Ken’s Clinic

Ken’s diagnosis:

As part of the culture of 3•6•5 we have a code of behaviour called Guidelines to Greatness. One of these is “Find out what people want and help them to achieve it.” We also believe in balance and that “what works for both will last, and what works for one will end as soon as there is a viable alternative.”

I understand that as a young person with long-term goals, these may not involve your current salon or current employer, but sharing these goals should not necessarily affect your current position. Okay, if someone came and told me that they planned to move to Australia in three months’ time, I might be reticent to invest in an expensive course. But if a stylist shared that their long-term goal was to have their own salon, I would think about how this passion could be harnessed to benefit us both while that stylist was part of my team.
I would also think how this passion could be part of my own long-term vision to grow my brand with the best possible people. A salon has to be owned or managed by people with a similar set of ideals and a desire for success. As I said earlier, if part of my role as a salon owner is to “find out what people want and help them to achieve it”, why can’t this be done together? I remember the mistakes I made as a young salon owner and wish I could have found the right mentor to work with.

Often people want to take a more creative path and get involved with session work or platform work. Again, this passion can be used to benefit any salon. Imagery is an important part of marketing for any salon and imagery produced ‘in house’ says far more about the creativity of a salon than library or manufacturer supplied imagery. Talking of manufacturers, most of them have art teams nowadays. These can be used to promote brands at events such as trade shows, or to promote brands in salons. If you get involved with high-quality brands, for example one of the brands that my own company distributes is Paul Mitchell, it is often looking for talented, creative people, and provides education and opportunities to benefit both parties. The only thing I would add is that stylists often love to be involved with this type of work because it can be fun and exciting. However, at the end of the day, such involvement must be used to benefit and grow their own columns, to educate and grow their salon colleagues and to enhance the marketing of the salon in which they work. Share your dreams and goals, often they can become the dreams and goals of others. Together everyone achieves more.

Ken West is director of business experts 3•6•5 – email him on


Ken West