Welcome to the Salon Owner’s Podcast, Phorest FM Episode 57. Co-hosted by Killian Vigna and Zoé Bélisle-Springer, Phorest FM is a weekly show that puts forth a mix of interviews with industry thought-leaders, salon/spa marketing tips, company insights and information on attending Phorest Academy webinars. Phorest FM is produced every Monday morning for your enjoyment with a cup of coffee on your day off.

Phorest FM Episode 57

Phorest FM is back for another exciting year ahead! To kick it all off, your co-hosting duo (Killian Vigna & Zoe Belisle-Springer) recorded an episode from the Salon Owners Summit, one of the most talked about event in the hair and beauty industries in Europe as well as further afield! On the day, attendees heard firsthand from thought leaders and this episode gathers their thoughts and reflections on how one can be successful in the salon industry.



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Killian Vigna: Welcome to the Phorest FM Podcast, episode 57. I’m Killian Vigna…

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And I’m Zoe Belisle-Springer. We’re back and ready to rock 2018. And so to kick it all off, we’re hosting our very first episode of the year from Salon Owners Summit at the Convention Center in Dublin.

Killian Vigna: Expect exclusive interviews, vox pops, reflections and more. So grab yourself a cup of coffee, sit back, relax and join us weekly for all your salon’s business and marketing needs.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Good morning Killian!

Killian Vigna: Good morning Zoe. So serious day today.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Ah yeah, I’m very excited about it, to be honest. I’m looking forward to quite a few talks.

Killian Vigna: Yeah we’ve just had Gavin Hoare on stage there, he was very good. He was going through about Gavin Hoare was kind of the Maitre D of Richard Ward. And yeah, 500 people in attendance, seems to have gone off a hit straight away.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Oh yeah, even just at the registration this morning, it was buzzing, there were loads of people coming in, super excited. I mean social media has not stopped since 8:00 AM this morning. So that’s pretty much my job all day.

Killian Vigna: And the fact there was a pub call last night, you’d expect to see some serious heads but no, everyone is well excited about it for today.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, no, it’s absolutely great. So Gavin Hoare was on and like you were saying, he was talking about how to be the expert that you are and ways that you can improve customer service and things like that. And at the moment actually, Steve Martin is just about to hit the stage.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, just gearing up for him now and I’m really looking forward to this one.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: This is one of your favourites.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, Steve Martin, the author of “Yes! 50 Secrets From The Science Of Persuasion”. He’s also done the “Small Big” and things like those, so it’s the six principles of the influence of persuasion. Things like those and how to implement them in the salon so yeah, looking forward to that one now.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Definitely, yeah. So we have confirmed actually that we’ll have an interview with him, right after his talk.

Killian Vigna: We’re just going to go straight in, follow him off the stage.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: We’re going to have a listen to his talk and then get straight into it. So we’ll catch you then.


Killian Vigna: So first off, brilliant presentation.

Steve Martin: Thank you.

Killian Vigna: Like you had the attention of everyone and you managed to keep it so relevant because like myself and Zoe, we’ve read the books before so we kind of had an idea what was going on but the way you were actually able to relate it to the salon owners there and the humor as well. So well done. Fair play!

Steve Martin: Well thank you. I really appreciate that.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: It was really really good.

Steve Martin: That’s good to hear.

Killian Vigna: So yeah, we just have two questions here. Kind of fairly simple ones but the first one are, you have six principles. If you could pick three that you could… What you feel make the most impact in a salon tomorrow, what would you pick?

Steve Martin: Well I think the audience actually picked the three. So one of the things that when you’re standing on the stage, you can notice you know what people are writing down and there were a few things. So when we talked about the authority principle and that experiment of how introducing a staff member as a legitimate expert led to an increase in appointments, an increase in contracts. I noticed a lot of pens going up on that one. So I think that would be one example.

