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Does Your Small Business Have a Grooming Policy?


They say that image is everything and some of us have seen it all. Have you ever went into a store and just could not believe what you were seeing behind the counter? Is that a real human? Without trying to make the world into a civilization like the "Borg" there are a few things you need to think about in your small business. You need a grooming policy; one, which allows for individualism to a point but conveys confidence to the consumer.

Obviously if you run certain types of businesses such as; a head shop, tattoo parlor, a funky novelties retail store, new age spirituality store, adult book store, alternative music shop or cyber café; then grooming policy is not as critical. As a matter of fact the more unique the grooming from mainstream the better following of clientele you will have. For the rest of it is different.

All employees and crewmembers must be well groomed. Shirts should be tucked in. Men should be clean-shaven. Facial hair is ok but beards must be trimmed and mustaches should be well kept. We don't want anyone looking like Charlie Manson or Adolf Hitler. Everyone should like they have just left ettiqutte school for girls or graduated from the boy scout. Well, let's not take this too far, however we as business people must be thinking here to insure repeat customers and lots of referral business. So, hair should be brushed and controlled even on windy days or wear a hat; not just any hat, a company logo'ed hat. In the summer most workers cut their hair to stay cool and keep perspiration out of their eyes. If you are an outdoor service company like ours, we run a car wash, then we recommend sweat bands if this continues to be a problem (company colors, of course). Additionally in our company we go so far as to instruct workers to be careful not to wipe their face after handling tire dressing because your hands will have black on them and you will eventually get stains all over your head band and in your eyes. Each company has a different set of things to think of. Food vendors have other issues, clothing stores others; every business is different and your grooming policy needs to be cognizant of how you business differs from others and what type of policy is safe and smart for you.

All workers should shower each morning before work. This keeps them smelling nice; body odor can be a real turn off to customers and kill a sale faster than anything else. If a crewmember perspires a lot, that worker should bring an extra towel and shirt if they work outside. Politely suggesting body deodorant may not be such a bad idea either to help you from losing sales.

In the car wash business we must be concerned that a worker should not use car wash towels to wipe sweat off their face and body. The towels will dry out and someone else will accidentally pick up that towel and use it for windows or wax and smear dried sweat all over a black Mercedes. If your company works out doors on humid days; the heavily perspiring worker should change in to their new second company shirt at 2:00 pm after wiping off with the towel they brought.

Extra deodorant, preferably roll-on with a cap that fits snug, can be kept in the break room with the employees name on it. If you work outside with a work crew out of a work truck, keep it behind the seat, rather than in the glove box. Roll-on left in the glove box on hot days will heat up and leak. The best thing to use is baking soda. If you rub a little under your arms, it will absorb sweat for hours.

What ever grooming and personal hygiene policy you have must fit your individual small business, do not simply adopt another businesses policies, make your own and think about it.

"Lance Winslow" - If you have innovative thoughts and unique perspectives, come think with Lance; www.WorldThinkTank.net/wttbbs


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