1. Coming together as a community.
First is that we hold the success of their business as our primary concern. Without them there would be no us, and that shouldn’t be a platitude or nostrum; we must believe it and build everything else upon it. So while you may have a particular opinion re the severity or lack of severity of viral spread, be sensitive of the situation your clients are in. They have ALL been struggling for the past few months so don’t raise prices, insist there’s no problem, or attempt a business-as-usual approach.
Remember you won’t be able to operate as quickly as usual. Proactively incorporating personal protection into your work methods will take more time. Don’t treat it as a burden but with the attitude that together we will get through this. The last thing people want to hear is woes about not working and making money.
2. Following health code regulations.
Health is a top priority not just for you but for your customers as well. Each business owner, stylist, sharpener should be following the rules and regulations set by their state. This means keeping your tools and products clean, wearing a mask, and following occupancy limitations per room.
Disinfecting by extended immersion for anything is not a good idea. The chemicals can weaken, corrode and disintegrate resin and metal. Quickly immerse your comb or clip (or shear) in the solution and then rinse with water before setting on a dry, washed and unused towel. This process, including changing of the towel, should be repeated for every client.
As for disinfecting multiple combs and brushes in batches, we would suggest you dip and rinse, and then layer the tools in dry, washed and unused towel before storing it all in a plastic bin with lid. Prior to inserting the layered bundle, the inside of the bin and lid can be sprayed with disinfectant for added insurance.
Regarding disinfecting brushes, if they are wooden brushes use a spray disinfectant, rinse and place on a dry, washed and unused towels. Layering the brush or brushes in the towel is recommended, but allowing to air dry per the ambient temperature of the room is preferred. enclosing the wet wooden brush in the box is not suggested, as the wood tends to absorb water and will not dry.
Be proactive with PPE (personal protective equipment) for yourself and your business methods. Go a step farther and offer PPE at cost to your clients. There are many reliable sellers of PPE in the beauty industry and take advantage of specials they are offering now.
3. Alert your clients.
Make your personal protection a calling card to your clients. Have you gone to Starbucks and seen how they hand your orders over? They use a clear plastic tray to minimize contact. There are lots of best practices out there that you can invest in and incorporate into your work process. Let them know the dates you expect to re-open (or if you are already currently open), hours of operation, and what precautions you are taking to ensure their health and safety.
All social media accounts should be updated on your hours of operation, workplace policies, and scheduling. If you’re already open or if you expect to be so soon, let them know! If you are accepting mail-in’s or drop-off’s make sure your customers know how to proceed.
Set up appointments with your customers/clients. Creating an online appointment calendar will help you and your customers. This way, they won’t have to wait in lines, making sure to keep your occupancy to a minimum. If you’re not as tech savvy, just having them text you! The important action is to have customers set up appointments and avoiding walk-ins.
4. Preparing for an influx of customers
As people return to work, you will be met with an influx of customers. Be prepared with the proper tools and operating system you will need to function.
A few stylists are using different sets of tools with different customers (shears, combs, etc.) in order to keep their tools sanitized while being able to manage increased bookings.
By having an organized method of communicating with your customers, setting up appointments, and a steady supply of tools/products needed; you can be prepared to re-enter the workforce.
We here at the IBSA are wishing everyone a healthy transition back into the workforce. While work may never be the same again, we will always be here for you.