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Black barber laughing with a client who is sitting in their chair. They are having a great conversation.
Perfect the Art of Conversation

In the beauty business, perfecting the art of conversation is vital to your success. Communication is an essential part of building a relationship with your clients. You need to be able to communicate with every client regardless of who they are. Conversation makes people feel comfortable. Using the right words contributes to enhancing your guest’s experience. But knowing how to craft the conversation can be tricky.


Communication Guidelines

When communicating with your client, choose your words carefully and mirror the guest’s gestures, speech patterns, and attitude. For example, if your client talks slower and with more thought, really take the time to think about how you respond and speak softly. Or, if your client talks fast and loud, react with lots of excitement.

Be an active listener while your guest is talking. Don’t just listen to respond. Remember: It’s not about you. It’s about them. Some guests will want to tell you about their problems. With these clients, you’ll become like a confidant or therapist to them. The power of touch can open some people up. Your clients may get emotionally naked in front of you. They will tell you things that you can’t believe they are telling you. On the other hand, some may not want to talk at all. Some clients prefer little to no conversation.

Samual Johnson said, “Language is the dress of thought.” He meant that the words you use paint pictures in your guests’ minds. So when you’re communicating with your guests, get rid of these words:
– I can’t
– I don’t
– That’s not our policy
– There are exceptions
– Sorry
– Unfortunately

Tell guests what you can do, not what you can’t do. Your job is to make your guests happy. If you tell guests what you WON’T do, they WON’T be back.

Here are some examples of new vocabulary to use:
Instead of a redo, call it an adjustment.
– Change appointment to a reservation.
– Call concerns, challenges.
– Instead of offering a drink, ask if they would like a beverage.
– Replace “You’re Welcome” with “My Pleasure.”



The Art of Good Conversation

Use these seven tips to craft the perfect conversations with your clients!

1. Use your client’s name often. People love to hear their name spoken – it shows value and importance.

2. Ask leading, open-ended questions such as:
– How did you hear about me, the salon, spa, barbershop, massage business?
– Where do you work?
– How long have you lived here?

3. Remember things that your guest said last time, and ask follow-up questions:
– How did your daughter’s play go last month?
– I remember you were working on renovating your bathroom. How’s that going?
– How was the cruise you and your husband took since I last saw you?

4. Rephrase what they’ve said to show understanding. Listen to understand.

5. Strive to find common ground with the client.
– You golf? I enjoy golf, too! What are your favorite courses to play?
– I’ve been looking for a good lawn care service, too. Have you had any luck?
– I know you work out with a personal trainer, and I’m curious about their services. Can you tell me more?

6. Make the conversation exchange pleasurable. Avoid talking about politics, religion, or potentially controversial topics. Instead, keep the conversation light and fun.

7. Let the guest do 90% of the talking.


The Challenge

Think of other conversation topics and leading questions you could use with your clients during an appointment. First, write them down to help you remember. Then, use this list to keep the conversation flowing with your clients. With time, you’ll master the art of conversation and can easily talk to anyone.


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