Salon TLC get help starting up

When Tina Harvey and her colleagues Liz Boleat and Christina Kingsland decided to set up their own hair salon, they knew lots about hair, but very little about business.

Thankfully a family member suggested calling Jersey Business, and just nine months after their first meeting, the hairdressing trio were ready to open their first salon.

“We thought all you had to do was find the premises, print flyers and open up,” Tina said. “We had no idea about things like registering a business, or social security, or manpower returns. We didn’t even know you needed a lawyer to write contracts.”

Working with Business Advisor Nick Steel, the hairdressers developed a business plan, picking up business skills, knowledge, and confidence at every step.

Tina said: “Nick helped us focus on what was realistic, and helped us with almost everything; from how to write a business plan, to how to finance the business, and even how to work out the costings for the water and electricity we would use.

“After finding the right location, Nick suggested getting a surveyor to assess how much work was required before we signed the lease and he also helped find us a lawyer. Thanks to the help we received from Jersey Business we had everything in place to open on time.

“Jersey Business made us believe in ourselves. There were quite a few times in the process when we worried it was going to be too much for us. But they gave us the right sort of encouragement and by being more confident with the financial side; we are able to give our clients a better service too.”

Since the salon opened in March 2014, TLC has consolidated its business, attracting new clients from across St Brelade. Bookings are busy and the salon has taken on an extra member of staff for Saturdays, and employs a book keeper. Tina and her colleagues have remained in touch with Nick, and receive on-going advice whenever issues come up.

Nick said: “When Christine, Liz, and Tina came to Jersey Business they had lots of experience working as hairdressers, but no experience setting up, or running their own businesses. Their starting position was simply the ambition to set up their own salon. Our objective was to help get them to think about how they could commercialise their technical skills, and then, once they had a solid business plan, how to look for investment and how to go about securing a property and opening the business.

“The clients developed a very robust plan, and went about everything in the right order, which meant that they had finance in place before they signed a lease on a property. They worked out what they needed for the refit so they could get builders in as soon as they got the keys. This meant they made the most of their initial free-rent period which helped the business get off to a really good start.”

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