It’s inevitable. At some point in your career as a wellness provider, you will have to stick up for yourself.
Although these occurrences are unfortunate, there will likely be a time when customers or even staff will challenge you. So you’ll have to be ready to stick up for yourself and your business.
The COVID19 pandemic and current economic downfall are likely to bring this about now more than ever. Unfortunately, you will encounter situations where people are asking more than you are willing to give.
Get ready to learn how to effectively stick up for yourself with these tips:
Put It In Writing
Society makes rules to protect its members. Just as you must establish regulations to protect yourself, your business, and possibly your staff.
If you don’t have rules and procedures in writing, then it will be incredibly hard to re-enforce them. Creating visible policies & procedures is the best route.
Post The Rules
Make sure the rules are posted where your customers and staff can see them regularly.
This could mean including them in a procedure manual, your website, emails, or pinned to a visible cork-board. As long as your employees and clients are able to see the rules, there’s no reason why they shouldn’t follow them.
Create an Education Opportunity
Make sure that you educate your clients and staff on the rules.
For instance, a great time to mention your most important rules is when you confirm a new client’s appointment. This will probably include your cancelation policy and any other health and safety procedures they need to know about.
As for staff, having an on-boarding training can be vital to making sure that they know your expectations. You may also want to instate regular training sessions once or twice a year to re-enforce relevant procedures amongst your staff.
Take Time for Requests
Some clients might ask for special discounts for their unique situation. Or they could ask you to bend a rule for them.
Whatever they ask, you do not have to give them an answer immediately!
It’s absolutely okay to take a night or two to consider if accommodating them is in your business’s best interest. Taking time to crunch the numbers or getting input from others is okay.
If a request does not work for you, you can take time to figure out what you can offer to make your client or employee happy. Try to answer the request in 2 business days at most.
How To Say No
Sometimes the request is just not going to work for you and your business, and you have to say “no.”
But sometimes, you can soften that “no,” by giving your clients a “yes” to something else.
For instance, you tell a client, “No, you can not combine a 10% discount and a 15% discount for a total of 25% off”. But the”yes” could be that they can have the 15% discount instead of just 10%.
Sometimes “no” can mean postponing the decision. For instance, you can say “no” to buying something your staff requested this month but “yes” to the requests when funds are available.
If you are postponing a “yes”, make sure you continually communicate your timeline to the person who made the request.
Firing Clients or Staff
Unfortunately, sometimes saying no actually means removing a client or staff member from your business. Sometimes the decision to fire someone is easy to make because they really broke the rules.
However, clients or staff will sometimes nudge the boundaries without actually breaking the rules. And this can make it challenging to confirm misbehavior.
For instance, clients that want sexual services do not often ask out-right. They use code words or borderline bad behavior to suggest the unlawful services they desire.
In these cases, you must search your feelings. If a client or staff member is continually making you uncomfortable, it’s time to stick up for yourself and your business.
If you believe that you will need to get rid of a client or staff member, then it’s time to get your ducks in a row by putting it in writing!
Make sure to document the details of who, what, and when. Create a solid timeline of misconduct. For instance, if you need to fire a staff member for consistent lateness, then you should document.
Don’t just record the days and times they were tardy. Be sure to also include discussions or emails you had with them about their tardiness.
Sticking up for yourself can be hard work. So it’s vital to create a community that can support you.
It’s essential to have colleagues to talk to about what you are going through. If you’re looking for such a community, feel free to check out Start Massage Biz’s Facebook group.
In some cases, you may even want to consult with a lawyer before removing a client or employee. Look for lawyers who can provide a free consultation or a small fee for their advice. If you have larger organization, you may even consider having a lawyer on retainer for their continued support.