Training for salon staff: Preparing to reopen after lockdown 3.0
Rebecca Day, an HR consultant who specialises in the hair and beauty industry, says, “There’ll be so much that is new, training for your staff is essential. This can be anything from a hygiene course to talking through your risk assessment with them and any new company policies you have in place.”
Reopening your salon again means your staff will need to remember the ongoing guidelines from the latest cleaning procedures and social distancing measures through to how you talk to your clients.
Make sure everyone remains up-to-date with in-salon training before you reopen. Rebecca says, “In the first instance I’d suggest emailing all your staff and asking them to share their concerns. Before you do anything, ask them how they’re feeling about coming back. Give them a brief overview of what you’re doing and ask them what concerns they have. You can then think about how to address those concerns and build all that into your staff training session before reopening.”
“There will be people worried about coming back to the salon. You need to train your staff on how to manage those concerns.”
After another long break from work, you’ll need to get everyone back up to speed with your new processes for each treatment or procedure.
Before reopening, make sure your company policy and the Covid-19 section of your staff handbook are in line with the latest government guidelines. Rebecca says, “As part of the training, go through the handbook and make it clear staff must follow all of the health and safety policies, rules and procedures. It’s also important to let them know about their own personal responsibilities and what they need to do if they come into contact with Covid-19.”
For social distancing reasons, continue implementing staff rotas and enforcing your workers’ ‘bubbles.’ The best way of doing this is with a Team A and Team B mould with each team working alternate days. Rebecca explains “If someone in Team A were to come down with Covid, Team B wouldn’t be at risk. As part of your training you’ll need to talk your staff through all these changes.”
Client relationship training
One vital step to continue from your first reopening is how you interact with your clients. While it’s likely most have gotten used to these changes, chances are there are some who’ll need brushing up or are unsure of how to proceed. Before reopening, draw up a list of all your client procedures based on your post-lockdown measures from how you do consultations to taking payments. You can then re-train your team (and yourself!) on all the ways you’re working and how they can talk to clients about these changes.
Rebecca says, “The big thing that people should be focusing on ready for reopening is the customer experience. Ensure your staff use observation, in-depth questioning and active listening to understand your customer’s needs and expectations. These skills can be rusty if you’ve been out of it for a while, so a refresher for your team is a good idea.”
Rebecca also recommends giving your staff a list of ‘talking points’ to cover any possible questions from customers. Make sure you update them so they know how to manage their clients’ new expectations. “In one salon I work with, the owner is saying for the first six to eight weeks he won’t do a full head of highlights as it will be too long to have someone in the salon. So, it’s getting to grips with what the customer wants and also learning how to manage their expectations. There will also be people worried about coming back to the salon. You need to train your staff on how to manage those concerns.”
Hygiene and infection control training
When you reopen, it’s vital to make sure you continue cleaning and sanitising all your work areas and equipment regularly. You’ll also need to reassure customers that you’re continuing to take all the right steps to protect them during their appointment and prevent the spread of infection.
Barbicide Covid-19 Certification course
Barbicide is offering a free, online course for hair and beauty professionals which covers everything you need to do to keep your salon hygienic. You’ll also get a certificate to show clients you’re up-to-date with the latest in infection control. Find out more about the Barbicide Covid-19 course.
Infection control course
Influency Consultancy offer paid-for courses written by a leading infection specialist nurse. These courses include advice on cleaning, PPE and how to stop the spread of infection for hair and beauty professionals. Find out more about the Influence Consultancy's courses here.
Other training courses
If you want to upskill even further before salons reopen again, check out these courses…
Behind the Mask course
Cases of domestic abuse have risen since the first coronavirus lockdown. The Behind the Mask course is designed to help you spot the signs your client may be experiencing abuse from a partner, ex-partner or relative. The free online training also gives you advice on how to respond and offer support. Find out more about the Behind the Mask course.
Mental health first aid
The coronavirus pandemic continues to make its impact on mental health, with many ‘people in crisis’ according to Royal College of Psychiatrists.
The Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England courses are part of a national scheme which aims to improve the nation’s mental health. The online courses will help you spot the signs of stress, anxiety or other mental health issues among your staff and clients.
Rebecca says, “Observing your employees, using in-depth questioning and actively listening to identify their personal needs and expectations also helps you to spot the early warning signs that something might be wrong with them emotionally. It’s a good idea, as a salon manager, to practice this so if one of your team is struggling you can signpost them to the right professional help.” Find out more about the Mental Health First Aid courses.