Archive for October, 2010

Management Must Manage!

Saturday, October 30th, 2010

At some point in your career as a stylist, you will probably ask yourself whether you are cut out to be a salon manager. And would becoming a manager fit your skills and personality.  Can I manage people, schedules, and procedures?  Am I ready to take total responsibility a salon’s success and profits?

With 739,042 salon managers in the United States, how do you set yourself apart and become the best manager in your community?  If you want to be a fabulous manager, there is one piece of the puzzle that you must get right, according to Harold Beneen, former CEO at ITT.

It is a very simple credo, probably the closest thing to the secret of success in business, in professional life, in almost everything you undertake.  The strange thing is that in one form or another everyone knows it, and somehow they forget it all the time.  Or they think it too simple to be real: management must manage.

Defining our terms, management or “Manage” means to get something done, to accomplish something that you or the team, set out to do which presumably is worthy of your effort.  “Must” means must.  That is the active word in the credo:  “must.”

In the business world, everyone is always working at legitimate cross-purposes, governed by self-interest.  Customers plead for lower prices; suppliers demand higher prices; owners want more and more earnings.  The competition is trying to market a better service at a lower cost.  Your job as a manager is to manage all of that, and more, and to finish the year with results that satisfy those cross-purposes as well as the goals you set for yourself and your salon.

In business there always will be problems and your job as salon manager is to solve them.  If you try twenty-two ways to solve one problem and still fail, then you must try the twenty-third way.  But your attitude should be:  “I’m going to stay here all night if I have to, but I’m going to solve that problem.”

Though I’ve done it often and recommend it at times to others, spending all night at work is not the essential point; solving the problem is.  Results are important in management.  If you can solve your problem with two winks and the wave of a hand, well and good.  You work through the night only because it takes you that long to find an answer that will solve the problem and satisfy you.  The results will show up on your P&L sheet at the end of the year.

“Management must manage” means that you must get results!

The primary difference between an entrepreneur and a business manager, generally speaking, is one of attitude.  The entrepreneur, especially when starting out, knows that she is operating on the threshold of success or failure.  A single mistake can ruin her.  She can’t afford that single mistake.  She has to reach a certain market, make a stipulated amount of sales, and earn enough money to carry her forward.  While others leave the office at five o’clock, she stays behind and works to solve those problems that beset her business.  She must manage.  She takes her problems home with her.  She lives her business twenty-four hours a day.

The professional business manager all too often loses that sense of commitment, if she had it in the first place.  Too many times, she manages by the book.  She relies upon the knowledge that she is working for a business large enough to absorb a number of mistakes. The professional manager does not set out to make mistakes or to succumb to a bad turn in the market place.  She wants to succeed.  Subconsciously she allows herself what she considers a reasonable margin of error.  But that margin usually is far wider than that of the entrepreneur running his own business.  And that margin of error is accepted!

So if you want to distinguish yourself as a manager, think differently than almost every manager in every industry.  Manage like an owner.  Manage like an entrepreneur.  Manage and act like it is your money, your investment, and your business.  Put the “must” back into management.

Logan is co-founder of Donna Bella Milan hair extensions and author of the Donna Bella blog.

Does Paris Wear Donna Bella?

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010


October 27, 2010


I read an article that revealed that Paris Hilton was being sued for $35 million by Dream Catchers, the hair extension company that she supposedly endorses.  The article stated that she violated her contract by appearing in magazines and on television wearing hair extensions from a competing company.

My salon partner suggested that Paris wears Donna Bella Milan hair extensions and that the other company is you.  Could that be true?

Angie Z – Laguna, California


You are correct about Paris being in hot water but a high temp lifestyle is nothing new to the international socialite.

According to a lawsuit filed in Los Angeles, Hairtech International who owns the clip-in extension brand Dream Catchers, gave Hilton $3.5 million to promote the extensions but claims that the reality starlet didn’t live up to her end of the bargain.

Donna Bella Milan extensions are sold to professional stylists throughout the world of which some are said to have “A” list clients.  But we offer no financial endorsements and everyone receives the same low price.

This is what we know.  Our best notoriety comes from satisfied customers of every walk of life, famous or not.  DB extensions are designed and priced for anyone, whether you are looking to for a little extra volume and length or a trend-setting red carpet makeover.

So unfortunately, Donna Bella cannot confirm or deny that Paris Hilton or any another celeb uses our extensions.  We will ask, if we ever bump into her.

