Offering the highest standard of salon consultancy, salon coaching and skills development

Hair stylist. salon service. training



mike vallance

 Hair stylist. salon

Designed for Salon owners, stylists, hair industry professionals.Created as a source to offer advise  on all things related to the education knowledge skill experience. A place to share thoughts post comments and idea’s.

Training your team home or away?

For a hair stylist a big decision when choosing hairdressing as a career is .The Salon training being offered learning and understanding salon services. Learning how to become a fully trained hairdresser. With so many options. How does the next generation hair stylist decide? A huge topic.!!  A much discussed topic. A subject with so many choices. How does someone make a choice? What is the best path to get well trained?  How do you make those right career decisions?

As a Salon owner or manager. How do you decide the best way to train and attract new staff and offer them the best training one that will benefit both the salon and potential trainee. How do you follow the training guide lines set out to attain an NVQ level of qualification. Is the NVQ qualification reflective of the standards we require as salon owners  to introduce a newly qualified stylist into the salon as proficient at all levels and skills? Or is the NVQ a no value qualification? Do you feel that the training guide lines the syllabus is current and up to date.

cutting techniques


With so many Academy’s. Colleges. Hairdressing Schools. How do you the salon compete to get  New trainee’s? These institutions especially the private enterprises are designed to teach but more importantly to some  they are a business and so they have to make money. They do this by charging the students and charging the models a perfect equation. Should the standards be higher.The manufactures. The large colour Companies  offer discounts and send in technicians and educators. But these representatives are company ambassadors and as such sales people.  There job to educate the products with a view to future sales. In many cases they do not teach or share the chemistry of products in any depth.With so many options and choices when it comes to training and updating skills  how do you decide where to get the best training? The best value for money.

As stated a Contentious subject.

The standards taught in many of these establishments can and does vary considerable many of the tutors left salon work for personal reason then decide to teach what they know. My question is did they ever really it make it the salon ! Do they really care or is it just a job with the title Teacher!! Not all i must add some are true professional in ever sense committed passionate and keen to see improvement and change.

My experience with Colleges and Academy’s has been rather dulled by lack of commitment attitude poor standard, lack of knowledge. They have just been doing the same thing term after term year after year and are out of touch with reality and products. How they work they don’t prepare their students for the real world they leave college with a huge attitude fake it till you make it.  Newly qualified and think they know it all the reality is they have very little salon real life experience need help extra training not that employable. [ oh but they do have NVQ level 2]

The hair industry and profession


I am aware that many who teach are very committed and that hands are tied by legislation and paper work. Passion commitment must be instilled in these young creative minds. Bodies such a HABIA do and offer so much but always they are limited by funding and so staffing Ideally they should be regional however good a travelling road show is, how exciting and creative and talented they stylist’s and educator’s there is only so much they can do at an event! it’s not enough.

As a home based business or mobile stylist if qualified you owe it to your self and your clients to keep your self current up dated and educated stay current. If your goal is to become self employed or mobile then just as important to seek out the best training possible and commit to up dates training days. Working alone can be very lonely and uninspired so keeping in contact with fellow stylists is key to success. Look at what training update your local distributor is putting on take advantage of courses being run. We need salon owners to work with FE colleges and training institutions of deliver better high standards of training at all a levels. A collaborative approach to training these young stylist inspiring them providing them  with the tools they require to be a success to have  job and career success. to go on and mentor others!

As a Salon owner/manager you owe it to yourself your salon and staff to offer the very best standard of education service half in salon with days release or do you take it as a salon owner to build and train your team this takes work and commitment can be so rewarding to both you staff and clients alike. Your other option being day release farming the training out an option but leaves little control of skill or knowledge being taught or eventual standard.



To train your own team takes planning hard work commitment but the rewards are huge, lets take a look at how huge a task is it to train in house. Planning this coming up with syllabus a realistic time frame to cover all the topic’s to cover all the different skills and tasks to reach the various levels of NVQ qualification.

