Recently, in Atlanta, I met with Frank Gambuzza at a Strictly Business education event he helped lead with Scott Missad. Look for Frank and Scott to be featured in the November issue of SALON TODAY, as we launch a new “Profitability Project” initiative to help all salons honestly evaluate and strengthen their businesses. THESE DAYS, I’M SPENDING A LOT OF TIME THINKING ABOUT EDUCATION. MUCH OF IT HAS TO DO WITH WHAT’S ON THE NEWS. Politicians are talking about “reeducating” American workers, educating voters about economic policy, or educating people on the other side of the world about running a democracy.
Education is never far from my mind, or from the collective minds of the salon industry.
Pretty much any day of the year there is a stylist educational event occurring somewhere. That’s because the salon industry understands—and has always understood—the value of education. We understand that education keeps us current, sets us apart, and ultimately makes us successful. And while some people’s interest in education is related to licensing requirements and CEU credits, most stylists’ interest in education is driven by a personal challenge to be the best they can be.
I AM, HOWEVER, NOTICING A SHIFT IN THE KIND OF EDUCATION BEAUTY PROFESSIONALS ARE PURSUING. There is a defi nite uptick of interest in “the fundamentals.” Learning how to expand a client base, price services, build more business with existing clients and market a salon or individual “brand” are all hot topics. Business education is suddenly in style.
This isn’t suggesting there is any less interest in the creative cut, color, style side. Step-by-step service education is still the most popular and essential education for licensed professionals, which is why we invest in and cover it heavily in MODERN. Also, the growth of online education platforms, including modernsalonlearning. com, shows just how strong that demand continues to be. It is worth noting that, overall, the trend in beauty education is for it to be broader and more pervasive than ever. Perhaps it’s a refl ection of a challenging market—the economy has taught beauty professionals they have to make money to support their “inner artists,” and, to do so, they have to focus on business best practices.
Perhaps all the salon exposure on TV—a lot of it highlighting our worst practices—has given salons a wakeup call. Perhaps it’s the growing social network that’s connected us more closely to our peers. (See our 26,000- plus “professional” friends on facebook.com/modernsalon.)