Married couple navigates different work styles to grow their salon business

By Beth Caron

Over the years, this blog has featured several Great Clips franchisees who operate their businesses in partnership with their spouse. For many, this arrangement allows each to take on a specific aspect of running their walk-in hair salons, by focusing on the part of the business that leverages each partner’s specific skills. That’s what the McDoles have found as they use their individual strengths to make their business—and their relationship—stronger.

Engineering the numbers

Great Clips franchisees Deanna and Randy McDole have a partnership that suits their marriage and their business.

“He manages the money, and I manage the salons,” Deanna says.

“I’m not allowed to talk to the people,” says Randy, with a chuckle.

Randy has an engineering background, while Deanna’s is in retail sales. Their diverse backgrounds allow them to complement each other’s skills and work as a team in running their walk-in hair salons.

Randy and Deanna opened their first two salons in the Washington, D.C. market within three weeks of one another in July 2015. They’ve added 6 more since then. Randy believes strongly that studying the numbers—much of it business data provided by the franchisor, Great Clips, Inc.—can help them grow the business.

The cornerstone of this data is something Great Clips calls its Brand Measures—proven ways of doing business that contribute to profitable salons. The most successful Great Clips salon owners use these measures to evaluate the performance of their salons, and then work with their teams to reinforce what’s working and redirect what’s not.

“The lesson we’ve learned,” says Randy, “is we have to have the numbers right.”

Deanna appreciates the value of studying the metrics, but she also believes, “You can’t just operate on numbers. It’s also about focusing on people. So much of our success comes from our salon teams.”

These two distinct management styles are one reason the McDoles only talk about salon numbers at home on Saturday mornings, even though Randy combs through them daily.

“I wanted to talk numbers every day, and it was driving Deanna crazy!” Randy acknowledges.

Balancing the books with a focus on people

Deanna concurs that the numbers are important, “and I’m glad Randy is around to interpret what they mean for our financial bottom line. But we also believe that people are critical to what we do. We are here not just to make money for ourselves, but also to provide opportunities for others in our organization.

“I tell the staff, ‘If you want to be part of something bigger than yourself, then we’re the right place for you to work.’”

Randy agrees that a focus on the numbers is for a greater purpose. “We’re not here to be average. We’re here to create opportunities for people. We do that by building an organization that’s the best.”

So many franchisees like Deanna and Randy say one of the biggest reasons they chose Great Clips was because of the support provided by the corporate office. (Yes, that includes all the data that Randy scours EVERY DAY!) Want to know more? Give me a call. I’d love to answer your questions.

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