5 ways to boost staff morale

Poor morale undermines the commitment of employees, hurts the products and service they offer, and can alienate clients. It arises because of many reasons, such as a personality clash, poor management, lack of job satisfaction, financial insecurity or absence of leadership – all of which may result in a high stress environment. This is the last thing you want your clients to experience.

Poor morale can be all encompassing and, after a while, it can be difficult to know how to find its source and reverse it. What may start just as individual apathy can deteriorate into a generalised infectious problem that spreads throughout the entire salon. Salary, holidays and perks are important to your team, but never forget the importance of job satisfaction.

The good news is, poor morale is reversible. However, you need to deal with the cause not just the symptoms to keep your top therapists as well as attract the right people to your business

1. Figure out the source of the problem

If your salon is suffering from poor morale and you’re unsure why, start by asking your therapists, assessing their feelings and opinions. Try to understand the resources people need to make both their work and environment more satisfying. 

It’s also important to identify people’s expectations, their ways and benefits, how the internal communication system is working and whether your management style is effective. It might be worth exploring areas such as reward and recognition and finding tangible ways to contribute to the process of change.

2. Utilise your managers 

Managers can do so much to improve morale – by getting to know the team reporting to you, making themselves available when therapists need to talk or share a problem, valuing staff for their particular skills, passions and knowledge, and most importantly, helping the team develop their potential.

3. Get to know your team better

Always greet therapists by their first name and show that you know and value their contributions to the company. Create an open and honest work environment and give feedback. Listen with real empathy to the concerns of your employees, as well as being open to new ideas and suggestions for problem solving. 

4. Set open and realistic goals 

Make your expectations and goals for the company clear and communicate them directly and regularly. Good employees want to please you but to do that they need to know what it is they need to do to make that happen.

Provide opportunities to grow and learn, letting your therapists know there’s room for advancement in your salon. Tap into their passion and allow them to focus their time and energy on exciting projects they can enjoy, with guidance on career progression. 

5. Recognise and reward good work

Monetary bonuses are always nice but recognition of a job well done goes a long way to creating good will and loyalty. Recognition needs to be specific and feedback and praise must be sincere.

Your staff are the salon’s most valuable resource. By creating an environment of open, constructive feedback, they will feel inclined to co-operate with you as you drive your business forward.

Liz McKeon is a salon coach and business turnaround expert. She will be speaking on the Business Skills programme at Professional Beauty London on the topic: "Get ready to finish the year strong and successful". Book your ticket to the show, and reserve your place for any of our seminar sessions here