Death of a Hair Stylist: Lessons on Service

I used to get a lot of mediocre haircuts that cost $25 + tip. $25 haircuts are an interesting price point in that you typically get a much better haircut than the cheapest places (you’re not going to look funny) but they’re nowhere near a good salon haircut. It’s not going to be inspired – in my experience it will be predictably mediocre.

About two years ago, my boss referred me to April.

Photo: Jon Snyder/

April was a pretty revolutionary hairstylist for me because she she took my vague idea, then made it sweet. She didn’t just cut it short, she used the razor for texture. She gave suggestions for how to make the transitions look more natural.

In short, she helped create a haircut that met my goals, but was a notch above what I could have thought up myself. That’s what truly made the difference.

It really taught me a lot about service. Instead of being an order taker, April used her experience to improve my ideas. She took detailed notes in their system so she could deliver a consistently great haircut each time. The thought of getting a haircut no longer induced stress and anxiety – I knew it was going to be good.

I learned that if you want to excel at service, you have to follow directions while taking things to a higher level. That’s whats going to make someone else plan their schedule around you, and tell their friends. That’s what’s going to get blog posts written about you.

April got a new job teaching at cosmetology school, so she no longer cuts my hair. Today I got a pretty good haircut (thanks to the notes she left in the system), but it just wasn’t the same.

One thought to “Death of a Hair Stylist: Lessons on Service”

  1. I didn’t know you had a blog Jason! I really enjoyed reading a few of these posts! You write well, and are dealing with subjects that I also need help with…like time management. :)

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