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Men Care About Your Hair

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

When the divorce decree was finalized almost four years ago, I wanted to just soak in the quite, safe environment that I found myself in.  Nothing was further from my mind than dating, especially because I had two great children to keep me fulfilled.  About a year and a half ago a change came over me.  I started noticing that I missed being around men and felt that I was ready to get back in the game.  I had no clue how to start.

As I looked for opportunities to mix it up a little, I found that I was completely out of my league.  All around me were seasoned competitors who had been honing their skills while I went to the zoo with my kids and spent Saturday mornings doing laundry.  I determined very quickly, that I was an amateur who had been thrown into the ring with a whale-of-a-lot of talented, fast thinking professionals.  And I needed some serious coaching.

Fortunately, I had a close friend named Zandra who sat me down and asked me some very valuable questions.

Zandra:  What are you looking for this time around?

Me:  A companion.

Zandra:  Are you flirting or do you really want a relationship?

Me:  The real deal.

Zandra:  How would your children feel if you found someone special?

Me:  They would be elated!

Zandra:  Are you prepared to invest in the process?

Invest what?

That last question really got to me.  I was thinking that you put on some jeans and a happy smile and when given a chance, act interested in what men say, and before you know it, someone shows an equal interest in you.  Zandra started to laugh when I explained my strategy.  Girl, she said, “You are in t-r-o-u-b-l-e.”  So apparently, dating doesn’t work that way any more.  “What are men interested in?” I asked.  “If jeans won’t do it any more, how do I get someone’s attention?”

“I’ll give you some choices and you guess what might be a super-magnet for genuine, lifetime companions”, explained Zandra.  “But first you have to know one important thing.  In Stage 1 of dating, a man’s heart is connected directly to his eyes.  You need a personal prop, that says something special about you, even before he hears your voice, gets your email, or tastes your cooking.  It’s all about the eyes!”

“Okay, give me the list.”  I looked over a list of ten items and couldn’t find one thing that made any sense.  The prop-list included Shoes, Glasses, Car, Sweaters, Books, Hair, Purses, Nails, Make-up, and Hats.  “You mean to tell me that in this list there is a magic bullet, a heart-stopper.”  “There is!” exclaimed Zandra.  “I guarantee it.”

I guessed five different things that were completely off based before I came to the word “hair”.  “HAIR, its hair!”  “Men don’t care about hair”, I said.  “You would be surprised”, countered Zandra.  “It is the magic potion.”

“Hair tells your life story”, she said.  “It suggests how comfortable you are with yourself and expresses the warmth of your heart.  Long hair shows patience and a willingness to build a long-term relationship.  Men want to come home to a woman who treats her flowing hair in the same flexible way that a man wants to be treated.  All in all, hair is a much better predictor of happiness than any fortuneteller’s crystal ball.”

I had a problem – a very big problem.  My hair hadn’t been cared for, the way it should have been, for four years.  It wasn’t long with patience nor flowing with flexibility.  It was course, chopped, dull, and ugly.  I was discouraged and Zandra knew it.  “You’re coming with me”, she said.  “I have the answer to your transformation.”

The next Saturday, Zandra had arranged for a place for the children and had me speeding toward her hair stylist by 9:30 a.m.  “What’s the plan?”  “You’ll see when we get there.”  Upon reaching the salon, I was greeted by a stylist, who made me feel like we were old friends.  Within minutes, I had complete confidence in whatever she might do.  “What are we going to do this time?” the stylist asked Zandra.  “We are giving her the heart-stopper special”, beamed my friend.

I’ll have to tell you, I’ve never had so much fun, not knowing what was going to happen.  One thing led to another and before you knew it, I was being reinvented with long and flowing hair extensions.  It was one of the most special days of my life.

Now, you may want to know the rest of the story.  Four days after the makeover, while at work, I got the attention of one of my co-workers named Jim, who had always been interesting but never interested, if you know what I mean.  He took a look at me and told me later that he felt a difference in me that he had never felt before and had no idea why I had made such an amazing impression on him, in one day, in one moment.

Zandra and I have never told Jim the complete story, mainly because it’s a girl thing.  But what I want you to know is that my children and I have fallen in love with a man who has brighten our lives.  Tomorrow, we will have been married one full year and to get ready for the event and keep the magic going, I have an appointment to fill and replenish my Donna Bella hair extensions.

My Boss Will Have A Cow!

Tuesday, October 26th, 2010


October 26, 2010


A second ago, I read your interesting and well advised post titled “I Want To Open My Own Shop” and had to send this comment with a question.  I have always wanted to own my own salon and be independent.  For the past 9 years, I have worked to build someone else’s salon business into a thriving success.  Finally, I have the courage and finances to go out on my own.  Nine years is a long time and I wish that I would have made the move sooner.

