Shifting the ‘shiftless’

Seeing as though I’ve only been in this biz twenty-three years and in a hiring position for half of that time; it’s safe to say my opinion has merit.
In my opinion, the business of beauty school education and state board testing…. Is flawed. Is it the responsibility of the salon that hires the stylist to educate freshly licensed hairstylist? Or is it the job of the cosmetology school?. It is brought to my attention that schools are willing to accept whatever falls through their admissions office in order to gain that highly coveted federal funding. As long as the new recruit is of qualifying age, has a g.e.d or high school diploma…..and a pulse, there in! Apparently, the question’s why do you want to be a hairstylist? and what are you goals? Never come up. Incidentally, these are very important questions that ultimately reveal a lot about the potential student and future stylist. For instance, If your applicant tells you that it was either beauty school or the military or they were more concerned about the amount of the refund check than the class curriculum……beware!!!. What you have is the makings of a deadbeat student that misses more classes than attends and is either disruptive or a non-contributor in class and possibly the industry– if they make it past state board.
Even if this person passed his or her state board examination, armed with just enough knowledge to pass the exam and only ten months of behind-the-chair knowledge, would you hire them to work in your salon? If so, what salon position is a newly licensed stylist qualified to fill? An assistant, junior stylist, shampoo girl, hostess, receptionist?
Although, many of these newbies have adopted and/or co-opted the look of a seasoned stylist….a plethora of tattoo’s crawling down their sleeve, piercings in unusual but highly visible places, mod or gothic haircuts and the color by numbers make up to match, and so on and so forth! I had no idea this is all you needed to transform into a highly sought after hairstylist. Oh yes, and let’s not forget the ubiquitous Instagram account full of bootlegged photo-shoot- like pics of family members whose hair they have fried and dyed over and over.
But beware salon owners, these stylists can talk the talk, name drop, look the part and swear they’re the next best thing since Ted Gibson but wouldn’t know elevation from the Easter Bunny or find their guideline in a haircut with two hands and a flashlight.
These posers are among the many individuals I have had the non-pleasure of interviewing over the last ten years.
Due to the horrifically low bar set by the governing board of cosmetology, and beauty schools that are more style than substance. Many schools are focused only on head count and paying the bills; they fail to uphold the integrity and professionalism of this great and lucrative industry.
The irony is they will do just well enough to pass state board and fall head first into your HR department itching to get their hands on your customers; the bread and butter of your business, and you will have to spend valuable time and lose countless dollars weeding them out.

But maybe not…

out of my frustration as a hiring manager for the last ten plus years, I decided to take matters into my own hands and establish a company to bridge that gap between the freshly minted cosmetologist and the salon ready professional.
Essentially, my company will conduct the weeding and seeding, while you focus on what’s most important, your clients!!!

Salonography is a brand that will celebrate, educate and inspire beauty industry professionals across many platforms including hands on training, workshops and staff development.
Salon staffing solutions, a subsidiary, is designed to facilitate SCOR: strategic, collaborative. outsourcing relationships with salons and stylist needing realtime solutions to realtime challenges.
These challenges can range from salons in crisis (understaffed, untrained, low morale, underperforming stylist, high turnover rates, loss prevention, and personnel issues). Salon staffing solutions works with salons and salon individuals to not only get them back on track but exceeding all expectations.

Contact us for an in-salon consultation


2 thoughts on “Shifting the ‘shiftless’

  1. When I was in school it was absolutely pathetic how many folks could not even grasp the concept of the color wheel, let alone contibuting pigment, pH balance, and occationally how to read.


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