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Tamara Forrest-Smith

This is a salon business story shared by one of our salon customers, we think it’s inspiring and interesting to share, enjoy!
My name is Kelly….my salon Flames Hairzone 111a Felixstowe Road Ipswich SuffolkIip3 8ea

How i got started..

Well i was only 20 and already had turned a men’s only barbers salon in to a unisex salon, me being a unisex hairstylist the condition to taking the job on was to still do lady’s …I built up a massive clientele just on recommendation alone.

Time came to leave as i was being paid less than a barber who was higherd after me to do the clientele which already existed there, so i moved on and went self employed for 9 months in a different salon to get money together for my own shop.I made this choice due to the faked i wanted a salon which offered a friendly great service, in which i got to hirer and control a fantastic team to work with, always being fare to hopefully gain the same respect back…

Now only 21 my business was up and running and boy was it running things were great my staff were fab and all was well…i done everything i could to keep clients and staff happy working all hours never taking a break..i was an out of town salon but my training was second to none my standard  high…i know now looking back for my age dam i was good!!! But my business IE contracts securing record cards and files was not so good as i was too trusting, and when i fell pregnant it began.

I only took 8 weeks maternity 1week before and 7 after but clients talk, stylists see £££ signs,  i was venerable knowing i couldn’t get into the salon and watch over my business, they wrote addresses! numbers! names! of my clients and left with my business in toe. I managed to get back in to the salon straight away and pull half back. Working full time with a new born! But i didn’t go under and pulled it back…

Back on track business booming i had my sat girl who then became my junior to stylist trained fully with all my tricks of the trade as she had bein by my side watching listening buzzing with enthusiasm a little Minnie me on the floor we worked played ate partied even family weekends together…i helped buy her first car…

Then boom i was pregnant with second child again same maternity 8 weeks.

She too took everything and started up her own business less than 1 mile away. This was the biggest blow ever…hurt anger betrayed and all just because i started a family worst of all she was my great friend.

Clients did not no wat to do we were the same!!!

I had trained her but she could give them 8oclock morning or 8oclock night appointments, she was new young and had all the attention to give….god it was hard but i wasn’t going to give up and again i pulled it back, this time it took a little longer but it came back I got stronger busy and thing were good ( success i hear you say)

well you would of thought i would of learnt but i had a third child, it wasn’t so bad this time but i now had 3 children under the age of 4!!!

Its been tuff but I’m still here 11 years on and no one has completely taken me down yet.

I am the only person i know around in my area who has 3 children as well as there own salon and still work full time in the business while juggling family too.

So i do see myself as a success regardless of how small my business is, a great success in fact i have turned out 3 stylists who have gone on to run there own business’s, 1 who is managing a big salon franchise and 4 more stylists still working as hairdressers in other salons.

Time has gone on and wounds have healed, I too understand that a stylist has no business with out her clients…this is a cut throat industry.

Its nice to know that who ever has been trained with in my salon has made it ( massive success i feel to me)

It has only being this last year I’ve had business drop so I’m getting my backside in gear putting records on to computer to protect myself. I will be joining face book and trying to get my name out there as i have never really had to advertise before now and i need staff so i can give clients options.

Advise….your a boss so be a boss!!! be strong but fare!….remember when YOU were late due to drink and parties….don’t give them a reason to lie, make sure they tell the truth…they can make it up on a day you need them…find it funny let them know this!!! ( obviously if its only now an then)make sure everyone pulling there wait team players and NO bitching or bad vibes on the floor EVER…protect your salon client information..Last but not least TRAINING share it all if they say cant…. no such thing as cant!!! go for it….cant is just the nerves.

Hope this was ok…. love kelly xxx

Thank’ to Kelly for sharing the story, please post yours too below or email us

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