Are You Still Trying to Be Perfect?

are-you-still-trying-to-be-perfect_1This weekend I’ll be sharing the stage with some of the UK’s best salon owners at Pro Beauty North. We will be discussing “What we wish we had known when we started in business”. I’m sure this is going to be a really open and robust discussion. If you’re attending Pro Beauty North please do join us!

In preparing for this discussion I got to thinking how we all seem to have a tendency to try to be perfect, then beat ourselves up when things invariably don’t go so well.

Why do we do that?

As business owners we seem to set ourselves some really strange rules around how we should be perceived in the eyes of others. This is usually to the total detriment of ourselves, our nearest and dearest, as well as our businesses.

We set off on the early days of our businesses with our heads full of dreams and ambitions. We are ready to take on the world!

But soon enough the realisation kicks in that maybe it isn’t all going to be a bed of roses. And of course we can’t just walk away or simply switch off when things go wrong.

We don’t want to burden friends and family who have limited time and resources to help, so instead we put a brave face on things.

Often we also have this other weird notion that goes like this:

If business is doing really well, then we should play down our success.
Partly in case it doesn’t last, and partly from the notion that we don’t want your clients and staff to think we are making too much money from them.

When you stop to think about it, doesn’t this seem like a totally crazy way of thinking?

After 28 years as a salon owner I find that when I speak to other salon, spa and clinic owners, one thing is for sure. We ALL have the same business issues in common. Yet everyone I have spoken to thinks the business problems they are grappling with are unique to them.

Most problems seem much bigger than they really are because we don’t want to admit we need help or guidance, or we simply don’t know where to get the right help from.

This gets harder the longer we have been in business. Everyone expects that you should know what to do and that your experience should prevent problems occurring in the first place.

I firmly believe that we should all embrace and celebrate when things go wrong as well as when things are going really well.

Business would be pretty boring if every day was perfect.

We need the challenges our businesses throw at us so that we can learn from them.

Over the years I have had many sleepless nights worrying about challenges in my business. The truth is that worrying doesn’t have any impact on the issue.

Now, when I look back at issues in my business life that at the time appeared to be huge problems, I realise that all worry did was make them appear much bigger in my head then they really were.

The reality is, each of these issues was a lesson that made me stronger as a business person.

That’s why I feel this discussion What we wish we had known when we started in business will be so valuable. We can all learn from each other’s mistakes and short-cut our own learning process.

We really all do need to embrace and celebrate how great we are for taking that big step into business, and learn to tackle our business issues together.

To book this discussion or any of the other business talks at Professional Beauty, all you have to do is click on the seminar link below, select the topics you’d like the most help with, then enter the code DISS50 in the Discount box and SUSAN ROUTLEDGE in the promo box. This will get you a 50% discount on all seminars and workshops too.

I hope to meet you there and help you to grow your Salon to brand new heights!

Here’s to your salon’s success,

Susan x


Salon Christmas Working Hours Explained…

As we officially leave Summer and head at full speed into Autumn, the next hot topic from your team will be what the salon Christmas working hours should be.

Christmas falls on a Sunday this year, which always throws doubts into how you should pay your staff.
I have asked Employment law specialist David Wright to give an insight into your legal requirements this year.

Being prepared and well informed in advance, gives you credibility so that you can eliminate any doubts well in advance.

You can now start planning with David’s Advice…

David Wright
David Wright – Employment Law Specialist

Saturday 24th December is a normal day Sunday 25th is Christmas Day for those staff who would normally work on a Sunday and would have worked. They are paid and use a days’ holiday.

Monday 26th is Boxing Day, if an employee normally works a Monday and the business is closed then they are paid and use a days’ holiday.

* Tuesday 27th is the substitute Christmas day for staff who don’t normally work a Sunday.
* If you have staff that work on a Sunday then they have had their Christmas Day and Tuesday is a normal working day. If Sunday isn’t a working day then, if you close on the 27th, staff who normally work a Tuesday are paid and use a days’ holiday.
The same principle applies on New Years Day which is a Sunday. The substitute for staff who don’t work a Sunday is Monday the 2nd In Scotland where the 2nd is a bank holiday that transfers to Tuesday the 3rd.


Here are a couple of examples:

Example 1
Helen is employed to work 3 days a week Monday to Wednesday.
She doesn’t work Sunday 25th so Boxing Day is the 26th and Tuesday is the substitute Christmas day. Assuming the salon is closed on 26th and 27th Helen is paid for 2 days and uses 2 days holiday entitlement.

Example 2
Sandra works Friday and Saturday. Neither of the bank holidays fall on her working days so she isn’t paid, she doesn’t get a lieu day and doesn’t use any holiday.

David Wright writes a monthly article for Professional Beauty Magazine.
You can learn more at

Hope to see you at Professional Beauty North.

Watch the video and claim your 50% advance booking discount and gift from me at any of my seminars.

Here’s to your salon’s success,

Susan x