Having a schedule that works for the salon in the salon for both staff and trainee and Clients, yes get clients involved they are a great source for models and encouragement remember this is a two way commitment you get the new enthusiastic willing to learn trainee who wants to learn works hard for your part you have to train a share knowledge educate and are responsible to train this person to the highest of standards.

I would suggest targets laid out and agreed upon as training standard to be agreed by all parties laid out weekly, monthly with reviews along the way. For the help the staff get in the Salon they have to be committed to be part of this exercise to share knowledge, educate to be part of this salon experience part of building the team.


Staff should commit to model nights if any given stylist has a skill or is more qualified in any given field [e.g maybe hair colour] then use this encourage staff to do training updates to get involved as Educators platform artists do in house and out source training. All of this is great for business staff talk to clients clients share with friends and family that their salon do so much on the education front.

Have clear goals targets and standards. For hair cutting you have to teach the student to master basic’s before moving on.Remembering that every one learns at a different pace but clear defined levels to ability to achieve should be laid out and agreed upon. The same should be said for colour and perming. note that with these two subjects both carry great deal of technical information that must be learned chemistry and understanding as well as safety.

The hands on application of product the mixing the timing it goes on and on.The good news is there is a wealth of information available to us either on line or books that can be purchased to build up a library of knowledge and place of resource. As we know as hairdressers we don’t like study or reading but to succeed knowledge and education are key.

Examples of the art of hair colouring real hair colourd to look natural from very blonde.







Below Example of colour match for the pre coloured hair extension: 


The Team building:

This exercise of getting qualified staff involved in training also deals with problems of not sharing being  a team player issues of EGO a thing that is prevalent with us stylist. This ego issue can also become an issue when self employed it’s a natural way we can convince our selves that we are good enough know enough not to bother with up dates  a dangerous path to allow ourselves to go down it will eventually effect business and client retention be honest with your self  stay connected with other stylists. In case of ego it’s a safety barrier we project to hide insecurity or lack of knowledge and or skill so the in salon training helps with these issues. The incentive for qualified staff involvement could be the salon contributing to training events partially or fully encourage all levels of  entering competition both for the individual and for the salon.


All of the above is possible not over night but over time the rewards are huge both in time and money not to mention how proud you will feel when that kid you took in is a busy successful fully booked stylist on the salon floor. Nothing is easy this all takes lots of planning it will have its pitfalls and challenges but its a journey an adventure you and your staff your team can take together. Do not get lazy and abuse this agreement as cheap labor it does and will come back on you and ultimately damage your Business and staff relations. For my part with many years and a great deal of experience I would be happy to work with any one thinking of embarking on this in house training scheme. With so many options and choices when it comes to training and updating skills  how do you decide where to get the best training the best value for money?

I think any newly qualified stylist should think very carefully about going directly from college into any self employed homes based situation.Get some salon experience.Some client experience. Some service experience. Team commitment. communication and Consultation skills.


Through your distributor and in conjunction with one of the major professional companies? Is it courses seminar’s.Saving money for ticket’s to go see the odd platform artist. Maybe you just don’t bother you know it all you know enough many stylist have this view done my training don’t need any more.

We should never stop learning and challenging our selves and their are so many avenues to explore not just your hands on skills. What direction would you like to see your career going in. Platform work, Artistic team member, Technical educator, Salon owner, Teacher, maybe your passion is competition work, maybe something more down to earth successful and busy we all have different goals dreams aspirations.


What ever it is with help you we can only improve with help and sharing experience with each other, with so many products on the market offering new improved chemistry we must have the knowledge and understanding of them to decide if they are what we want do what we require.

In this economy the challenges of building up a successful clientele are more demanding. We have to have a edge we have to be able to justify why what we offer what we do is much better that that home colour application we have to be able to explain why. We have to have the people skills. The service skills .The consultation skills . The communication skills. Do you have all these are you at your best all the time?

When we see in the new’s for the most part people rate happiness as 5.4 that’s plain sad is your glass half full or half empty we are in the business of filling that glass of helping people feel and look better can you do you do that?

