What I Wish I Had Known When I Started .. Part 1

Isn’t it interesting how our failures become our greatest teachers? My biggest failures were the most shameful, isolating and downright revolting experiences of my life. They were also my biggest lessons. I chose to LEARN from them. Every challenge that ever presented I chose to seek a lesson from.

I, like a lot of you, went into business for myself, knowing I was pretty darn good at most beauty treatments – i’ll just hire the staff for the treatments I’m no good at / don’t like, and honestly, I just wanted to work for myself. Wasn’t it meant to be all roses and happiness owning a business?!

I’ve decided to swallow my pride and share some of them with you.

If there is one thing I have truly learned from my coaching clients, industry colleagues, Salon Mavens Facebook group members and the messages I receive daily (and have received over the last 10 years)

… I was not actually alone.

Yet I didn’t know this in the early days. Social media wasn’t big when I first started out. I didn’t tell a lot of people what I was going through. I thought it meant something was wrong with ME that this shit was happening.  I was ashamed. I was failing BADLY and FAST! (didn’t THAT bring up childhood issues !!).

So many others have gone through so many of the same issues and failings I experienced.

Staff issues; pouring your hard earned cash and soul into training them, only for them to rip your heart out when they leave with half your clientele and some of your product, or costing you 1000’s in legal fees thinking they could sue the pants of you and be set for life…(obviously watching too many U.S drama shows) big marketing promises with expenses that could feed a 3rd world village, which in turn brought NOTHING in

Theft, burglary, weird-ass clients requiring police attendance (twice this happened, and one had assaulted me badly).

 

SO Here it is: My first salon, my most shameful, horrific failure experience, (which I NEVER talk about really), was in a quaint old 2 storey premises. The lady who sold it to us also sold us our home. So I trusted her. She didn’t know the truth of it either though.

Long story short, I bought a little bit of a salon, A LOT of brothel

The owner and a side kick were turning tricks upstairs “massaging” whilst the other staff did the beauty treatments downstairs. Not only did she take her “massage clientele” and half the other salon clients with her within the first month, I was left with a massive debt on the mortgage, no money coming in (as I wasn’t well versed in the, erm, massage world)  and no way to pay the bills. We bought a second salon (hey it seemed like the right move at the time).

Within 10 months we had lost our house. Our marriage was in tatters. We couldn’t sue her as we didn’t have $60k to start the process.

Stay tuned for my next post  to see how I managed this disaster and was able to  easily learn and implant systems and marketing projects that turned my salon’s average weekly income to $17,000 a week (yup, Im super proud of those failures becoming my biggest teachers for my best successes!).

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