The definition of leadership is ‘the art of motivating a group of people to work together toward achieving a common goal’. In a salon business setting, this means directing staff and colleagues with a strategy that fits the needs of the company.
When faced with problems in the workplace, true leaders look inward and identify their own abilities and shortcomings; there is always room for improvement. In order to empower and inspire your salon employees, you will naturally learn that this starts by accepting that self-accountability is the foundation of becoming a great boss.
In any business, leadership skills are essential to facilitating strong teams capable of accomplishing tasks efficiently. Regardless of your natural talents, developing such abilities is crucial for managing a workforce and aspiring to run a financially successful company.
Building strong leadership qualities will also allow you to grow as a person. The process is empowering as a way to hone your talents and inspire others. You will become more aware of your strengths and weaknesses, leading to a very high level of self-awareness, thus making you very effective in daily team communications.
WHAT’S YOUR STYLE?
Understanding your leadership style helps to create managerial skills that are aligned with your own nature and personality. How would you describe your leadership approach? Is it democratic, visionary, coaching, task-oriented,
or commanding? Knowing where you fall in these categories will give you a clearer picture of how you can improve your managerial
Individual leadership styles come with natural strengths and weaknesses. Instead of accepting these traits as fixed, adopt a growth mindset and strive to improve continuously. Once you have considered your approach to leadership, are there any areas you could improve? Here are some factors to think about:
- Are you empathetic to others’ feelings and needs, or are you purely self-focused? Putting others first is essential to building rapport and inspiring your team to follow you.
- Do you need to improve your communication skills? To create and manage an effective team, you must establish expectations and boundaries, outline clear direction and goals, and keep your staff informed.
- Can you make tough decisions? Ultimately, you need to be confident in your ability to make difficult choices and always put the needs of the company first.
- Do you micromanage? One of the most common problems salon owners face is being unable to delegate routine daily tasks; you need to let go of this.
- Can you give constructive feedback? For team leaders, it is very tempting to limit feedback to the positive. However, if you want your business to succeed, you cannot ignore problems within your team, and you must learn to give negative feedback most positively as you can.
MY TOP TIPS TO IMPROVE YOUR LEADERSHIP SKILLS...
Create a plan
Now that you know what your leadership strengths and weaknesses are, you can take action by creating a game plan tailored to your personal style.
For example, if you recognise a lack of
self-confidence as a weakness, take steps to boost it. If communication is not your strong point, start learning effective communication techniques. With practice, your leadership skills will improve, resulting in salon success.
By demonstrating genuine enthusiasm and passion for the end result, your team will keep working towards achieving their goals too. Employees respond well to those who are eager to help them grow and learn. Be passionate about your business, including your efforts to develop leadership skills, and you will have an inspired team.
Be a great example
Employees will always respect managers who ‘walk the talk’. Your job is to motivate others to take the best action to achieve salon goals. Among the hallmarks of transformational leaders is their ability to be a role model. Therefore, show those around you exactly what you want to
see them do and how you want them to behave.
Embrace your strengths
While understanding your weaknesses will help you know where you can improve, knowing your natural gifts and abilities will allow you to put them to great use immediately. By doing so, you can then continue to build on your strengths.
Set and achieve goals
As you continue to hone your leadership skills, don’t forget to clarify your goals and chart your route to get there. Making the right plan and establishing benchmarks will give you a roadmap and a methodology to guide your salon business for the upcoming months, years, etc.
Learn to accept your failures
Effective leadership does not mean never making mistakes - in fact, it is often the complete opposite. Once you realise you have made an error, acknowledge it and put plans in place to correct it. Furthermore, you
should always be open and honest about your failures, as well as discuss them with the rest of the team. Be sure to learn from them and ask yourself “how can I avoid repeating this mistake in the future?”
You can send a powerful message to your employees by learning from failures. Even when you make mistakes, they will understand that you are still capable of leading well. Learn how to recognise your successes and failures as you work on improving your leadership skills.
Inspire those around you
A team member who does not feel that you believe in them will not perform well, and poor morale could spread throughout the company as a result. Rather than doubting your team, believe in them and their capabilities. The key to sustained growth is to build your leadership skills in the salon business by generating and focusing positive energy.
To develop leadership skills, remember why you are investing time and energy into your chosen goals. What is driving you? When you know why you want to become a better leader, you can become a more confident, knowledgeable, and empowered manager for your team, while strengthening the efforts you put into your own personal goals.
Those around you will see the hard work and passion you bring to the business each day, encouraging them to be the best they can be at their salon roles.