Friday, March 1, 2013

Commission versus Hourly for Stylists

I had a great conversation today with a fellow salon owner about pay systems. His salon is commission-based; mine is team-based (hourly).
He explained his problem with TBP this way:
You've got thoroughbreds and you've got mares. Your thoroughbreds are going to get pissed off that the mares are getting what they are getting.
My response was that together we work toward common goals that create cash flow for the salon. Some of that cash flow is reinvested into the team based on individual contributions. In other words, the thoroughbreds get paid more than the mares. So I shared with him my problem with commission:
If everyone is getting 40% and you raise prices, the mare gets a raise he/she doesn't deserve.
He countered that the high performers have higher prices, therefore they are paid 40% of a bigger number. The lower performer will not get a price increase, therefore, lower pay.

(Forgive me for all the horse references...we are in Kentucky).

What we both agree on is that the culture of the salon makes all the difference. Even though a TBP fan like me may argue that when you based pay only on dollars produced, you sacrifice the ability to motivate people to do things not directly related to putting a butt in the seat (like cleaning, selling retail, following scripts, etc.), he will argue back that those things only happen if you fail as a leader and permit them to happen by accepting that behavior.

So choose for yourself, but know that no matter what pay system you choose, your salon cannot succeed without strong leadership.

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