Help with a pitch for the owner of the salon...

Discussion in 'Dog Grooming Forum' started by ThatCrazyGroomer, Jun 3, 2013.

  1. ThatCrazyGroomer

    ThatCrazyGroomer Member

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    The salon I work at doesn't have a receptionist... We're all going bonkers over it. We spend half of our time answering phones and checking in clients, which is time we could be spending grooming dogs like we're supposed to be. I LOVE the owner, but she doesn't work in the salon (lives 5 hours away) and just doesn't understand. So, I'd like to get your answers to this and print them out to show her... I'll be printing it Monday night to send to her. EVERYONE who sees this, PLEASE take a second to answer, even if its just a simple yes or no, but feel free to go into detail if you have the time!!!


    If you walked into a grooming salon and saw groomers on the phone while grooming dogs, would you feel it was a good place to have your dog groomed?

    Would you make an appointment?

    Would you, if you already had the appointment, still leave your dog there, with groomers who are clearly stressed trying to answer phones, do intakes and check outs, AND groom their dogs?

    Do you feel its OK for her to take part of our commission to pay a receptionist?

    Thanks guys!!!
     
  2. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    No, no, no, and yes. It's just not professional, at all.

    Weren't you hired to try to get this place straightened out? If that's the case, she should just freaking LISTEN TO YOU! :p
     
  3. ThatCrazyGroomer

    ThatCrazyGroomer Member

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    LOL yes, ma'am! She's just stubborn on the receptionist thing. She doesn't think its part of the problem or at all necessary.
     
  4. MicksMom

    MicksMom Active Member

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    If you walked into a grooming salon and saw groomers on the phone while grooming dogs, would you feel it was a good place to have your dog groomed?

    NO
    Would you make an appointment?

    NO
    Would you, if you already had the appointment, still leave your dog there, with groomers who are clearly stressed trying to answer phones, do intakes and check outs, AND groom their dogs?

    NO
    Do you feel its OK for her to take part of our commission to pay a receptionist?

    YES

    Would this be a compromise-? have a set time for drop off, pick ups and scheduling appointments. For example- drop offs 9-10 AM, Pick ups 4-5PM Grooming only from 10AM-4PM, calls for appointments can be handled during those times. It will cut back on the number of appointments available for the day, but those appointments will be given undivided attention. During groooming time, use an answering machine to answer phone (with message about times to call for appointment).
     
  5. stardogs

    stardogs Behavior Nerd

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    If you walked into a grooming salon and saw groomers on the phone while grooming dogs, would you feel it was a good place to have your dog groomed? Would you make an appointment?

    I'd be very skeptical of the quality of services my dog would recieve. I might ask if the phone while grooming was the norm, and perhaps come back another time to see.

    Would you, if you already had the appointment, still leave your dog there, with groomers who are clearly stressed trying to answer phones, do intakes and check outs, AND groom their dogs?

    No.

    Do you feel its OK for her to take part of our commission to pay a receptionist?

    Yes. A receptionist would be a reasonable business expense.
     
  6. Beanie

    Beanie Clicker Cult Coordinator

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    This probably isn't what you want to hear LOL so feel free to not include it. But I get my hair cut at hair salons that are walk-ins and they don't have a receptionist. The stylists will stop cutting hair to answer the phone, greet people when they walk in, et cetera. That's how it has been for probably five or six years now. I wouldn't be totally shocked at a grooming salon that worked the same way.

    OTOH I still think a receptionist is a wise investment. Is there a "peak" time of day when you have the most calls or walk-ins? If she's unsure of the investment, maybe you can suggest somebody part time for only those peak hours as a trial and she can see what kind of impact it has on her business.
     
  7. Airn

    Airn New Member

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    It really depends.... On the prices... the quality of the grooming... cleaniness... There's a lot of variales that determine whether or not a business will get my (continued) business.

    I don't think it's the worst thing not to have a rectionist, but since it seems to negatively impact the store so much, I would definitely look at alternatives to what you're currently doing.

    I know a hair salon I go to has the hair stylists answer the phones and they switch off every week or so. It helps them learn how to deal with customers, how important scheduling is, etc.

