto the belief that Amazon is “stealing” your retail business, you’re not going to do any better selling retail in 2018. Amazon isn’t going to suddenly go away in 2018, so you’re going to have to turn it into part of the solution for increasing your retail sales rather than the excuse for your dismal numbers. Using Amazon as a scapegoat for your lack of sales skills is so 2017; this year we’re going to work with Amazon, learn from Amazon, and be as successful as Amazon. No matter the challenge, no excuses may be brought into 2018.
2) Preconceived ideas of how things “should” be done.
There’s more than one way to craft the perfect ponytail, emulate the perfect sun kiss, or achieve the perfect fade. When it comes to hair, we know that the more techniques in our repertoire, the better hairstylists we’ll be! It’s so crazy then how many hairstylists get an idea for how success in the hair industry “should” be achieved and turn up their nose at any method that differs. Sally thinks Susan is crazy because she still carries business cards everywhere and doesn’t have an Instagram account, but Susan’s book is full. Susan thinks it’s unfair Sally has ninety thousand Instagram followers and a successful education business when Sally’s only been in the industry for five years. Sam is upset Sandy left her salon in favor of owning a salon suite while Sandy is upset Sam wouldn’t accommodate her request to rent a chair within Sam’s salon when she topped out of the commission model. For as often as we love to change our hair, it’s incredible how resistant most hair professionals are to changing salon procedures, systems, strategies, and ideas. It’s time we leave prior notions of how things “should” be done within our industry back in 2017 in order to open ourselves up to the myriad ways things can be done in 2018.
3) Silo mentality.
Within the hair industry it is so easy to slip into a silo mentality, regardless of where you’re working. We know that filling our chairs, satisfying our clients, and increasing the size of our paychecks are ultimately our own responsibility. That’s a lot of pressure, and it can have the effect of putting us in silos with only enough time and energy to look out for our own interests. We must devote time and energy to building each other up. Even if you’re the only hair professional in your salon, you are not alone. It is time we look at every hair professional as a co-worker and partner-in-crime. Community, sisterhood/brotherhood, and comradery are the new black. How can we all help each other to achieve all of our goals in 2018?
If you want 2018 to be different, you must be different. Say goodbye to your excuses, preconceived notions of how things “should” be done, and any remnants of silo mentality. Those things have no place in 2018 if it is going to be a year of success, growth, and unity.
This article originally appeared in Stylist Newspapers, January 2018.