Monday, March 23, 2009

Membership Has Its Privileges . . .

So we're contemplating a new membership program to focus the love on on our most loyal guests. We'd love feedback - please let us know what you think by taking a few minutes to take our online survey.

Monday, March 16, 2009

How Launching Another Parlor is like Having Another Child

Day four of our new parlor, and as I drive across the 520 bridge, I ponder all the ways in which being a mom has prepared me for being a better business leader. (Now that I'm driving across 520 a lot, you may see more postings as I have MUCH more time to contemplate the state of the economy, Julep, and the license plate in front of me).

So here are the top ten ways in which launching another new parlor is like having another new baby:

10. You take WAY less pictures of the last parlor/child because, afterall, you ARE BUSIER this time around.

9. Just when it's too late to turn back, you begin to question your sanity and your ability to take on ONE MORE THING without losing your already tenuous grip on reality.

8. Each parlor / child comes with its own unique, unanticipated challenges that you have to learn, figure out, and create an action plan around.

7. But you love each parlor/child equally for its unique qualities.

6. You're not as nervous that you will be a complete failure because, after all, you and your partner(s) have done this before.

5. "But OMG what if the other time(s) were a fluke and this is different?" you wake up wondering, heart racing.

4. It takes a bigger village with each additional parlor/child. No one can do it alone.

3. You sweat less about the details (no retail display, diaper rash) and are able to focus more on the bigger picture (is everybody alive and breathing?).

2. You start living at Top Pot Doughnuts and gain weight much earlier in the process.

1. You drink more with each additional parlor launch / pregnancy.

Friday, March 13, 2009

"Sneak Preview" Day at Bellevue!

Sneak Preview day - here we are before the crowds arrive . . .

And then there was a line out the door!
We had an amazingly fun day introducing ourselves to our new guests and introducing our loyal guests from other parlors to our new Bellevue parlor.
THANK YOU to everyone who helped us celebrate our Sneak Preview! And thank you to the amazing Bellevue team, and others who joined us all day long to help us out (especially Erica, Susie and Jfed!). And Amy and Lisa, who have been with me through all four parlor openings.
I couldn't have imagined a more perfect opening day for our new parlor.

And at the end of a long day, here are Katie and Jennifer closing down the registers before they head home.
I myself went to bed right after reading to my kids - at 8:30! That might even be earlier than our early to bed, early to rise District Manager Amy Fritz!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Free Manicures at New Bellevue Parlor 3/12

So now the sign is up! Join us at our new Bellevue parlor for free manicures, express facials, eyebrow shaping and neck massage next Thursday March 12!

I'm not sure where January and February went - I can't believe it's already March and we're opening next week!

One Week Before Opening Day!

We met at 10am on Friday at our Support Center offices in Queen Anne to take all the "shopping" we've done to date over to our new Bellevue Parlor!

Here's our buff District Manager Amy and our new Bellevue Parlor Manager Katie loading up the van!

And Susie, and Lisa, and Amy, and Erica, and Tyson too. (THANK YOU!).

With everyone pitching in, it took no time at all. Now our Bellevue parlor has hot towel warmers, guest chairs, one vernisseur stool and one esthetician stool, verniseur baskets, moisturizers, hot water dispenser, hole punch, coffee table, flat screen TV, POS terminals at the front, and a partridge in a pear tree. On Sunday Kate, Ripley and I will be delivering the final pieces of furniture to Bellevue. Our final building inspection is on Monday, and, our phones arrive on Tuesday, and our final Board of Health inspection is on Wednesday. Then we're excited to swing our doors open to our first guests on Thursday!

8 Days Before Bellevue Opening

Of course, it's pouring rain the day we decide to put up our temporary banner - but there it is! Now we're opening on March 13th (and no, you're not the first one to notice that it's a Friday the 13th - but thanks for worrying on our behalf). Thank you Mitch and Darryl for climbing up on the roof. And as part of the more glamorous part of her role, Kate had to run out this morning to buy bricks to weigh down the bottom of the sign.
Thanks the Tait (who I somtimes call Darren, because of my early onset Alzeimers) of Seattle Computing and his brilliant colleagues, our 54 inch flat screen can play Wonder Woman (as promised for our March Chick Flick Thursdays), and we have an internal and external network connection stuff going on (to use the technical terms). We'll be able to check in our guests and they'll be able to connect to our WiFi network and email from their pedicures - if they choose to that instead of dozing off after a glass of wine (licnese still pending!) and a neck massage.

Jennifer and Chris - we LOVE the gi-normous walnut ledge behind the front desk. And Chris - you are a genius because Darryl was worried about how it would mount - but of course you had thought of that already.

Katie and I put up the FREE MANICURES sign this morning - and our love affair with our Studio SC gang deepens with each project - even 2 hour turnaround ones where we don't give you basic information like dimensions. Thank you Alli and JJ!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

To extend or not to extend Staycation?

Of course, the answer is to extend! Through May 28, to be exact.

Because our guests have DEMANDED it (some gently, some not so gently).

And, to be honest, it's one of the few promotions we've offered that is beloved by guests, verniessuers, managers, and parlor hostesses. Usually there's at least SOMETHING a little askew . . .

I think it helped that we sent out a Survey Monkey to our team to ask for input in advance - troubleshooting potential issues before they happened.

And it also helps that it's a fun idea - I LOVE seeing women with lovely hands and toes sip their umbrella drinks.

The benefit of being a small start-up is that we can make these responsive decisions on the fly - we are not locked into a a two year marketing calendar (after we build one, then we'll figure out how locked into it we need to be!).

So for now, we're Staycationing away.