The way we work – Colin McAndrew of Medusa Hairdressing

by | Feb 3, 2023 | Business, People

Colin McAndrew of Medusa Hairdressing shares invaluable insight on how he manages business in 2023

Colin McAndrew

“I’m the owner/ MD/ head janitor, and motivator of Medusa Hairdressing. We consist of six salons across Edinburgh, with a wonderful team of around 80 creative talents. 

Our business model is really simple at the moment; we are what I call a ‘branchising’ model. Essentially the owners of the salon and I are partners – so very different from a franchise model – because if the salon doesn’t make any profit I don’t get any reward.  So I am extremely keen to work with the partners to make the best possible decisions for the whole group.

My own role is to try and take the stress away from the partners and allow them to be able to do what they are great at, which is running their own beautiful salon. I am responsible for all the supplier meetings, design, marketing, HR at head office, education plans and career developments for all the team. 

At Medusa, we always strive to be fair and consistent with the team. I very much want the team members to have a great reward and benefits for being part of the company. 

Over the last few years we have really implemented a lot of very progressive policies, such as financial planning, menopause education and systems, and also our much respected IVF support.

These have been really well received by the team, but in the nicest way I really hope they never need to access them. However, it feels good as an employer to know you have them in place.

Our focus over this next year is really about maximising our teams earning potential. We have a large middle section of our team that with just a few little changes in daily behaviour with clients will really transform their salaries. I feel that in this current climate it’s the way to focus this year for the own individual and as a group.


It’s always a priority to assess where are our team are individually at that current moment. With just a few increases or minor changes, we can see what extra that will bring them. It’s so important for the team to understand where they are starting from and also what a strong foundation they have to build from.

We are taking a very unique approach to this and have explained that this journey is blame free. All we are going to do is encourage their own potential – the financial rewards are there to be seen! I believe they can create a fantastic lifestyle from what we are introducing.  I’m really buzzing abut this project and looking forward to seeing where it takes the team.

Over my 16 years as MD of Medusa I’ve learnt that what motivates me isn’t the same for everyone else. However, I think universally everyone wants the biggest take home pay them can achieve; sometimes we can lose focus on that with all the warm fuzzy stuff. We have to work really hard for our teams so that they know they are respected, cared for and appreciated. 

This year looks like another permacrisis with the energy crisis, Covid hangover and a recession. My advice to anyone reading this is remember why you started in business in the first place, then now look at it and see if you need to rethink. Imagine your business was opening up today for the first time, what would it have to look like? I can guarantee it looks a hell of a lot different fro, a salon opening up five or 10 years ago. Reimagine your business, refocus and re-energise yourself. You are your biggest asset, so use it!” 

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