When I'm training or coaching a fellow stylist the #1 thing I always emphasize is how important the consultation is.
A bad consultation can have your client in tears or you in a situation you'd be praying to get out of.
So as stylists we MUST be extremely thorough during our consultation.
Here's some questions you have to ask:
1. How much time do you spend on your hair in the morning? – Your client may be asking for a style that's “high maintenance”, and if they're not use to spending a little more time on their hair in the morning, you could end up being the blame for that.
2. What do you do for a living? – Believe it or not this is very important. If your client is in the military she may have to wear her hair either up in a bun or above her collar. What you'd take away from that is her hair needs to be shorter or healthy since it's going to be constantly pulled up every day.
3. Do you go to the gym? – Going to the gym instantly makes hair high maintenance because you sweat, and a lot of times sweat makes the hair stink. So, hair sometimes needs to be co-washed more often than not. Knowing this is important because you may need to introduce your client to a different regime or new products.
4. What is your current hair regime at home? – Do they take care of their hair at home? Some clients do and some simply don't. Those that do you just want to be sure you guys are using the same type of products and the ones that don't need to be educated.
5. What is your biggest challenge with your hair? – Talking to your client about this will help you suit her needs without playing the guessing game.
6. What is your ultimate goal for your hair? – This one is self explanatory, but very necessary and often neglected. You have to know what you're trying to get to when you're working with a client. It's very important.
I've seen it time and time again where a client will sit in my chair after having hopped from salon to salon talking bad about the stylist when at the end of the day it wasn't the stylist it was a communication gap!
Now, if you're the client don't sit there and not communicate with the stylst, they cannot figure out what you want, you have to speak up.
Remember… Communication is key.