It’s amazing to me that this simple question can cause so much drama. Just today there was a post saying that a spa owner didn’t allow oil and you would have thought that she was Satan. Here were just some of the responses:
“I bet your therapists dont last long” (ugh – from personal experience this isn’t true)
“Lol….im thinking this might be a troll….” (she wasn’t)
” It sucks using seedless lotions..its smells like buttcrack and arm pits..” (she later admitted that it autocorrect happened and it should’ve been scentless)
“I hope so because “don’t allow” kinda makes me think they are not a good leader, glad I’ll never work for someone like that, ppl that think they can tell others how or what they can do can go f themselves for all I care” (okay, don’t get hired)
Lynn and I are on we are massage cream all the way. At DeStress Express we don’t allow our service providers to use oil for full body massages for several reasons:
- Oil never really gets out of sheets
- We do not offer shower services so the clients can only use wet towels to get rid of excess oil from their bodies – this slows down changing out the tables
- Allergies for skin seem to be rising
- Oil gets everywhere
- Massage Creams are great
Now, I realize that there are purest among our Spapreneurs and that’s fine – but if you work at an establishment that wants you to use a certain product there really isn’t a way out of it. And that can cause frustration because you want to perform the service the way you want to.
What this article is really about
This is a small example, but the choice of being able to use whatever products you want, have the hours you want, and make the money you want can’t be totally controlled by you, unless you go independent.
Many of the Spapreneurs we work with have already made the plunge to opening their own, independent businesses. But we know that many of you dream of your own spaces to perform treatments exactly the way you want to – offering products you love, and working with the clients you adore.
But how do you honestly know you’re ready to jump from working from someone else to your own space.
Here’s is how we know you’re ready:
You have a full client load that is able to follow you to your new location
You may have a full client load at your current spa, but can you bring them with you to the new location? This might seem like a simple question – after all these are your clients. But, clients often have their loyalty to not only the practitioner but also the spa itself. We know this from personal experience. Over the years we’ve had loads of spa practitioners leave for various reasons, and unlike a lot of spas we don’t make our practitioners sign a non-compete. First, because it’s unenforceable in most cases – check with your local state to be certain. But more importantly we treat every single client like everyone’s client so it means that they become loyal to our staff and our facility. This means ultimately they are more of a spa’s client than any one practitioner.
You as an individual need to stand out from the staff and facility – you need to be so good that your clients love you – and are willing to follow you to your next location.
You also need clients willing to pay the prices at your new spot – which means that you have to figure out the money aspect of your potential business.
You have the capital it will take to build a solid business
One of the things you MUST consider is the cost of doing business for yourself. You might be an independent contractor currency at a day spa and pay for certain aspects of your business – but when you decided to open a full company you must consider several things – and money is the first.
- How much it will cost you per service to perform each service
- this includes the towels, cream, oils, essential oils, music subscription, taxes, laundry, your time, utilities – you need to know the cost of doing business
- How much you need to live on
- Do you have someone who can help with the monthly living expenses or is it all on you – if it’s all on you should have 6-12 months basic living expenses
- How much the business is really going to cost you to start
- You’ll now be responsible for EVERYTHING – marketing, insurance, taxes, your personal pay, pay of any employees, split of commission for independent contractors. The bottom line is you need to know these costs – and you need to add about 20% more than your estimate.
If you do not have solid answers for these questions you’re not ready – it’s so important to have a plan in place that is adjustable.
You Have a Plan to find new clients and keep current ones
Before going into business yourself you must have a rebooking system – one that helps you keep appointments full. It’s one thing to fill your own books, but if you’re planning on having a business where you have other therapists and practitioners then you MUST have a rebooking plan for clients.
This means you’re going to need to invest in:
- Email marketing system – and free Gmail won’t cut it!
- A scheduling system – preferably online based
- A marketing system and schedule
- Perhaps a front desk or training for everyone on how you want the front desk to go
- Printed materials including menus, business cards, and signage
This is just a small list of items, but the point is you need to REALLY think about if independence is worth the work. There is nothing wrong with working for someone else, or having a smaller spa business.
If you’re struggling with making this jump, you don’t have to do it alone. We offer one-on-one coaching that can help clarify where you want to go.