I call the client and say to either him/her or the voicemail: "Jane" you were supposed to have an appointment with me at 3. I hope you're OK. (wait for response)
Well, don't worry Jane, since this is the first time this happens I am going to wave the $20 no show fee. Just remember when you reschedule, we have a 24 hour cancellation policy.
My major problem with this situation is I'm a booth renter, and I don't have a receptionist to run interference between myself and the client. So what I decided to do is definitely charge a service charge, because I'm not talking about a situation that happens with the occasional haircut, but the big ticket client who is nailing you at the last minute for a few hundred bucks, and has done it more than once. And I'm going to send that client a polite postcard right after it happens, sayings due to and increase in business costs I'm forced to charge a service charge when I don't get a 24 hour cancelation notice, and it will be X amount. This way it won't be a surprise when I ring up your bill next time. That way, they know I don't appreciate their behavior, and they have an opportunity to change it or not to come back. If they do come back, here's the price. Do again, and you'll lose your hairdresser. For the most part, I really love what I do. But this is the part I really hate. Thanks everybody for your imput. It's been really helpful.
That's essentially what I do, also am a booth renter, however, if you don't have anything posted, I wouldn't charge this particular client. You have to post your policies, either in your station, or by sending everyone a postcard announcing the policy changes.I might have misunderstood you, though, so if I did just ignore me!
But definitely, you have to put some sort of policy in place about no shows. I usually don't charge people as long as they call, even if it's less than 24 hours (though 24 hrs is my policy, so I can if I think the excuse is BS) but to just not call is so rude. Definitely start doing confirmation calls and/or emails 1-2 days prior to the appt. though, that can really help. I'm always amazed how many people go 'oh, yeah, can we reschedule that?'
Of course, as a proffessional you would use common sense with the individual situation. You have every right to establish your own rules of business. Verbal or in writing. I personally don't have it in writing, but when a client is new, after repeating the day and time of client's next apptmnt, I will say "we have a 24 hr cancellation policy."
And of course we are reasonable here. Sometimes a client will have and emergency. No big deal long as they don't have a "HABIT" of last minute cancellations...
I have never charged a client at 1st offense. In fact, the warning usually fixes the problem. You are getting their attention and acting as if you were doing them a favor by waving the fee. Which they will NOW take seriously. I've been in business for myself for 6 yrs now, and may have had to charge repeat offenders, maybe 3 times. And now that I think of it, all 3 are still with me. They actually respect you more when you value yourself and your time, long as you are being reasonable, proffessional and respectful. Deep down they also know that they were WRONG.
My clients only have one chance to do a "no-show" and after that it's a wrap. If they do it again they have a hard time, or can no-longer get on my books(depending on my mood). 24 hour cancellation policies are Bull-SH**. After the first time, that's it. Don't do it again. I am very strict with my clients as far as no-shows and cancellations. The key is to talk to the clients and let them know that when they do these things, "you are losing money b-cuz another client had wanted to come in at that time" and you "had to tell them no" or you "sent them to another stylist." Of course, in cases of true emergencies, I do understand. If you let them get away with it more than once, they won't respect your time or your money. I think that some stylists are scared to put their foot down b-cuz they fear losing a client. Well, I'm trying to give my headache clients away...and they won't leave(LOL). The 1 thing I always say is "don't mess with my $money$".
Your right CJ, most of us don't have time to remind our clients of their appointments, but that's when it's time to get creative. I have a friend and a relative to whom I give deeply discounted and sometimes free services. In exchange they call my clients to remind them of their appt.s. Some clients do lead busy or hectic lives and they do forget, esp. when booking services several weeks in advance. I work Wed. thru Sun, throwing in an ocassional Mon or Tues. On Wednesdays, my Thurs. thru Sat. appointments are called, and on Fridays, my Sun. thru Wed appointments are called. We all have fam/friends who want to see our business grow and are more than likely willing to help if you ask.
Missed appointments cost your business time and money as well as generate stress which you just don’t need. Phoning up clients is definitely one way of jogging their memory but how about a automatic text message/email which is sent out to clients? Or a pa who can answer your calls for you when your with a client? Business Applications: CRM, map my day, SMS/E-mail tasks and reminders and on-line diaryTelecoms: VOIP and automated messagingPA Services: Call answering and virtual Personal Assistant servicesIf you think any of these services are helpful or you just want help with running your business then get in touch. I look forward to hearing from you!
Missed appointments cost your business time and money as well as generate stress which you just don’t need. Phoning up clients is definitely one way of jogging their memory but how about a automatic text message/email which is sent out to clients? Or a pa who can answer your calls for you when your with a client?
Business Applications: CRM, map my day, SMS/E-mail tasks and reminders and on-line diary
Telecoms: VOIP and automated messaging
PA Services: Call answering and virtual Personal Assistant services
If you think any of these services are helpful or you just want help with running your business then get in touch. I look forward to hearing from you!
If you need business solutions for your salon why not visit www.icomplete.com for more info
Last Saturday I had a new client came into our salon. My new stylist did her hair. The client wanted 2 tone highlights and a haircut. The consultation was very good. Her work was looking great. After the service was completed and monies was being paid, I asked the client how she liked her hair. Her response was that "she loved her hair." Wonderful, I thought. Tuesday morning at 11am I received a phone call asking for the owner/manager. It was the new client from Saturday screaming at me. She hated her hair. She had been at the emergency room all day on Monday from anxiety and stress over from her haircut. I was to give her back her money asap or she was going to report me to state board, sue and shut me down cuz I didn't know who I was messing with. After trying to talk with this client I agreed to refund her for the hair services only which she paid with a credit card. Thusday morning this client called back screaming at one of my other stylist bad naming, threatening and harrasing me and everyone in the shop. Her bank had told her that it only takes 2 days for a refund to take place and that I was a lair for not keeping my word. Well it had only been barely the 2 days. After 3 nasty phone calls we let it go to voicemail. I called my credit card merchant and was told that her money went back to her bank on Tuesday afternoon. It was her bank holding the monies. What A horrible week. Would you have given back her money?
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