The second, which I knew about is a problem, people that book appointments and then fail to show up, the no-shows. So I kind of felt that that would always kind of land quite well with the group and that seemed to be again the case. Everyone kind of wrote that down. And the loyalty study as well, that giving people a head start on the loyalty programs, that seemed to land pretty well as well.

So I think the authority and consistency and then the third one would be social proof. You know that whole idea of just pointing out what the most popular shampoo or conditioner is being bought by most people. Lots of pens went up at that moment as well. So those would be my three.

Killian Vigna: Because like you were saying, it was such a simple… Because they all have the menus, they all have it, even with the online booking and stuff like that. And all you’re doing is just putting a couple of words besides going, “Most popular” or even like an asterisk around it and it kind of grabs everyone’s attention. But I did the love the expert one that you were talking about where it’s the same with the… We can even put it into practice. When someone rings up we’ll go, “Oh I’ll just put you onto the training department,” if they’re looking for training or support. Or instead, actually introduce their name, go, “Well actually, I’ll put you onto let’s say Helen in training who has worked in the industry for the last what, five years. She’ll be able to best address your training needs,” and stuff like that. It’s just such a small little change.

So then the second question we had was if you were a salon owner, how would you use the power of influence to persuade your clients to buy from you rather than supermarkets and pharmacies?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So we’ve noticed that that’s a big thing that keeps coming back. It’s like how do I compete against the local supermarket if we have the same products?

Steve Martin: Yeah, well there’s probably two things there. The first is to recognize the moment and the moment being that when they’re in your salon, they’re not in a supermarket. The moment they leave the door and they go out, that’s it, it’s gone. And you know so they’re going to see that array of different shampoos and conditioners in the supermarket and that will be the next time they’re exposed to that. So I think the first thing is to recognize that there’s a moment of opportunity.

Killian Vigna: They’re there for you, they’re there for your expertise.

Steve Martin: Yeah, you’re the one- so, use that moment. So getting your salon staff in that moment, “Oh I love my hair, you’ve done such a great job. Thank you very much indeed.” “Well, maybe you’d like to take that home with you. Here’s the product we used.” So it’s the moment I think. Because the product isn’t any different, it’s the same product, it’s the same packaging. So I think the moment is one and then the other is to say, “As your salon manager I would recommend this.” That’s not the kind of recommendation you’re going to get in the supermarket.

So the differentiation can’t be between the products because they’re exactly the same. So the differentiation is to be the messenger. So in this case, who would you be more inclined to follow the lead of. Is it salon manager with 20 years experience or someone behind-

Killian Vigna: Someone just selling the product and not giving the valued advice.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: I suppose it relates to Gavin’s talk this morning, acting like the expert you are and taking the opportunity of that.

Steve Martin: Yeah, so one of the things that was interesting about Gavin’s talk of acting as the expert you are is recognizing that you are an expert.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Mm-hmm (affirmative) yeah.

Steve Martin: It was kind of quite a… We don’t walk around going, “Oh I’m an expert in this, you should listen to me.” So I think there the job of the salon owner or salon manager is… So you may recall that study I showed you in the health centres where-

Killian Vigna: The NHS one.

Steve Martin: Yeah, so it’s the impact. If salon managers and owners are talking about their staff in that way, that has an impact on the staff. So if you want your staff to act as experts, introduce them as experts. I think that’s where the two things come together.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: I think that’s brilliant, yeah.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, no, that’s spot on.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Thank you so much.

Killian Vigna: Thanks very much for that.


Zoe Belisle-Springer: So that was Steve Martin, great personality, great to chat to one-to-one. I think you’ve got loads more insights and I don’t know for yourself but that was probably one of my favourite ones as well, across even last year’s talks. That was amazing.

Killian Vigna: Yeah I mean like for someone outside of the industry, he made his talk so relevant to all of the audience and got them engaged. So fair play to him on that. It was absolutely brilliant and then chatting with him after again, it was even more information that was… It’s just, he’s a great speaker, great presenter and I suppose excellent expert. He really is an expert.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, so coming up this afternoon, we’re just heading into the networking lunch at the moment. After that there’s going to be two more workshops. So as we had announced previously, we had workshops this year which is a very new addition to the summit. So we had one this morning just after- well between Gavin Hoare’s talk and Steve Martin’s talk. And then we’re having two straight after lunch to get people moving and interacting a little bit before sitting down again for talks.

