For this month's Members Spotlight we travel to picturesque Poynton in Cheshire, to showcase Serenity Health & Beauty and its owner Nichola Wilkson.
Nichola founded Serenity in 2001, hoping to bring a true spa experience to a high-street location with treatments, products and expert therapists that would put Poynton on the spa destination map. Twenty years later (and counting!) that dream is a living reality. With a team of award-winning beauty therapists, skin experts, lash and nail specialists, make-up artists and a leading aesthetic nurse, Serenity offers a vast array of innovative treatments dedicated to wellbeing.
Being a long-standing, established business has its advantages, but it can also generate some issues in communication and time management due to processes and structures becoming stagnated over the years. This was one of the very first things we had to figure out and tackle after Nichola joined our monthly membership.
Firstly, together we worked on implementing procedures for stock management, whilst streamlining the treatment menu and ensuring the costs were reviewed where needed. Once we did that, Valerie coached the manager to re-define her role and to relieve Nichola of some of the operational side of the business. Next, we created individual development plans for each team member to focus on building a strong and positive retail culture, which had been continuously growing for the past few years.
After getting all of the processes and team in order, Valerie worked with Nichola to further develop her skills as an owner and leader, allowing her to identify and refresh her vision, which is often necessary for a long-standing business. Serenity achieved profits never seen before, while the revamped structure and systems allowed the business to function without Nichola's constant input. This allowed her to give the numbers extra attention, but also use her wonderful creative spark to find new and innovative ways to attract new clients.
You can read the full Q&A with Nichola below:
The best piece of business advice you've ever received that you'd share with another salon owner?
Working to a budget so you know each month exactly what you have coming in vs. what's going out. It really helps you feel more in control and therefore gives you an opportunity to re-invest.
If you could go back and change anything or give your younger self some guidance for your business journey, what would it be?
To definitely have my SOP manual in place from the start. Plus, to try and take a step back from the business earlier than I did for the first time. This really gives you opportunity to work and grow the business in the direction you want it to, whilst helping to encourage your senior team to develop.
Your favourite thing about being a business owner?
Watching staff grow and develop. Being able to research and offer the best possible treatments. And of course, having that flexibility with my working hours
And what do you find most challenging - and how you overcome it?
Staff is by far the most Challenging, I continually invest in staff development and training. We now have a Staff Wellness Formula in place to encourage my staff to feel valued at Serenity.
Someone or another brand or business in the industry who inspires you and why?
Valerie! Working with Valerie is by far the best decision I've made. Valerie has provided me with essential tools and helped to put valuable procedures in place: from stock control and SOP manual to understanding the importance of excellent management & a strong reception team. This now allows me to work on the business rather than in it, which is where I want to be.
What you love about being a Delforge Member, would you recommend us to other salon owners and why?
Valarie works with you to really understand your business and where you want to be, whilst helping you to understand and achieve you vision. She has a wealth of knowledge and is a great inspiration not only to myself but also my salon manager Kate. As a mentor, she will help you to keep focussed and plan for the future. We love working with Valerie and will for many years to come.
Photos by: Serenity Health & Beauty
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