Retaining New Clients – Are you getting hired or fired?

March 13, 2014

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Image courtesy of marin /

Once a month, we sit down with each of our team members and meet with them individually.   We do this to honor the ritual of gathering, maintain a sense of connectedness among the team, and improve individual performance by addressing areas of success and opportunities.    We call this meeting a coaching session between leaders and team members.  Leaders encourage their teams to bring the agenda to the meeting, not the other way around.   The agenda can be anything they want to discuss, personal and professional because we believe that there’s no such thing as a clearly distinct separation between work and personal.     The whole person is effected by both personal and work situations.   But that’s not necessarily the point of this blog, although it might make a great topic for a future post.   In these meetings though, we do often discuss the business drivers (ie. client retention, productivity, prebooking, etc.)
This short blog is about retaining new clients.  In particular,  it is the importance of making the right impression with new clients right out of the gate.
When it comes to new clients, here’s a question for you.  Did you get the job?
What if I told you that every time a new client comes in and sits in your chair, you are really being interviewed for a new job.  That’s right.  The new client is interviewing you for the job of being their new hair stylist.   Would that prompt you to change how you performed during the service?    What would your appearance look like?  How would you conduct yourself during this interview?   Think about the day you interviewed for a new job.   I’m assuming you dressed professionally, prepared for questions that might have been asked, and you carried yourself with pride and confidence.   That’s exactly how we should be looking at new clients when they sit in our chair.    The ultimate question you have to ask is this, “Did you get the job?”  How would you go about finding out?   Look at your new client retention percentage.   If you’re only retaining 20% new clients, that would mean that you are retaining  2 out of every 10 new clients.   In other words, 8 clients didn’t hire you, and only 2 did.   Something to think about.

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Located in Austin, Texas.

Chris Murphy