Killian Vigna: Yeah. So the three talks are the Salon Visual Merchandising, the GDPR and the Health and Wellbeing. And in the first round ones I attended the GDPR one which was our Head of Product, Paddy Monaghan, he was up on the main stage. And it was interesting talking to salon owners after because even though some were very aware of GDPR and others have just kind of heard about it, we thought this was going to be quite a heavy content-wise workshop for them to take in a lot but they said, “No, it was brilliant” because they knew it was something they had to get on top of.

They found it more informative than inundated by information.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Do you know what I’m going to add to that? I even heard some feedback of one salon owner saying that they weren’t too concerned just yet and they were like, “Oh we’ll be fine without prepping for it and this and that” and they came out of the talk being like, “Okay, no, we have to be on this.”

Killian Vigna: Yeah, so I think we’re going to split up now ourselves and one of us is going to try and get the Salon Visual Merchandising and the other one is going to be… So that Health and Wellbeing workshop, unfortunately, we had Aaron Carroll who, as Ronan said, the only person from Dublin managed to be stuck in a different country. So, unfortunately, he couldn’t attend but you know, things happen. So Chris Brennan has taken over from that one today and he only just got last minute this morning. So I’ve already kind of seen a couple of people coming out of his workshop really happy so I’m looking forward to popping into it myself.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, exactly. So he’s going to be talking about work-life balance and then on the salon visual merchandising one we have Rowena Doyle doing a presentation on that and I attended it this morning actually but I’ll probably pop in again, just to get a few things. Because I’ve been popping in and out of all of them, so catching bits and pieces here and there.

Killian Vigna: I’ve just been into the one.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah and after the workshops actually we’re going to have Valerie Delforge stepping on stage. She’ll be delivering her talk on managing and motivating staff for success and after that-

Killian Vigna: Yeah we have Tabatha Coffey from Tabatha Takes Over, the hit Bravo TV show. So she’s actually going to be arriving in here anytime soon and we’re just going to go straight into the green room and ask her two questions we have prepared.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Hopefully you enjoy this, we’re not going to be recording anything special until the closing remarks from Ronan Perceval and then we’ll head over to the after party, have a few vox pops there.


If you had to rebrand a salon that was in the worst imaginable position and you only had $1,000 to do that, what would you tackle first and why?

Tabatha Coffey: Oh, business cards. Really important. Website, you can build yourself so they’re cheap now. So you can do it yourself even if you’re not great at it and put something up that looks okay. So it’s going to be minimal what it costs you for the web hosting and just build it yourself.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Tabatha Coffey: A lot of things don’t cost money so you can elbow grease it, clean it, you can paint it, that’s kind of cheap. I would put the money on the big ticket things. If equipment needed to be changed then that’s definitely something that needs to be done so that aesthetically it looks okay and it looks appealing to a client. I think a great software system is really important. You can’t function your business well and to me, it’s the foundation. So if I only had a grand, that $1,000 has to go into foundational things. What’s going to make my business good in the long run?

So that’s a computer system, it’s business cards, it’s online presence and a website and then I would go to the pretty there and get as creative as I had to.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And if… Okay, so you’ve also owned a salon, how do you feel about the whole booth renting situation becoming more popular and some people feel very uncomfortable with it, some people are blending it within their models, how do you feel about that?

Tabatha Coffey: I think there are pros and cons for both. Because I’ve lived in America for so long, it is really common practice. So it’s something that has been in America for a long time. I know it’s newer to different countries and it’s starting to come in. So people are starting to try and wrap their head around it and their brains are probably exploding a little because they’re not sure how it lives within our industry. And it’s done quite well, living in America. So that should give people some positivity. Hopefully, that it works well.

