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Prevent and resolve conflicts for smoother operations
October 6, 2010 | By Bruce Hourigan | 11 Comments
Put two or more people in a room and, sooner or later, they’re going to disagree. The more people and personalities you add to the mix, the greater the opportunity for conflict.
Salon/spa owners and managers can either fuel the flames of conflict, or help keep the peace, which in turn keeps the business operating more smoothly and with less stress for all parties.
Try these tips to help keep conflicts at a minimum, and resolve disagreements quickly when they do arise.
- Share information. One of the biggest sources of conflict is people simply do not receive proper direction and therefore, make assumptions. When their assumptions do not coincide with yours, wham! Conflict occurs. Unless you work at the “Psychic Hotline,” make sure you communicate frequently and consistently.
- Put it in writing. Job requirements and expectations, such as dress code and time off, should be in an employee manual. This will eliminate many a discussion about whether or not so-and-so is due for a break or is defying the rules. Have a detailed employee manual, give each staff member a copy and enforce it without fail.
- Don’t create firestorms. While it’s fine to comment on behaviors that are out-of-line with the standards you’ve set for your business, don’t let your emotions get in the way. Hold your temper and handle issues calmly and objectively. Once you’ve lost your temper, you’ve lost control of the situation. Your staff (even those not involved in the situation) will remember your actions long after the initial conflict is forgotten.
- Nip squabbles in the bud. Resolve conflicts among staff members as they arise. Petty bickering often escalates to all-out war. Keep your finger on the pulse of your staff. Many conflicts become “he said, she said” affairs. It’s not about taking sides. It is important that these conflicts don’t start to affect the customers and other employees.
- Keep a positive atmosphere. The best way to deal with conflict is to keep it from occurring in the first place. When team members are happy and working toward shared goals, conflicts are far less likely to arise. That attitude starts at the top. Work on attaining and maintaining an upbeat attitude (yes, even on “bad” days), and making your salon or spa an enjoyable place to work.
When you’re constantly putting out small fires, you’re left with less time to do the important work of running your business. And ongoing conflict keeps your employees from focusing on reaching their highest potential. Handling conflict promptly and trying to avoid it in the first place will keep your salon or spa a happy place for clients and employees alike.
Categories: Business Builders