Whenever a new client comes to my spa, I always ask them how they found me. Although the answers vary, it’s most often one of these…
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Another question I always ask is why they were searching for a new esthetician. The most common answer I hear to that is that they just moved into the area, or their esthetician moved away.
But in a recent week, I had two new clients find me, and when I asked them these questions, I was taken aback by their answers.
Both of these unrelated clients told me they ultimately found me because their last esthetician made them feel really bad about their skin.
I asked for a bit more information from each of them, and I want to share what I heard and why I think this happened.
In the first situation, the esthetician was trying to encourage the client to spend more money with her by making her feel insecure about her skin. In this case, she tripped up by using fear rather than education.
In the second situation, the esthetician was trying to show how knowledgeable she was by telling the client that using her specific approach would create amazing results for her inflamed skin and cystic acne. Now, this alone wouldn’t have been the worst but, this particular client is 30-years old and just finished aggressive treatment for breast cancer. Understandably, she had valid concerns about what she used on her skin. When asked, the esthetician wouldn’t tell her what “herbs” she was using on her, but instead said to her, “trust me, they are going to make you look younger.”
This client didn’t want to “look younger,” she wanted to soothe and calm her post-chemo inflamed skin. This is a great example of what can happen when we don’t actively listen to what a client wants and needs. We can end up insulting and alienating them.
This made me sad.
After actively listening to each story, I simply said, “I am sorry you felt this way and I will do whatever I can to help you look and feel beautiful.”
What a bummer that someone had to leave a beauty biz practitioner feeling self-conscious instead of feeling beautiful.
It made me even more aware of how we, as beauty biz practitioners, need to approach clients with social etiquette and emotional intelligence.
What do I mean by that?
Social Etiquette is a code of polite and professional conduct. If you pay close attention to this and fine-tune it, you are less apt to offend others and more likely to build client loyalty.
Emotional Intelligence is the ability to identify how you can best support the emotional needs of others.
The truth is that nobody is perfect, and there is always room for improvement. We can all do better by performing an occasional ego check and working daily to improve upon our treatment room etiquette.
How do you improve upon your success skills such as social etiquette and emotional intelligence?
You start by using beauty biz empathy. This is the ability to see a situation through someone else’s circumstances or condition and approach it with a combination of kindness, professionalism, and result-based offerings.
“Empathy represents the foundation skill for all social competencies important for work.” -Daniel Goleman
And of course, you always want to use kind, supportive words keeping in mind how you would want to be spoken to if you were in the same situation.
We want to make clients feel beautiful inside and out.
So, I hope this opens a new level of awareness and a yearning inside of you as it did for me. Meeting and listening to these two new clients triggered something deep within me that made me want to show up and do better for my clients.
Here’s the book I chose to help support me along my new empathy journey, Mirroring People: The Science of Empathy and How We Connect with Others. Perhaps you will find it helpful too.
A finalist for American Spa Magazine’s 2017 Women in Wellness Mentor of the Year, Lori Crete is a highly sought after industry expert and licensed celebrity esthetician. Owner of Southern California’s Spa 10, she is also the founder of The Beauty Biz Club™, a success-based society dedicated to helping beauty practitioners around the world fill their schedule, increase profits and break through to the 6-figure mark.
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