There definitely are pros and cons. I think if you’re a small independent person and you want to have your own business and maybe do it more on your terms and you realize that you don’t want a big staff and you don’t want that big commitment, then it can be a great opportunity for you. If you’re someone that wants to have a staff and wants to have a team and a lot of people in there, then my recommendation is to make sure you have rules in place. Just because their business is functioning within a business, doesn’t mean that you can’t set it up that we have a standard that we adhere to and we have a way that we do things and there’s a protocol that we follow and this is an expectation from you.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So you have consistency.

Tabatha Coffey: And I think when that starts to get lost, is when things kind of start to go awry and it becomes messy.

Killian Vigna: Yeah because it is your business and you’re letting them come into your salon. So even though they’re bringing in clients and stuff like that, they still kind of have to adhere to what you have set out. You can’t give them full free reign, can you? Or would you…?

Tabatha Coffey: I would not and I think that’s where the problems come in. And I think a lot of people have that mentality that “I just want to fill my business. I just want to fill my business and make my money” and that’s why they may go that route. And I don’t want to have to deal with responsibility and taking care of people. When a client walks into a business, you know, if it’s Tabatha’s, they’re coming because it’s Tabatha’s. They’re not coming because Mandy rents a chair and John rents a chair and Joseph does his own thing. Right, they come for the name of the business and the brand that’s built. And I think that that’s what people still have to remember.

So yes, you want consistency. You want to put a strong brand message out there. You want a team that you feel proud of. So anytime the work is coming out the door and people say, “I go to X salon.” That draws the business in and people feel good about it. And the only way to do that is to have rules in place and have an expectation and put that on people.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And can go you go all the way up to making like the visual branding consistent within the salon, even if there are many booth renters? Can you go up to that level?

Tabatha Coffey: Absolutely. I believe you can and I think it’s really important. The business we’re in is a visual business anyway and people are attracted to brand and to what the brand stands for and what the place looks like. And you have to keep that level if you want to be successful. And the people that have really done super well with doing booth rental in their businesses have kept a consistency and kept a level and said, “Yes, we welcome you in. And we want your business to come in here, but here is the way that we all play together. Here is the way that we all work together.” So that everyone is still getting that team environment and still looking around and feeling proud of the other work that’s coming through everyone’s business. And I think that’s the way that it’s really successful. Not when it just becomes a free for all for everyone.

Killian Vigna: And do you have any advice for someone so if they’ve decided, “Yeah, okay I’m going to booth rent, I’m going to let someone come into my salon…” Would you treat it almost as a recruitment process? So have kind of… I suppose, do you have any tips for someone…?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Who to get in?

Killian Vigna: Yeah like how do you go about kind of deciding who you’re going to let come into your salon? Much like who are you going to hire?

Tabatha Coffey: Very much like you would your staff. So you look at all the same things that you would want from your staff. Are they reliable, are they consistent, are they good hairdressers? Do they have a good work ethic? Do they have a clientele? So that kind of mindset you would want to play into as well. The other thing, if that’s the business that you’re opening, you need to seek outside advice and speak to an accountant, speak to a lawyer.

Make sure what you need to do to have an agreement because essentially you’re a landlord. That’s what you are.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Fair enough. Yeah, I didn’t even think about that.

Killian Vigna: You need to make sure you are covered.

Tabatha Coffey: Because you are a landlord, you need to make sure that not just your business is covered but everything is taken care of and everything is kind of no problems down the road. And that’s a really important thing to do as well. So make sure that there is a rental agreement. Make sure that you do have something with yourself and the people that you’re getting in, “this is what I expect from you even though you’re renting and here’s what I’m going to do for you. I’m going to provide A, B and C.” Whatever it is. Right, there’s give and take with both.