I have spent many years having lots of training my goal is to share that with others who would like to learn and share my experience both technical hands on. But also the personal.The people skills. The salon skills. Those things that make clients want to come back the things that make the salon run smoothly a great place to work create and have fun yes fun  hairdressing has to be fun!!  Often we get lost in just trying to busy you should not have to try! If you are on top of your game doing a great job being creative offering great service  you should not have to worry about that appointment book your client retention and ultimately your pay packet.

Having the Skill the knowledge being up to date with products both for professional salon use and retail recommendation , Having an understanding of how over the counter colour works being able to explain this to clients all key to that success. Having your NVQ qualification is a great start but it is not enough it’s a starting place a foundation from which to grow. Having a salon but not staying current not inspiring your team will in the end lead to decent thinking your busy enough and know everything is frankly dangerous and driven by ‘EGO ‘not a healthy place to be.

This is not a lecture just some honest sharing  some insight from many years in our ever changing ever challenging industry it is driven from wanting to share wanting to see the standards be high remain high for us all to be professional creative and passionate about our work our profession what is a huge chunk of our lives.

Interested lets chat and take a journey together many ways to connect.  The ways you can learn to stop looking for new clients and cherish the ones you have.  It is a fact that 50% in some cases as much as 83% of new clients to a salon never return that’s a great deal of lost  potential business. A long article but so much to discuss. Need help with your salon planning implementing change facing challenges,need answer to some questions help is a click away !

The ‘Three R’s’ 
”Reputation. Recommendation. Retention”. 
It’s not built on that constant looking for new clients it’s looking after what you have! It’s investing in your self and your business and those around you.


This journey, this career, is wonderful – challenging, inspiring, and yes, hard work.

Our industry is in constant change and is sometimes criticised. For lacking vision in some areas. However there is an ever growing body of professionals. That have a firm commitment to our industry, they have a passion for change, to raise standards through education and sharing. Leadership, education and team incentives.Will over time and with commitment give any individual that ability to do exceptional work and to be more creative. Leadership and management help create an amazing work environment for all concerned. So key for success for all concerned.
This journey. This career, is wonderful – Challenging. Inspiring and yes can and will be hard work. but the rewards are worth all the effort.
Thank you all for letting me share some thoughts with you today.These are inspirational, passionate, industry professionals.They have a vision. These are the people I want on my bus to learn from, share with, take a journey with. Get inspired. Connect with driven motivated industry professional. challenge your self. invest in ones /your self 

Are you driver or passenger !

 There are no guarantees in life and ones career and career choice is no different thing happen and its how we deal with them that defines us. Jobs change relationships come and go the one thing that remains after training is our skill both hands on creative and the ones we learn about people and communication about caring about being a team player. Constantly developing new skills staying current is so very important.

I also think that we need to always look at the WhyAsk the question Why are we in business whats it for? OrWhy do we want to go into to business what is success? Why do I suggest this I think by asking and exploring the why we get to the motive behind why we want to be in business what is true success. Why the will also help us to understand our true values this in turn helps us to follow the path to the success we want  and desire. It will help us to surround ourselves with the right team those who share our values and vision.


Remember. Salon success. Stylist success. Business success are all linked together it’s Team success. Its never about any destination only ever about a journey taking the right people on that journey makes it enjoyable maybe even fun!

Mike B2MR

The salon and the S word now available in book and e book format for links to purchase and reviews Click here or on the image.


The Salon & the ‘S’ Word

 Written by Mike Vallance

My web site is Back2myroots: B2MR feel free to check in

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3 Responses to “Hair stylist. salon service. training”

  1. That’s great to know all these information. Pursuing a career in hair dressing industry is ideally suited to anyone who enjoys being with other people and is meticulous when it comes to attention to detail. With these attributes, and a willingness to learn, the opportunities are endless.

  2. […] experience in being part of a team working with the  public getting more of an understanding of the service industry. Most importantly learning about people and understanding how to listen to them the art of […]

  3. Sonia says:

    Bravo! You are so accurate. We have to stay committed to lifelong learning to challenge ourselves and to GROWING the culture that we want in our Businesses.

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