Who is my Back-up Plan?
For those working in a large salon with several nail professionals, if life hits you with an emergency your clients can be divided amongst your co-workers. That is not ideal and in theory they all miss you and come back as soon as the health crisis or whatever it is that took you away from them has passed. Many nail professionals out there are the only person in the salon doing nails, who is going to pitch in if life goes sideways?
This is where either friends or networking are going to play very important roles in your professional life. As much as some tend to think salons are competition when they are in the same town, this should not be the case. Chances are good there are enough people in town to go around in addition to the fact that everyone likes different things.
Every salon professional has different skills and a different personality to offer. This means even if you ended up taking the same classes and having the same education as someone else, your personalities would still be different. The same is also true flipped around, if you happen to have extremely similar personalities, chances are good your nail skills are different. Clients are drawn not only to your nail skills, they are also drawn to who you are as a person. Case in point, ask any nail professional that still has some clients from when they first started doing nails, they will tell you those clients didn't stick around when they were fresh out of school because they did the best nails in town!
If you do not have a nail BFF that could come in on their day off and cover some of your clients in an emergency, it is time to start thinking about networking with someone in your town or area. I work in a salon of a town of 11,000 people and have a nail professional that I have networked with for years. We trade services and I send her my clients if I have extended travel when I'm teaching (pre-COVID), or if I have a client that just isn't fitting my schedule and I know they would be a better fit I send them over. When I have had to be out of the salon for 6-8 weeks at a time due to surgery, my clients that can't wait that long filter into her schedule.
Some of you are thinking, there's no one in my area I trust like that. Have you offered to take them to a class with you? Asked if they would be interested in doing some learning together for the purpose of being each other's back up? Approach it with a professional and respectful attitude and you could be surprised at the response you get. There are those out there that feel they know everything and you are not going to change that, there are also those out there that just have a different perspective and it's not wrong just different. If the two of you took a class together you might find common ground and be able to build from there. As long as you share the same disinfection principles and fact based science of nails, brands don't matter.
In a perfect world we will all be healthy all the time, no one would get cancer, need surgery, break an arm or flip a vehicle and need help. In the real world it pays to understand that the nail community is a big family even within our actual communities and that we should respect and nurture it as such so that we can have each others back when needed.