Or, “If you come into my business then we’re going to use X product. Or we’re going to do it this way.” To keep that consistency. And that’s really important to make sure all of that is done in the beginning and up front and the best way to do that is to have all the systems in place, have the foundation there, go to a lawyer, make sure what you can and can’t do and have everything written up so everyone is clear from day one.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, get everyone on the same team from the start. That’s been absolutely brilliant yeah. Thanks very much for that.

Tabatha Coffey: You’re welcome.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, thank you.

Killian Vigna: Cheers.


Zoe Belisle-Springer: So we’re just popping into the closing remarks of the end of the day, well just before the after party of course.

Killian Vigna: It’s the first half of the day done.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, so we’re going to pop in just now. We’ve got a few bits and pieces of Ronan Perceval, Phorest Salon Software’s CEO, closing remarks and we’ll catch you straight after with an interview with Ronan as well.


Ronan Perceval: And so there’s one thing for you guys to think about next year, and something that I think we’re going to think about a lot in our business too is that how we can we be an expert and how can our teams be experts in what they do? Whether it’s a specific thing or the business as a whole. And so we’re wrapping it up. I just have a couple of thank yous to quickly make and then a few instructions about tonight. But first of all, can we get a big round of applause for all our speakers? And we also really want to thank Alex and Sinead and Aoife who have done so much work throughout the year to make today so good. And also the Phorest Team as well.

And finally and most importantly, we want to thank you guys for being a massive support to Phorest for the last 14 years and making days like this possible,  and can you give yourselves the biggest round of applause of all. So let’s go party, thank you very much.

Zoe Belisle: So all the speakers have now walked off stage. Ronan has walked off stage, he’s now with us for the podcast, Ronan, what are your insights for today? What are the key takeaways for yourself?

Ronan Perceval: Yeah, it was a brilliant event. We had nearly 500 people there for the first time so it was amazing.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: The venue was amazing.

Ronan Perceval: Yeah, the venue was brilliant.

Killian Vigna: They even had the Phorest purple outside for us.

Ronan Perceval: Yeah, the Phorest purple going down they Quays was amazing. But I think yeah, the theme was “Great Starts Here” which was a deadly theme anyway but it was really interesting to see how the different speakers coming from different backgrounds, like there’s people from the hair industry, from the beauty industry, there’s people who are like a totally academic background like Steve Martin. And it was just really interesting to see them actually all say the same things in different ways.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah definitely.

Ronan Perceval: You know what I mean? The biggest one was I think all three of them specifically talked at least maybe a third of their speeches each about being an expert and actually that is why someone goes to a beauty salon, why someone goes to a hair salon, is to meet an expert, to fix a problem with their skin, their hair, their nails, whatever it is. But also, by being an expert you’re much more likely to be able to charge more, to be able to get people to come back. To be able to listen to your advice. To get people to buy retail which is the big one again.

And so it’s just… If you’re going to make a great salon next year, if you make yourself an expert and help enable your staff to be experts in different domains within the beauty salon or within the hair salon, you’re going to have a great year, you know?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Another thing that I really noticed was building a brand and being consistent within the visual identity but also the way you act and talk about your brand.

Ronan Perceval: Yeah, that was deadly. Because Gavin talked about being consistent as one of his seven universal things. And then yeah Steve talked about being consistent as one of his six kind of rules of persuasion. And then Tabatha talked about it as well. So it’s just like consistent, consistent, consistent. And it’s just, I find personally, that’s the hardest thing to do because, yeah, it’s a discipline. But I think it’s clearly, the more habits you have, if you build habits, that’s how you build consistency.

Yeah, it was great. Other things as well, I think making people feel special, that came through today big time. I don’t know if that’s necessarily to do with the theme but it’s just really it’s what the whole thing is about. And if you make clients feel special and if you make you’re staff feel special then you’re onto a winner.

Killian Vigna: A good experience all round yeah.

