spa and salon culture - happy employees high fiving

12 Leadership Tips for a Winning Spa and Salon Culture

May 16, 2023

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Your ideal employee rolls up early, coffee in hand, high fiving their co-workers, and ready to rock their job each and every day. Why? Because your ideal employee feels respected, valued, included, and appreciated. Because you promote a positive spa and salon culture that prioritizes their well-being and encourages a healthy team mentality.

Ok, maybe you’re not there yet and you recognize that you’ve got some room to grow and some
changes to make (that’s totally ok though–no one’s perfect). Maybe you’re a new salon or spa owner and you want to get your business and team started on the right foot. Either way, how can you more actively promote a healthy workplace, free of toxicity, and reduce turnover and burnout rates?

From what creates a winning spa and salon culture to why it’s so essential to the success of your business, our 12 actionable tips outlined below will help you cultivate a more positive workplace that makes your employees engaged and WANT to stick around.


What Exactly Is Spa & Salon Culture?

Your workplace culture is made up of the values, behaviors, and priorities you promote throughout every aspect of your business. It’s about what you expect of yourself and your employees, how your employees feel working there, and how that translates to your guests’ experience. It’s also about how you invest in your staff and continuously foster a supportive environment.


Why Is Spa & Salon Culture So Important?

Exceptional workplaces that prioritize a positive internal culture report that more than 66% of their employees are engaged at work. Your spa and salon culture is what sets your business apart. Not only does a positive environment attract (and keep!) the right employees, it also attracts (and keeps!) the right clients. It makes your beauty business something people want to be a part of, something that makes them feel good. And let’s be honest, isn’t that why you started your business in the first place?


spa and salon culture

12 Ways to Create a Positive Spa & Salon Culture:


1. Define Your Values

  • Why did you become a salon and spa owner or manager in the first place?
  • What do you believe makes a successful business and work environment?
  • What values do you try to live by and uphold in your personal life?
  • What are ways you can behave to align with your business values?
  • How do you envision your team aligning with your values?


2. Share Your Values

Communicating your values ensures you and your team are headed in the right direction. It lets workers know how to communicate and treat one another. Staff will feel more connected to you and the overall purpose of your business versus just accepting a paycheck. Write down your vision and post it in a team common space like a break room or shared office or send a company bulletin–anything that helps keep your values top of mind.


3. Lead by Example

Leading a team of high performers with good attitudes starts with YOU. Make sure you’re treating your staff the way you want to be treated. Show up and hold yourself accountable. Be kind to yourself and follow through on your value system every chance you get. Give yourself down time to recharge so you can come back refreshed and present. As the saying goes, a true leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way. Make sure your spa and salon culture reflects that.


4. Foster a Supportive and Inclusive Workplace

Employees can’t do their best if they don’t feel safe, respected, and valued. Empower your employees to excel on their own instead of micromanaging or nagging. Create an open environment where everyone feels included and free to share. Seek out credible resources on how to foster a more inclusive environment for all people, whether employees or guests.

Pro Tip: Recent research shows that 92.6% of employees have experienced mental health symptoms that have impacted their work. Be sure to offer mental health resources and how to access them.


spa and salon culture - hiring guide


5. Empower Your Staff’s Growth

How can you support, develop, and mentor each of your employees on a personal level? Give them the right tools to grow and reach success. Provide growth opportunities within your salon and spa like apprenticeship programs, mentorships, continuing education, or certifications. Let employees know that their goals are your goals too and that you’re sincerely invested in supporting them. If you only focus on flaws and mistakes, you’ll likely create a negative spa and salon culture that isn’t very motivating.

Pro Tip: Set employees up with metric-trackers like Meevo’s Smart Centers and watch their confidence skyrocket every time they crush those goals!


6. Stay Flexible

Spa and salon culture is also about work-life balance. Allow time off for personal or family reasons, volunteering, travel, self-care, etc. Try to be more flexible when it comes to scheduling requests. Yes, you need to make sure you’re covered for appointments and that your team respects pre-defined schedules, but you also want to show staff that you care about their well-being.


7. Cultivate an Attitude of Gratitude

Find ways to share your gratitude for employees on a regular basis. It could be a team brunch, an “employee of the month” reward, a meaningful handwritten card, a coffee gift card, or a pretty bouquet of flowers for their work area. Pure thoughtfulness goes a long way, and you don’t have to spend a fortune to demonstrate that.


8. Schedule Regular One-on-One Meetings

You likely already hold regular team meetings (way to go!), but also block out time for meetings with each employee individually. Take them out for coffee and use it as an opportunity for feedback (from you and from them) and to reinforce your spa and salon culture values.

Pro Tip: Add one-on-one meetings into your appointment book so it’s clear that time is unavailable and avoid double-booking.


9. Invest in Training

Did you know that learning opportunities make 74% of employees more productive? They expand employees’ skill sets, challenge them in a healthy way, and can be a major confidence boost. Hold regular training on new techniques, equipment, or technology like chairside checkout. Set aside time weekly to discuss something new with your team to boost morale and bond – this could be a quick 20-minute huddle or a longer after-hours ordeal with snacks and beverages to entice the team.

Pro Tip: Meevo’s built-in assistant gives employees guided tours of features so they can save time and get it right the first time.


spa and salon culture - a group of happy employees smiling


10. Organize Team Activities

Speaking of bonding, schedule team activities or events every few months to develop relationships between team members. Go out for dinner, try a yoga class, or volunteer together for a local nonprofit. Team building activities lift spirits, improve communication, and bring people closer together.


11. Expect the Best

Having a positive outlook and seeing the good in people goes a long way in showing you trust them and that you’re also their cheerleader. Operate your salon and spa with the idea that everyone is trying their best. It doesn’t mean that there isn’t room for improvement or corrective action when needed, it means you approach your staff with empathy and understanding first and foremost. Embodying a glass half full attitude will do wonders for your spa and salon culture.


12. Celebrate Successes

Recognizing team and individual success is part of the fun of owning and running a business. Celebrate exciting milestones, big and small goals that were reached, a rave customer review, or just a really great day. Congratulate your team on their hard work, make a party of it, and keep the good vibes going!

Pro Tip: Visualize your success with robust goal tracking dashboards for your business as a whole and for individual employees.


A Healthy Spa and Salon Culture Is All About Consistency


Creating a positive spa and salon culture isn’t a “set it and forget it” kind of thing. It will require you to leverage and implement these ideas and tips CONSISTENTLY. Try not to dwell too long on mistakes or mishaps along the way. Learn the lesson you’re presented with and move forward–which sets a great example for your employees. Don’t forget to give yourself a high five too–if you’re reading this now, it means you’re invested in your business’s and your team’s success, so way to go!


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