I’m appearing at Salon International 2021 on a Talking Teamwork panel, as part of the new Business Live, sponsored by NHBF seminars – and it’s a subject I never tire talking about! Honestly, I could talk for England on the benefits of teamwork, team management and inspiring your team to reach new heights.
It’s kind of telling that when we had our work summer ball in August I said to the team we should invite ex-members of staff – but then I realised that there really wasn’t many people who had left the business!
I think that’s because I allow my staff to develop with the brand. Once you get to senior barber position you get more money, then the chance to own the barbershop or be a teacher in the academy. I think progression in the work place is key. One thing that always sticks in mind from my first job was the way my boss behaved when he caught me scribbling names for my first barbershop. He said: “just think about cutting hair first.” It’s mad, if he had respected me then I would probably be in business with him now!
I treat all my staff as human beings with individual dreams and ambitions. Whether they’re 16 or 60, I treat them with respect. I’m always pushing people and inspiring them. However that’s not to say that someone who’s worked behind the chair for 10 years doesn’t earn my respect too. I appreciate them just as much as someone who wants to open their own barbershop within a year.
“I COULD TALK FOR ENGLAND ON THE BENEFITS OF TEAMWORK AND INSPIRING YOUR TEAM TO REACH NEW HEIGHTS”
Feeling valued is part of why people stay and thrive in this industry. For example I see a lot of business owners who want to open a second shop, but they’re not prepared because they haven’t nurtured their staff to support them. They’re trying to do it all alone. You’ve got to let go of the reins and be able to trust your team. Having business partners in the shop is indispensable for me –I need a sounding board and someone to share the burden with. You have good days and bad days in business – and you need a team you can have a drink with. Involving staff works from both a business perspective and a mental health perspective!
In each shop I own, the managers organise their own socials whether that’s quizzes, bowling nights or charity events. We recently had a 5a side football match – we did one hour of football and then went for a drink. And, the Broadstone branch is raising money for a defibrilator so we’ve done a retro games night. It all builds team spirit.
There’s 35 of us in the business and we’re all on a Whatsapp group. When someone is ill, everyone makes it their responsibility to pitch in. For me, that’s vital to a successful business.