Ronan Perceval: There’s a lot about staff today, wasn’t there? Treating staff like clients. And I thought Valerie was brilliant in that and she’s had some amazing blogs and podcasts anyway. So yeah, I just think like the small little things that you can do. That was the other thing, so much of this stuff is small, it costs nothing to do. If you want a great business, you can do it. You know what I mean? It’s there. There’s so much stuff just there and from those speeches but also on our blog and podcast every single week. It’s all there.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: It’s when you say the small things, we interviewed Tabatha earlier today and she was… We asked her, “if you had a salon in the worst imaginable position and only had a grand to turn it over, what would you focus on?” And the grand would go towards the foundation, so software, anything that makes the business run. But everything else, it’s all just little things, she said. You do all the little things that don’t cost anything, you’re going to have a brand anyway, just invest the thousand in what needs to run your salon.

Ronan Perceval: You almost just need to make the decision or the promise to yourself, “we’re going to make it great.” Once you say, “I’m promising to do that this year” you will. And I really wanted to do that at the end, I had this big thing where we were all going to make a promise together to make this the best year ever.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: We could do it after after party. We’re heading there, we’ll do it at the after party.

Ronan Perceval: Yeah, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Big cheers.

Ronan Perceval: In front of everyone. Big cheesy promise… They’re running us out the door.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Right, well thank you so much Ronan and we’ll head over to the after party.

Ronan Perceval: Looking forward to it.


Zoe Belisle-Springer: So as you can probably hear with the sound here, we’re just headed into the after party and there’s quite an atmosphere at the moment.

Killian Vigna: Oh it’s buzzing yeah. The place is starting to fill up already.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: It’s very nice. So we have Sharon here who is attending the Summit today. Sharon where are you from exactly?

Sharon: PA Hair, Balbriggan.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And how did you find the day?

Sharon: It was absolutely wonderful, everything was on point. The timing was perfect, all the presentations were absolutely excellent. I have to say, everything was absolutely wonderful. There was more staff there then you needed to help us around the place. It was absolutely amazing.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And it was your first time at the Summit?

Sharon: First time this year.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Amazing. That’s great.

Sharon: Absolutely amazing is the word I would use.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Who was your favourite speaker? Out of curiosity?

Sharon: Well I am a Tabatha Coffey fan so I will go and say, she’s my best. I really enjoyed her, I really did but I have to say, all day, Gavin was brilliant. Chris was my favourite of the whole day.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Really?

Sharon: Yeah, Chris stood in at the last minute and we were told he stood in at the last minute. The presentation was upbeat, it was wonderful, it was fun and everyone left… I was in the pink group, everybody left as a group with a smile on their face and everybody was laughing.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Oh that’s brilliant, thanks so much.

Sharon: No problem at all. Any time.


Killian Vigna: Hi Liza, did you enjoy today did you?

Liza: Oh Killian, it was amazing. It really was, it was a fantastic day.

Killian Vigna: And was this your first year coming, was it?

Liza: No, no. We come every year.

Killian Vigna: Come every year?

Liza: We love it, we love it?

Killian Vigna: Best year so far was it?

Liza: Yes, I think it was yeah.

Killian Vigna: How did you find it with the workshops being kind of added in today?

Liza: It was unusual but we really enjoyed it. Yeah, it was, it was different. It was good.

Killian Vigna: Was there anything that kind of really stood out to you today that you’ve come away from…?

Liza: I loved Valerie.

Killian Vigna: Valerie Delforge?

Liza: Yeah, I thought she was very, very inspirational. I wish we had more time with her.

Killian Vigna: Really?

Liza: Yeah I liked her.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: We’ll have her on the podcast way more.

Liza: Yeah I’m going to watch her.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: She is a contributor to the blog and the podcast, so we’ll have her.

Liza: Yeah, I thought she was very inspirational. I could have learned a lot from her, I know.

Killian Vigna: Nice, and did you come with your full team or are you on your own today?

Liza: It was just the three of us, three of us came but next year we’re planning on bringing about six.

Killian Vigna: Oh really? You just feel like kind of everyone should get this?

