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Get ‘Them At Hello – First Impressions Are Everything!

Sam Villa

Author Sam Villa | Founding Partner of Sam Villa

Photo Credit: Luster Salon, Clarksville, TN

According to Forbes Magazine, researchers from NYU found that we make eleven major decisions about one another in the first seven seconds of meeting. In other words, first impressions are EVERYTHING!

So, why aren'’t we as salon professionals giving more attention to the simplest things that can make those first seven seconds more impactful? To succeed and grow, we need to fine-tune our service to be exceptional servant leaders behind the chair.

Personal Appearance

One of the easiest things you can do to maximize your first impression is to simply put on a jacket. Present yourself as a salon professional who is both confident and successful; even if you take your jacket off before you start your services, wearing it during the consultation promotes you as a professional which will gain the confidence of your guest. If you take yourself seriously, so will your guests.

Make Your Guests Feel Welcome

Another tip is to acknowledge guests immediately. From the front desk to assistants to other team members and yourself, make guests feel welcome, comfortable and acknowledged…, there'’s nothing worse than a guest standing alone feeling uncomfortable and invisible – chances are, they won'’t come back.

In our salon, we’'ve written a welcome statement to help break the ice, give staff the confidence to approach guests and keep greetings consistent and professional. Here’s a sample welcome statement that introduces both parties, reinforces the salon name, expresses appreciation for choosing the salon, inquires about how the guest came to be at the salon and communicates that the guest is acknowledged and their wants and needs are important and will be met.

Sample Welcome Scripts

“Hello (guest name) welcome to (salon name), I’'m (stylist/greeter name).

Thank you for choosing our salon today - how did you hear about us? I want to make sure you have a great experience and you love your hair, so before we begin, I’'d like to have a consultation to discuss your hair and what style you'’re interested in.”

Seems simple enough, but I'’ve heard a lot of welcome statements that weren'’t so welcoming:

“Hi Jennifer, they have you down for an appointment with me but this is my lunch, so I'’m going to move you to someone else’s book if that’s okay.” “

Hi, are you John? Come on back and we’ll get you shampooed. You’'re getting a haircut, right?”

“Hi, are you Marcy? Let’'s get you shampooed, you'’re late and I have someone after you so we need to get started.” “

Hi Marcy, I have you down for a haircut at 2:00 - you’'re really early, I hope you don’t expect to get in sooner because I’'m really busy right now.”

“Hi, are you Susan? What are we doing today?” “I don'’t have you down for a highlight, this says “haircut.” I can do the haircut but you'’ll have to reschedule the highlight, I have to leave at 4:00.”

Take the time to make a great first impression; you can do anything for 7 seconds! Remember to savor the moment, you're not only setting up a positive experience for your own guest, you'’re creating anticipation for all other guests too. The goal is to make everyone feel acknowledged and special enough to want to come back.

Click here for successful scripts and phone greetings for your salon front desk.