Must have customer service skills to succeed
You are entering a field that involves having very close and intimate interaction with individuals. You are responsible for the most important grooming to a man, which is his hair. Hair is the first thing most people see and notice about a person. It is always a privilege when someone trusts you with the responsibility of making them look great.
To provide great customer services, you will have to be as consistent as possible showing how you care about your responsibility, that you are listening and willing to follow directions, and you are creative enough to add your own contributions. Customer services is all about fulfilling your clients’ emotional needs of being valued.
Must have to provide great customer service:
Patience: Be patient when client get frustrated or come in confused.
Attentiveness: Listen to what they are saying, both verbally and body language.
Communication Skills: Keep it simple no need to get to technical.
Knowledge of the style or product: Thorough knowledge of styles and products is critical to helping clients with their needs.
Ability to use positive language: Avoid using the word ‘No’. If a client comes in when you are totally booked, schedule them at the closest time possible instead of saying No to servicing them.
Acting Skills: Every great Barber who provides customer service will need basic acting skills. It is necessary to maintain the usual cheery and upbeat persona in spite of dealing with people who are rude, unpleasant and grumpy.
Keeping your emotions under control: Leave behind your personal life whenever you step into the store.
Time management skills: Provide customer their required service in an efficient manner. If talking with a customer, be sure to keep cutting during the conversation. Ask questions that require more than a yes or no answer. Always try to entertain your client while you work efficiently.
Know your ability: Do not waste time trying to go above and beyond for a customer in an area where you will just end up wasting both of your time.
Ability to “read” a customer: Look and listen for subtle cues about their mood, patience level, personality, uncomfortable movements and you will go far in keeping your customer interaction positive.
A calming presence: Do not lose your cool. If someone else is grumpy; be calm, confident, and reassuring and you will be able to pacify even the most irate clients and turn them into lifelong customers.
Be goal-oriented: Have goals for time, greetings, and other things that build your business.
Ability to handle surprises: A barber can make a mistake and instantly tell the client that he made a mistake while cutting. A great barber will make the same mistake and stay calm, do whatever necessary to fix it as though it never happened.
There will be times where you may be confused on how to approach a challenging haircut. Respectfully enlist the help of a veteran barber who can give insight on how to approach the situation.
Persuasion skills: It is not about making a sales pitch, but rather about not letting potential clients slip away. You must create a compelling message that your service is worth purchasing or waiting for. You will have to have confidence in yourself, your service, your price for others to have confidence in you.
Tenacity: Put forth extra effort, do not cheat yourself or the customer by giving lazy service.
Closing ability: End the cut with confirmed satisfaction. Show that you care about getting it right, and that you are willing to keep going until you get it right. Even let your client determine what “right” is.
Willingness to learn: Those who do not seek to improve, they will be left behind by others more willing. Learn everything from better haircuts to business marketing. Watch veterans you admire, study and ask questions when appropriate. Watch videos, attend workshops, take photos so you can review and critique your work. Learning resources can be found at www.betheworldsgreatestbarber.com/resources
Invest in your tools: Acquire the best tools and products. Keep replacing tools like old brushes, aprons, and drapes. Keep a good stock of astringent razors, neck strips etc. Products and tools can be found at www.betheworldsgreatestbarber.com/productsandtools
Be confident: Have a firm and energetic handshake, the more excited you are to see people the more welcome, important, and comfortable they will feel.
Personal appearance: Barbers should present themselves as ready to work. Their apparel should stand out from clients in the shop. Wear clean and pressed clothes, maintain good personal grooming, have short and clean nails.
Language: Appropriate and clean language should be used in the shop. Some clients will use foul language without realizing the inappropriateness. Respectfully let them know to filter the language.
Ban sensitive conversations: Religion and politics are both high sensitive subjects. They can cause heavy influence on emotions and thus should be kept out of the shop.
Note: that barbershop arguments or debates can be very funny, informational, silly, offensive, and redundant. Know that most people feel that their stance or belief is the soundest idea in the room. Trying to change someone’s mind by arguing their point and exposing hole in their arguments only makes them want to take a stronger stance and create a tense atmosphere.
Avoid distractions: They only slow you down. People walking by the window, television shows, conversations with other barbers, phone calls, emails etc. can all be distractions that slow down your cutting business. Always keep your hands moving.
Cleanliness: Wash your hands after every cut and sanitize your equipment.