Liza: I feel like you know, you’ve just had Christmas, you worked so hard. In between Christmas and New Year, it’s a bit of a… And then we have Dublin to look forward to and then I just always feel really motivated by this weekend and I just think, “Right, this is my to-do list.” So I plan my year and I plan my to-do list for my reviews and everything from today. Tomorrow we will go back and have a meeting and plan everything. It really, really motivates us.

Killian Vigna: So you’ll use this as part of your new strategy basically?

Liza: Absolutely, yeah. Marketing strategy, staff reviews, staff performance, everything. It gives us a few new ideas.

Zoe Belisle: What size salon are you actually?

Liza: We have a team of 19.

Killian Vigna: 19?

Liza: Yes, 19 yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Well done.

Liza: Yeah so it’s quite a big salon. Yeah, so I would like to bring them all. If we have an amazing Christmas. No, we tried to bring the management but next year we’re going to do it as an incentive as well. So to the therapists maybe, it’s going to be a retail incentive, “you come to Dublin with us.”

Zoe Belisle-Springer: That’s really interesting, that’s the first time I’ve ever heard that.

Liza: Yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: That’s a really good incentive actually.

Liza: Yeah, good incentive. Because we do have fun while we’re here as well.

Killian Vigna: Yeah exactly, it’s the three days. You’re here for the full weekend, aren’t you?

Liza: I don’t enjoy the Guinness at all.

Killian Vigna: You don’t enjoy the Guinness at all?

Liza: No I can’t do the Guinness. And when they say to mix it with champagne, I’m sorry, I can’t do that.

Killian Vigna: Oh champagne for tonight, oh okay.

Liza: No mixing Guinness with champagne, really? Do you guys do that?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: No I would not.

Killian Vigna: No, wouldn’t mix Guinness with anything.

Liza: No apparently that’s a delicacy or whatever you call it over here.

Killian Vigna: Really?

Liza: I’ll stick to the prosecco.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Oh yes.

Killian Vigna: Guinness and Jameson now, start off on the Guinness and finish off on the Jameson.

Liza: Guinness and lime, I’ve tried that with the blackcurrant, it just doesn’t do it for me. But I love everything else about Dublin.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Well, thank you so much.

Liza: Oh it’s a pleasure. Lovely, thank you, guys.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: It was lovely talking to you.

Killian Vigna: No problem.

Liza: Thank you. It’s always a pleasure.

Killian Vigna: Have a great night anyway.

Liza: You too. See ya.


Killian Vigna: Cheers. So Ed, welcome to the Summit, obviously. How are you getting on with it?

Ed: You know what? The Summit has been awesome. We were a bit apprehensive at first like why should we go and stuff like that but so glad we came. We’ve learnt so much. There’s so many things that we were doing that we didn’t realize we were doing but then it’s the case of, if you don’t know what you’re doing, it’s then hard to kind of follow up and add that additional value to what it is that you’re doing.

Killian Vigna: Because it’s good to have an outside approach every now and again.

Ed: Oh yeah, definitely.

Killian Vigna: I mean we’ve said it to the other salon owners that we’ve had. Even though the Ùbusiness might be going for you, someone will always see something different and be able to give you that extra bit of advice and feedback.

Ed: Exactly, exactly. I think it’s like, a shark. A shark is continuously swimming and once you stop, you’re dead, kind of thing. So coming to the summit has actually kind of just allowed us to just take a step out of our box, look at what it is that we’re doing and say, “Okay, you know what? This is where we can improve, this is the stuff that’s going to allow our business to grow and this is what we need to do in order to grow and move forward as a business.”

So the Summit has been awesome for that and I think… Not even I think, I know we’re going to be regulars from now on. So the Summit 2019, we will be there unless the dates change and it’s going to be 2018 but whenever there’s a Summit, we’re going to be there because it’s been absolutely invaluable and we can’t wait to get back and incorporate the stuff that we learnt into the business.

Killian Vigna: So this is your first Summit then I’m assuming?

Ed: It’s our first Summit yeah.

Killian Vigna: And you were saying you were hesitating about coming to it, did you come alone or did you bring your whole team?

