27 Questions to Ask a Salon Owner - The Exquisite Find (2022)

At an interview or preparing for an interview, here are a few examples of what kinds of questions to ask a salon owner and why?

27 Questions to Ask a Salon Owner - The Exquisite Find (1)

5 W’s and an H

Who, what, where, when, why, and how questions to ask a salon owner.

‘Who’ Types of Questions to Ask a Salon Owner

What type of people does the owner look for in the hiring process? What kinds of qualities do they seek out in a person and why? A team player? A go-getter?

Perhaps the salon owner seeks out recently-graduated individuals who don’t have ‘bad salon habits’ from other salons. Or they could be looking for people who already have an established clientele?

How to Get Hair Clients Fast

Not only ‘Who’ do they seek to hire but ‘Who’ is this salon owner? Do they work behind the chair? Have they experienced customer service in the way that we do as barbers, cosmetologists, hairstylists, estheticians, massage therapists, and other beauty professionals? Or do they only run the administration side of the salon?

Feeling out ‘Who’ the owner is and what type of shop they run are good types of questions to ask a salon owner.

  • How long ago did you hire the last employee? Are they still at the salon?
  • What qualities do you look for when hiring new staff?
  • Do you have a Cosmetology or Barbering license and work behind the chair here?
  • What made you want to open a shop?
  • Is there a specific skill or specialty that you look for in new hires that I should be prepared to show you?

‘What’ Types of Questions to Ask a Salon Owner

The ‘What’ questions to ask a salon owner are the kinds that you ask about the business itself and their expectations for employees.

  • What are your goals for the salon? What is your vision for ‘X Salon Name’?
  • Do you have a specific kind of work ethic do you require your employees to have? Do they have set schedules or can they make their own schedule?
  • What kinds of expectations do you have for your employees? What standard that you hold them accountable to?

‘Where’ Types of Questions to Ask a Salon Owner

Where is the salon located? Can it be accessed easily by your clients? Is there adequate parking for both staff and guests?

Can the shop be seen by the street or do you have to go looking for it?

Clients will need to be able to come to you. Whether it’s on foot (like in the mall) or by car (driving directly to the shop front door). It’s important that the shop isn’t hidden away and hard to find because you may have a hard time building up a clientele if no one knows where the shop is.

The ‘Where’ questions are more for you to ask yourself than the owner but there are still a few questions to ask the salon owner about.

  • What do you like about this location?
  • Why did you choose this spot?
  • Do you have a lot of walk-in base here? Or is it mostly appointment only?
  • Are there other locations of this salon?

‘When’ Questions to Ask a Salon Owner

Asking ‘When’ questions are good for understanding details about the salon.

  • When did this shop open? Are you the first owner or did you take it over from someone else?
  • Do your employees get to have an opinion on their work schedules? How easy is it to request time off, or even specific days of the week off?
  • What holidays does the shop recognize and close for? Or are you open 365 days per year?

‘Why’ Questions to Ask a Salon Owner

The ‘Why’ types of questions to ask a salon owner are more about the salon’s policies and why they have put them in place. Most policies are good, but sometimes they can be a little far stretched.

For example, perhaps you aren’t allowed to take sick days unless you can find someone to fill your shift. Though it sounds reasonable for business, in a post-COVID world we really cannot go to work if we aren’t feeling well and we can’t schedule sick days in advance. So asking about their policies is important because you want to know the ‘Why’s before starting to work here.

Not many questions to ask a salon owner include the word ‘Why’ but it’s important to know why they answer they way that they do.

  • What are the shop’s policies for sick days? How do you handle a stylist’s full book when they are unable to make it to their shift due to illness or an emergency?
  • How does the shop handle client cancellations?
  • Are there policies about color appointment deposits? Does the shop require a consultation before booking a color or not?
  • What are the shop’s policies for re-dos? If a client doesn’t like their service how many days does the shop usually give them before offering either a refund or a correction? When refunded does it come out of the stylist’s paycheck?
  • If in the event that a client complains, how do you typically handle that situation? Does that happen very often?

Finally, the ‘How’ Questions to Ask a Salon Owner

How does all of the questions you have already asked come together? Are you starting to get a full picture of what it might be like to work at this salon?

The ‘How’ questions to ask a salon owner are the last details of the interview.

  • How do you plan to expand and grow the business further?
  • How does the shop handle co-worker conflict? Do we handle it ourselves or should we bring it to you first?
  • What kinds of continued-education does the shop offer? Are the stylists required to seek out their own continued-education themselves or do you offer classes, or require attendance for continued-education courses here?
  • How do you typically market the shop to build the clientele?

Last Questions for You to Ask

Once the interview is over and you’ve asked all of the questions above or even more that you might have wanted to add to the above list, there might be a couple more that you should ask for your own personal improvement.

  • Do yo have any feedback for me so that I can improve my strengths or practice my weaknesses?
  • Is there anything else you feel that I should know about this salon?
  • Typically how long should I expect before hearing back from you?

Wrapping It Up

How do you feel now that you have all of these questions answered?

Do you think the salon owner answered all of your questions adequately and fully?

Can you imagine yourself working under this person’s management?

Would you feel confident for yourself working here?

Think back on the interview and think about the body language of the salon owner. Were they genuinely interested and listening to your questions? Did they communicate clearly? Do you feel that they have Salon Owner qualities that will ensure that the business will continue to do well and you can thrive in this salon?

If yes, congratulations! You have done a great job asking the right kinds of questions and can make an informed decision for yourself and your career.

For red flags to watch out for and other lists and tips when preparing for an interview at a salon, please see 15 Questions to ask at a Salon Interview

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