The medical aesthetic industry is a fickle and fast-paced one. Every week there is a new trend and it can be hard to keep up with those trends. I have experienced so many situations in training where I encounter staff and business owners who have lost their way. Most therapists lack the confidence to tackle difficult cases and business owners don’t know where to start with everything they have on their plate.
Self-confidence is built over time. It is something that is gained not only with experience but also through overcoming hardship and different types of obstacles. As an employee and a business owner, certain experiences can cause us to lack confidence in our abilities. It could be a client that only saw us once and never came back, it could be a bad customer review, dwindling sales figures or losing a loyal client to the clinic or doctor down the road. This is the first post in a three-part series on how to master the 3 key characteristics of a successful skin care professional in the medical aesthetic industry. Those 3 traits are confidence, knowledge and consistency. Once you have mastered those, your retail sales will improve, your clients will be more loyal and you will be able to grow your business successfully.
Let us look at the 5 key steps needed to overcoming those obstacles, and gaining our confidence back.
- Know what you don’t know.
We need to establish where our strengths and weaknesses lie. As therapists, the biggest area in which we struggle seems to be hitting the retail sales we want. Being able to retail skin care depends on how knowledgeable you are. Your client has access to so much information online that she needs to hear information from you that she cannot access by googling it. She needs to understand how her skin and health is unique and how you can tailor a plan suited specifically to suit her budget and her time constraints. As a business owner, we often struggle to get the results from our staff that we need. We are often not confident in our ability to lead well without coming across as being a drill sergeant. It could be the other way around and we can lack confidence in exerting authority. Understanding your weaknesses is the first step.
2. Practice makes perfect
Seek out opportunities to learn as much as you can from your clients and patients. The only way we improve our mistakes is by getting honest feedback. Practice the treatments and procedures you love doing and those that you don’t. The touch of experience cannot be faked. The more we expose ourselves to something that scares or intimidates us the more we get used to being out of our comfort zones. Allow your clients and patients to see the real you, this helps them to identify with who you are and what sets you as the therapist or business owner apart from the rest. People respond to a living breathing personality, not to a perfect Instagram feed. Sometimes that requires of us to do something that scares us. Every time you do it, it becomes less scary.
- Pick up new skills
Learning a new skill can give you tons of confidence you did not have before. As an employee, it will give you the competitive advantage above your fellow colleagues and it will also increase your worth. Employers are looking for employees that are jacks of all trades. Having a Unique skill or knowledge on a particular topic will set you apart from everyone else. As a business owner, you should seek out every opportunity to learn new skills. This industry moves at lightning speed, and when all your competitors are doing the same products and procedures that you are doing, it’s important to find a way to set yourself apart. Remember your patients and clients love information and they want to learn. Every opportunity is a teaching opportunity and your clients are looking for the X-factor that sets you apart.
- Celebrate small victories
In a Competitive and ever changing world, we can forget to celebrate the small victories. Every step forward is a step in the right direction. As a business owner, we often become overwhelmed with running every aspect of our business. You have to see clients, manage staff, market your business and attend training and it can sometimes become extremely overwhelming. Make sure to reflect monthly on the progress you made in certain areas. Set new targets for yourself every month. Some of them should be aimed at improving the profitability of your business, but some of them need to be aimed at overcoming a fear, eliminating procrastination or tackling a difficult task. As an employee achieving great service records and retail sales is a tangible way of improving every day. Life is too short to live small, we are capable of so much more than we can dream of. All it takes is a belief in yourself.
- Be an ambassador
We work in a very superficial world where we are judged on our own appearance. Having a great skin and being groomed is of utmost importance. It is very difficult to convince someone that you can treat their acne or hyper pigmentation if you struggle with a problematic skin yourself. If the products and procedures that you stock cannot improve your own skin, why should your client believe it can improve her skin. Make sure you test and trial everything on yourself, so that you can speak to your client or patient from a place of authority. If you are unsure of how to treat your skin, talk to someone that can help you.
Confidence is something that can be cultivated, but only by exposing yourself to new and exciting opportunities! In our next blog post, we will discuss the importance of being knowledgeable.