My boss has been great over the years and has given me managerial responsibilities with bonuses.  But she is going to have a cow, when I tell her next week, especially because two of her best stylists want to go with me.  I’m nervous!  But excited at the same time.  Any suggestions?

Shantay – Alabama


After nine years of hard work, you deserve to have your dreams come true.

You have nothing to apologize for.  Your boss is better off today because she hired you, trained you, and mentored you.  You can leave with you head high.

It is very easy to leave a salon and find fault with the way that business was run, the owner’s personality, and even your fellow workers.  Don’t get caught on that slippery slope by talking trash about your previous workplace.  When asked by customers why you left, be positive when describing your dream, and don’t bring up negative aspects about your salon or owner.

If your associates leave as well, that is their decision.  Be sure to make it clear to them, (and perhaps your current salon owner) that it was not your intent to steal them away.  Apparently, they want a change as well and they will have to sort that out with the owner.

Good luck.  That is what’s great about living in Canada and the U.S.

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I Want To Open My Own Shop

Tuesday, October 26th, 2010


October 25, 2010


I will be graduating from beauty school soon and feel fortunate because someone has offered me a job in their salon.  My emphasis in school is hair design – specializing in hair extensions.  By the way, my school uses Donna Bella “practice” hair extensions.

I want to open my own shop but didn’t really get a lot of training about owning and running a business.  Do you think that I could jump in and start a business right away?

Sheffield A – Albany, New York


You have great energy and a sense of adventure.  Sure, it can be done, but there are associated risks.  First of all, it takes a lot of money to set up a professional looking salon.  But let’s say that you have the money.  Is it still a good idea?

The key to any business is customers!  Where are you going to get your clientele?  Most stylists build a base of satisfied clients before venturing out on their own.  And if you have served them well, loyal customers will follow you, wherever you go.

As soon as you open your own salon, you put on many different business hats.  You are the marketing department, accountant, custodian, hairdresser, buyer, and employer along with many other responsibilities.  Some stylists don’t want those job titles.

We suggest that you work in salon for the time-being honing your skills as an extension specialist and building a customer base.  Observe the responsibilities of the shop owner and learn as much as you can about managing a salon.

This is important!  If you decide to work in a salon, then give your employer your best effort and help the business succeed.  Then, if you leave to open a salon, you have honestly helped them as much as they have helped you.

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Nice Extensions Turn Nasty

Tuesday, October 26th, 2010


October 23, 2010


My friend got inexpensive hair extensions about a month ago and they are a mess.  She is going to have them taken out.  They started out looking shinny and soft.  Now they are dull and tangled.  I want to get extensions but not if the same thing happens to me.  I know extensions can look great and last a long time, how can I be sure?

Kerri Ann B – Fort Worth, Texas


Quality hair extensions are made to last and look natural between 3-6 months, depending upon the care given.  Make sure that you start with top-of-the-line Remy hair.

Some companies, even with expensive extensions, disguise non-remy hair by adding silicone to the hair in the final production process.  Silicone gives extensions a temporary silky look and feel.  Unfortunately, after a few shampoos, the silicone eventually washes off leaving dry unmanageable extensions.

You will be completely satisfied with your extensions by purchasing Remy quality human hair, where the cuticle remains intact and unstripped. Verify with your stylist that your are getting authentic Remy hair.

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Extensions Better Than My Own Hair

Friday, October 22nd, 2010


October 22, 2010


My hair extensions actually feel better than the quality of my own hair.  Is there a nutritional supplement that I can take to improve the health of my hair and give it the luster and softness of my extensions?

Allison T – Beaverton, Oregon


There are many foods and supplements that will improve your hair quality from the inside-out.  Eat a balanced diet with ample amounts of protein and over time you will start to notice a difference.

One exotic juice from the Himalayan Mountain region of India, Pakistan, and China comes from a wild fruit known as Seabuckthorn.  It is now bottled and sold by various companies in the U.S.  This small orange berry with a pungent taste is a nutritional superstar.

Seabuckthorn contains Vitamin E, Ascorbic acid, fatty acids, protein (especially albumins and globulins) that play an important role in healing and rejuvenation. In addition, Seabuckthorn is a great source for antioxidants to strengthen the immune system.  There are few plant sources on earth with Omega 3 oils but Seabuckthorn happens to be one of them.

Within one month of drinking small amounts of this highly concentrated juice, your hair (and nails) should spring back to life.

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Dirty Hair Before Extensions?

