How we work now – Siobhan Jones, Rose & Wild

Little Mix love her colour skills – now Siobhan Jones is winning new fans in the hair community with her hub for independent stylists. As part of our How We Work Now special, she explains her concept

I launched the Rose & Wild concept because we wanted to have the best in the business working with us. I had also been in multiple conversations with colourists and stylists and they had been quite clear on the reasons for leaving previous jobs… and even why they had left the industry entirely.

They were not only looking for the opportunity to have a varied career, but also looking for flexibility and more social working hours, which is understandable. I always strive for a good work life balance these days and I know I’m not alone in this.

The majority of our team is part time so it means they have other strings to their bows, which raises the level. There are also great financial benefits to be had for the salon and stylists as we are able to utilise the time each stylist is in effectively. A stylist that has chosen their hours is definitely more likely to want to be there, and they are more pro-active and happy when they are there.

The pitfalls will be management of it all! Ensuring you have people that can work the hours necessary to keep the salon running. You’ll always need more stylists than you have chairs, which means more payment management, more rotas and generally more organisation.

Also, by offering self-employed, you have to allow flexibility. If someone decides they don’t want to come in its ultimately their decision, so you need to be open to that idea. Preparing a good format of how this will be managed is necessary beforehand.

Personally I think it will need to happen this way or we will just see a rise of colourists and stylists wanting to work from home. If you can be a salon that will offers the positive points of hairdressing with flexibility and a fair working pattern that encourages work/life balance, it will be a more desirable option for hairdressers. By doing this you will still be able to provide a salon family environment, already set up to look after clients and you can take the pressure off the stylist in terms of gaining all the clients themselves.

Stylists love the hairdressing community and that would be why most of us got into it in the first place, but the idea of unsocial hours and restrictive working patterns is becoming less appealing.

I think people still want to be educated and I don’t think just because someone is self-employed they shouldn’t be offered the option of more education. It’s just our way of thinking and the structure of it all that will need to change. I’m into knowledge sharing, so if a stylist feels they’re gaining something from sharing their knowledge, then it will happen.

We have to bear in mind that social media has meant that most stylists/ colourists are connected to their clients more than ever, so if they decide to leave, the clients are more likely to follow than they would have been in previous years. The only control we have as salon owners is supplying a fair and flexible working environment that people/stylists just don’t want to leave.

I love the idea of being part of a team but not in sacrifice for fair pay and a great work/life balance. If you could have it all, you would be living the dream. We should all strive for that!