Ed: Well the business is myself and my wife and we have a staff as well. So myself and my wife came along, she is mingling somewhere, I don’t know where, I’ve lost her. If you want to lose your wife, bring her to the Summit!

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Are we keeping that in?

Ed: If you want to.

Killian Vigna: Oh we’ll definitely keep that in.

Ed: Ah, now in saying that, she’s somewhere, she’s talking to other business owners and it’s literally, it’s crazy because as salon owners we all experience the same challenges. We all experience the same difficulties, staff retention, keeping staff motivated, making sure we hit our targets, etcetera, etcetera. So it’s nice to actually be able to speak to other people who are on the same boat as you and just getting their perspective on things and what things they’ve done differently and what things you can take from them to incorporate into your business. But the speakers today have been awesome. And yeah, I’m looking forward to the next Summit.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: The countdown is on.

Ed: Yeah, so this is over, I’m looking forward to the next one. So it’s been brilliant so far.

Killian Vigna: Thanks very much for that Ed, that was absolutely brilliant.

Ed: I’m freezing right now, I don’t know how you guys are managing out here. But it’s okay.

Killian Vigna: So yeah well, I suppose, I think it’s time to wrap up the show because we’re out in the smoking area here where it’s the quietest area of the night. It’s absolutely freezing but the buzz here is unbelievable. You’ve just heard from the guys that were talking there, everyone is in great form and like I don’t know for you, it kind of comes back to being the expert that you are.

Zoe Belisle: Yeah. It was the expert but also the way you communicated with people.

Killian Vigna: Yeah. Yes.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Even just the wording, not just like expertise.

Killian Vigna: And I think one of our speakers said it earlier, it’s hard to tell yourself that you’re an expert but at the end of the day, if you’ve got a business and you’ve got a team behind you and you’ve got clients coming back to you day and day, that’s an expert to me.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. If you know how to solve someone’s problem…

Killian Vigna: Professional services. And just another thing from me, just from tonight, networking. Like salon owners, it doesn’t seem to be a thing that they do. Now, I understand that in your town you’ve got confrontation and stuff. One thing to take away from this is to try and reach out to salon owners in towns away from you. Because you can’t bear the brunt of everything on your own.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: You can’t no. And that’s why we keep talking about mentorship and things like that. We keep referring to that and I think it’s really, really important and I think looking at people networking all day, I think that’s kind of lacking in the industry at the moment.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, those are my kind of wrap up points from today.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, well listen I mean, from myself, I’ve been on social media answering all the comments all the time.

Killian Vigna: You have been flat out today.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: I mean, I haven’t processed all the information yet because there’s been so much going on. But it’s been fantastic to have everyone at the Convention Center before the tours, you were at the tours yesterday.

Killian Vigna: I was at the tours last night, was brilliant, everyone was just in such good spirit because of the anticipation of what’s to come.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Oh yeah and then there’s the after party today, it’s closing. It’s 9:00 PM but people are still here and having a great time and still chatting away and then tomorrow there’s inside Phorest. It will be great and I’m just really, really grateful for Sinead’s work, Alex’s work, Aoife’s work throughout the whole year to put together this event. It’s been absolutely amazing.

Killian Vigna: And it’s getting bigger and bigger every year. We saw it today, the Convention Center in Dublin was lit up in purple. We didn’t get a photo of it but we have the screenshot, someone took a picture of it, put it on Instagram. The Dublin Convention Center in purple.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Brilliant, brilliant. So listen, we’ll leave you on that this week and we’ll catch you next week with an interview with MJ Deziel who is a hairstylist and she talks about her business model which is quite different as well.

Killian Vigna: Very different, definitely worth listening to, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So we’ll catch you next week guys.

Killian Vigna: All the best.

Thanks for reading!


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Note: Phorest FM is designed to be heard, not read. We encourage you to listen to the audio, which includes emotion which may not translate itself on the page. Podcast transcription by Rev.com