    If you could do that for a little while or maybe on weekends....something, then perhaps the owner wouldn't see as an unecessary expense. I agree with the others on the busy times. However, I think it's easy for someone to get out of touch if they do not work in a job like that daily (or at least more than several hours a week). It's not just answering phones, it's having someone who can deal with people and manage everything that comes into the store. It's the first person they're going to talk to, see, be greeted by, etc. so it needs to be someone who you all would want to represent you.

    Just my opinion, anyway. :p
     
  8. yoko

    yoko New Member

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    I can't answer about making an appointment I've never used a groomer so I don't have experience.

    What you could do is have a stop watch and everytime someone has to stop and do receptionist work start the timer. When you talk to her you can be like this is how much time the groomers have to be away from their post.
     
  9. Red Chrome

    Red Chrome New Member

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    Our shop doesn't have a receptionist nor do we want one. We answer the phone ourselves, schedule our own appointments and check in and out our own dogs. We develop better client relations this way. I don't think a grooming shop needs a receptionist as my experience with having one was decent but she really didn't do anything worth while and routinely screwed up our schedules.
     
  10. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    What about hiring a bather/grooming assistant? That way you aren't paying someone to sit around while the phones aren't busy. They can bath dogs, clean the salon and answer phones.

    I think if you title it as receptionist, it sounds too specialized. Make it sound like the person will be doing a lot more to help the salon out.
     
  11. CaliTerp07

    CaliTerp07 New Member

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    My grooming shop doesn't have a receptionist. Whomever is closest just walks out front to pick up incoming dogs. Drop off hours are only from 7-9 am, and pick up is generally only after 3 though, so for almost 6 hours there are very few interruptions.

    I agree with the idea of hiring an extra set of hands, but not giving the person the title of receptionist. Can they be the sweeper, the greeter, the bather, the phone person, etc? And yes, I would think they would absolutely get part of the commission, if they're making your jobs easier.
     
  12. ThatCrazyGroomer

    ThatCrazyGroomer Member

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    Thanks everyone! I spoke to her this afternoon and it looks like it might be happening. :)
    This salon is an insanely busy place. Friday I clocked the time I spent on the phone / doing intakes and go homes... It was almost two hours, and I want even the one answering the phones most. If a receptionist were there to do the work I personally could fit in at least one more dog, possibly two.
    We have a bather, she refuses to answer the phones unless she absolutely has to, she's always late, just not dependable. There may be a staffing change in that area soon as well, we'll see what happens.

    The owner of the salon said that I had a way of explaining things without making her feel like I was telling her what to do, but also made her think. I'm really enjoying this job, can't wait to get in tomorrow!

    I also pitched a military / senior discount, and a yearly plan for clients which she jumped on. Pretty stoked to be listened to. The other girls had me worried that she was more unreasonable than I had originally thought, which isn't the case. Things just hadn't been explained to her in a way that made sense in her mind. :)
     
  13. lizzybeth727

    lizzybeth727 New Member

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    I'm glad it's working out for you!

    That said, no, I don't think grooming salons generally need receptionists. I worked at a busy salon as a bather/assistant, and IMO it sounds like that's more along the lines of what you need than a receptionist. If you have a bather who is not doing her job, then you need to find another bather, not add on a new position and a new employee.

    As a bather, not only did I handle the dogs who were "just" there for a bath, but I freed up the groomers by bathing their dogs, too. Groomers generally ONLY clipped their dogs, the bathers did everything else - nails, teeth, ears, baths, etc. As well as making appointments and handling customers.

    Personally, if I were taking my dog to a groomer, I'd want to talk to the person who was going to be working on him; when I picked him up I'd want to talk to the person who HAD worked on him. I would not be satisfied talking to the receptionist.

    A few times I've had to drop my cats off at the vet. Once when I picked my cat up, the doctor was in surgery so he couldn't talk to me about the exam. While the receptionist was helpful in explaining what was going on, I personally felt cheated, that I'd paid this professional quite a bit to treat my cat, and he couldn't even talk to me about what was the problem.
     
  14. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    But a human can be told "I'll be right back, I'm going to answer the phone. Stay right here." A dog can't. They have to be left alone somewhere safe. So ideally, crating them. Or, as I imagine, they may get left on the grooming table when someone is in a hurry, and then they can jump off and get strangled or seriously injured. I see a whole host of issues with dog safety if people are stressed and in a hurry.
     

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