You’re running a salon business and so far, you haven’t had a finicky client. One time, a woman walks in demanding to have her hair cut into something similar to a style worn by a Hollywood celebrity. She’s not satisfied with the results, and she demands that you not charge her for the haircut. How do you deal with such a situation? How can you effectively communicate with the client that she does need to pay for the service without having her throw hysterics or worse, badmouth your business to other customers?
As a business owner, situations like these are when your communication skills are needed. If you don’t have effective communication skills, how can you tell clients that they cannot simply show you a picture of a celebrity and demand that your stylist or makeup artist make them look exactly like that? How should you entice satisfied clients to recommend your service to friends and family so that word of mouth about your business can grow? How can you effectively calm down irritated or harried customers who simply expect you to make them look their best? This is where effective communication skills come in. Read on to learn more about it.
Here are the Skills Needed for Effective Communication
Whether you’re in the spa or beauty salon business, your number one goal is to offer services that will make a client look good and feel good about themselves. During the process, you do need to communicate with them effectively so that you can have a good client-business owner relationship. The minute that a client walks into your salon or spa establishment, you should build rapport so that they will feel at ease around you – and this is where your communication skills are much needed.
To get started, here are the qualities that make for an effective communicator in any type of business:
You’ve probably seen plenty of memes out in social media with the Stephen Covey quote: “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand, they listen with the intent to reply.” This is something that you need to remember as a business owner, especially when dealing with customers. Whether it’s a satisfied or a pissed off client that you are dealing with, you have to listen to exactly what they are telling you in order for you to have a better understanding of the situation. This way, you can formulate and verbalize a reply that’s perfectly suitable for the situation.
Not all business owners have the gift of being good public speakers but as you deal with clients on a daily basis, it’s a skill that you are bound to develop. If you’re not that good at communicating your needs to the people around you, perhaps the first thing that you can work on is clarity of speech. Practice your pitch in front of the mirror and make sure to engage a customer. In no time at all, you can upsell products and services to them simply by improving your communication skills.
In tense or unpleasant situations, the first thing that a client would look for from you as a business owner is empathy. Make sure to put yourself in the client’s shoes. If you were the customer, how would you want the manager or owner of the business to deal with your situation?
Effective communicators also know how to read other people’s moods based on their body language, adjusting their speaking styles accordingly. Other qualities needed for you to be an effective communicator are enthusiasm; using words that a client can easily understand and relate to; using the appropriate tone of voice to match each situation; trying not to interrupt when other people are speaking; and being as concise as possible.
Remember that it does take time to develop these communication skills. Being an entrepreneur, you will be dealing with clients from all walks of life. By communicating effectively with them, you can build a solid, loyal clientele who will make your business thrive in years to come.