Thursday, October 21st, 2010


October 21, 2010


As a stylist I am often asked by a client, whether they should wash their hair at home or wait until they arrive at the shop.  If I am putting extensions into someone’s hair does it matter where or when they shampoo their hair?

Grace R – Bardwell, Massachusetts


There are three issues.  Oily hair, cost and results.  You would be surprised how many clients like to wash their hair at home for the simple reason that they are embarrassed to show up at the salon with oily hair.  That is much more of an issue than women wanting to save money by not having you do the work.

Let them know that you want to wash and professionally prepare the hair for extensions.  You are the expert and the customer is looking to you for advice, especially when it comes to hair extensions.

Your hair extension appointment will be more successful if you wash the clients hair prior to placing the hair extensions.  The hair will lay better and make your job easier.  If the customer washes and dries their own, you may have a mess to clean up before you get started on the extensions.

Include the price of a wash in with the hair extension application, as an all-inclusive package.  That way, you prepare the hair properly and the extensions not only look better but the experience also gives your customer a true makeover feeling when they leave the salon.

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Shop Talk – You Say, We Say

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

We collect your comments about Donna Bella extensions from telephone conversations, email, and meeting you at trade shows.  Your feedback has been invaluable in helping us educate stylists and explode the hair extension industry.  Here are a few of the things you say.

You Say: One-stop shopping at Donna Bella has slashed the time that you spend looking for quality extensions and accessories.  Now you can concentrate on your customers and what you were trained to do.

We Say: With a few simple clicks, or a toll-free call, you can order everything you need to dazzle your extension customers.

You Say: We rarely run short of hair colors, lengths, and styles.

We Say: To ensure our quality and ample supply, Donna Bella Milan has collaborated with one of the world’s oldest and most prestigious raw human hair authorities.  To anticipate demand, we are constantly in the marketplace, searching for the finest human hair throughout the Indian subcontinent.

You Say: We are best known for high-quality 100 percent Remy human hair, our innovative application processes, and our ability to anticipate the needs of hair care professionals.

We Say: Donna Bella Milan has years of experience in the human hair industry and we have learned so much from special relationships with hundreds of our dedicated stylists.

You Say: We offer a superior product because of its ability to maintain a smooth texture without using silicone or other low-quality synthetic coatings.

We Say: It is all due to our unique and proprietary processing methods.

You Say: Donna Bella’s no-hassle attachment methods are easy to perfect and you have thanked us for expanding our product range to include Bead, Bond, Tape-In, Clip-In~Clip-Out, and Yaki-weft.

We Say: You are welcome.  There will be more innovative products and application systems to come.

You Say: DB’s Remy extensions can be curled, flat-ironed, washed, conditioned, permed, and even colored.

We Say: Instead of stripping the cuticle and putting the quality of our hair at risk, Donna Bella utilizes state-of-the-art technology to preserve the cuticle and leave it organically intact.

You Say: Our brand is noted for its cost-effective online Education and Accredited Training.

We Say: By combining Donna Bella high-quality hair extensions with the proper training and knowledge, stylists are empowered to create the look that keeps clients coming back again and again.

You Say: You have heard that we are about to launch a new line of Donna Bella Milan professional lash extension products.

We Say: Because you asked for it, we might just do it!  Especially because you say we should.

Most importantly…

You Say: That it is fun and profitable to do business with Donna Bella Milan.

We Say: We feel the same way about doing business with you.

Logan is co-founder of Donna Bella Milan hair extensions and author of the Donna Bella blog.

I Even Tried The Dog’s Brush

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010


October 20, 2010


My hair extensions are fabulous and I like everything about them except one really frustrating thing.  I’ve tried brushing the extensions using a wide-tooth comb and three different brushes that I’ve found around the house.  I’m a little embarrassed to tell you but I even tried the dog’s brush to comb out my hair extensions.  Not one of them worked to my satisfaction.  They catch from time-to-time on my micro beads.  What am I doing wrong?

Naomi S, Oakland, California


That is a pretty funny story.  The first thing you need to do is stop borrowing stuff from your dog.  There is a better solution.

The big problem for hair extension users is the raised areas where either micro beads are pinched or keratin tips are bonded.  Micro beads have a slightly larger surface and play havoc with combs and standard brushes no matter the quality of the brush.  And unless you are careful, bond tips may also catch on a comb.

What you need is a specific hair extension brush with raised bristles that float over and through the micro beads and fushion tips.  They are not expensive so having more than one around the house would be wise.  You may even want to purchase an extra brush for your canine friend.

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