January 2013

Lisa Kind - Editor

The Mane Objective | by Marco Pelusi


To Thy Craft Be True: Authentic Beauty Professionals

What is our true responsibility as salon owners and stylists to our industry and its people? It is simple -- to be as authentic as humanly possible; to be genuine, valid, reliable and dependable.

But, most importantly, we must be true to our clients, our staff, our coworkers, our family and friends.

In today's era of quick promotion and access to the world on the internet, it's easy to get lost in what seems to be important, rather than what truly is. With everything in our world having been so tenuous now for quite some time, we need authenticity more than ever.

People crave sincere and steadfast people. We need to take the time to personally connect with each and every client that sits in our chair. Clients are looking for solutions to feel better about themselves in tough times; they are also looking for good customer relationships.

Why not make a New Year's resolution to honestly listen to everything that comes out of their mouths? There may be gold waiting there -- and if you're truly present in the moment -- there very well may be seeds of opportunity for both you and the client.

What does it mean to be authentic? How about another word? Legitimacy. Being a true professional means that you stick to your word -- you've got to stand behind what you're doing and back it up with accuracy. Put legitimacy and authenticity into action. This is what we owe our craft and our industry.

To be legitimate, you've got to give, give, give, and then give some more.

It takes focus, energy, and effort to actually listen and be present to everything going on around you. But, this focus is necessary to succeed in business in today's world. You just can't afford to miss a beat. And you've got to do it with heart, too. Your heart has to be in it, more now than ever before.

People desperately want and need to connect with their hairdresser and hair salon. This connected feeling is the single most important thing that brings them back to your chair. If my client tells me her scalp is giving her difficulty – GIVE = what shampoo may I recommend to her to help her? GIVE SOME MORE = may I also take the time to properly refer her to a dermatologist if needed?

Do I need to spend an extra 10 minutes chatting with her about this issue? If she needs to, then yes, do it. Do it! Really be there for your clients and listen to what they're telling you. You're more than a haircut (although your technical ability must come through and deliver, too).

You're often a therapist, a concierge, a friend. You're a leader and mentor in your community and as well as for that client and his/her network. Become the authentic individual that you are meant to be in your everyday work.

Where authentic responsibility also comes into play is in the products and tools we select to work with. As hair care industry professionals, what we place in our hands to use on our clients mean everything. Everything from a pair of shears to the proper usage of developer to bobby pins is valuable to us.

We're an inventory-heavy industry -- it takes a lot of stuff to do good hair. Do your research and let your staff and your clients know what you've discovered. Research the best possible tools you can find. Don't your clients deserve it?

Think through what you're working with right now. Is there a tool of some kind that doesn't serve you well? Then get rid of it. Get a new one… for a New Year. Isn't it time to do some housecleaning, and find the most legitimate tools you can? I think so. Now is the time.

So, the moral of this story is to be as legit as an authentic hair industry professional can be. Whether you're working on a client or running a salon -- take time, take each moment -- and ask, how can I be authentic today? How can I do my personal best today and offer the finest level of service possible?

This legitimate authenticity is the true responsibility to the industry -- to its people -- and to ourselves as professionals. It is this legitimate authenticity that you will be remembered for, above all else.

Be true to yourself. Be true to your clients. Be true to your craft. The rest will fall into place.

Marco Pelusi is globally recognized as a haircolor trainer and platform artist. Marco Pelusi Hair Studio, Inc. was named Best Hair Color in Los Angeles by KTTV Fox11’s “myfoxla Hot List” competition. Pelusi created the Marco Collagen Color Guard HairCare System, the collagen system developed for color and chemically treated hair. For more information, visit www.marcopelusi.com.



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