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Salon virgin

Tamara Forrest-Smith

Hairdressing industry contributes to bigger chunk of European business start-ups, but are hairdressers encouraged enough to flourish in today’s economic climate?

According to The Economist publication, Europe produces plenty of businesses in the hairdressing and the like. The question is how many of those new  entrepreneurs can tell success stories, and most importantly what is holding business sectors such as hairdressing going from “corner shop” to taking the world…or maybe at least part of it.

Whilst some might think of this and that reason why businesses fail, to our surprise studies have shown rather unexpected stats, here are some of them we hope to give you different view on your business.

Free to fall

Many aspiring entrepreneurs simply leave. It appears if you are French, or rather a business residing in France, and your business goes under, you don’t get a second chance. That probably accounts to a greater numbers why so many start-ups in the SF Bay area with French founders. SO if you are in America, your chances to recover is usually quick – another reason, and a good one to try with less mistakes you made first time round.

In Britain you will be discharged from a bankrupcy after 12 months Germany can take six years to get a fresh start, whilst France takes 9!

Finances – or rather lack of it

Getting your initial capital from “friends, fools and family” is relatively easy. You probably remember your first time business venture, getting finance for your first salon shop was tough but rather possible. But who do you turn if your  ambitions go beyond your local town in need of massive cash injection without being a technology company?

Labour Law

Some businesses would tell you that growing bigger would be easier with team and dedicated staff, however, is it as easy as it sounds building a team? Apparently not so if you are based in Europe compared to elsewhere. If you can survive your own business nightmares, and are now in need to reduce staff costs quickly and employ cheaper labour, perheps just a contractor or even outsource further in the East, cost of firing and paying out redundancy packages (often for up to 6 months) can be as draining as going bust itself. Not to mention other labour, favoured towards employee rights to having near unlimited paid sick days and the like. If you are in Britain though keep tracking Labour laws, as it is changing to give more flexibility and rights to employees.

If you thought how to get salon clients and how to hire stylists who don’t leave my salon were only reasons of your  entrepreneurial  nightmares you have other limitations to think as well.

One might ask, with all those restrictions, do smart salon owners simply stop growing or can we beat all the hurdles listed above, keep learning, keep refining the vision and finding new ways of going from good to great, after all we’ve had so many great success stories in the hairdressing world?

We welcome your comments,
Tamara Machavariani, Salon Punk

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