Salon Owners: Start Acting Like Leaders


This is a post I link angry salon owners to. If you’re one of them, welcome! If not, I hope you at least find some amusement in my form response to the lunatics I sometimes encounter.

Dear Outraged Salon Owner,

I’ve been accused a few times of being “too hard” on your kind. If you poke through some of the comments on my less employer-friendly posts, you’ll find more than a few delicate flowers attacking me for statements I’ve made. (The truth hurts, doesn’t it?)

Recently, one salon owner went so far as to accuse me of “criminalizing” salon and spa owners.

I only criminalize salon and spa owners who actually ARE committing crimes and are, therefore, criminals.

Those of you who knowingly and willfully violate federal tax and labor laws have criminalized yourselves through your actions—I’m simply calling a spade a spade. It’s not my problem you can’t seem to handle being told the truth about your unlawful behavior.

I get it. You likely read a singular post on this blog (one that was probably sent to you by an employee of yours who felt you needed a dose of reality). That article left you feeling pretty butthurt and you just couldn’t help yourself, right? You went into keyboard warrior mode, pounding out ignorant assumptions and personal attacks against the person who punctured and deflated your fragile ego, despite the fact that you know less-than-dick about me or the things I do for this industry.

Let me introduce myself. I’m Tina Alberino. I’m not sorry and I don’t give a fuck about your feelings.

You had no way of knowing this before you went on your little tangent, but I have helped a lot of salon owners who had no idea they weren’t in compliance and protected them from potentially devastating audits and lawsuits, both through my content and by volunteering my time to them. I’ve consulted for more incoming salon owners than I can count, helping them structure their businesses so they never have to fear enforcement agencies. All these posts you see here? I spent hundreds of hours of my life researching the subjects and composing these articles for you for free. You’re welcome.

Clearly, I’m not here to hurt businesses for my own amusement.

I write to warn professionals and salon owners alike to avoid opportunistic, selfish, and illegal tactics.

You are business owners.
You are employers.
You are responsible (to an extent) for the livelihood of the people you employ.

So yes, I am “hard” on salon owners. I hold you to a higher standard. You should be elevating our industry and those who work in it; not breaking them down for your own benefit.

It is your responsibility as a business owner to ensure that your professionals are being compensated properly and treated fairly. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are informed about and in compliance with all state and federal regulations. If this was too heavy a burden to bear, you should never have opened a business to begin with.

If that makes me a bitch, I’m okay with that. If what I have to say is too tough for you to hear—get over it. You’ll get no apologies from me.

You are leaders; Start Acting like it.

Next time you find yourself sitting at your keyboard, trying to decide whether to fire off some idiotic, uninformed commentary, do yourself the tremendous favor of researching me and my body of work before you decide to make a fool of yourself. I’ve written two books and over 300 articles, many in defense of salon owners. I don’t play favorites here. I call it like I see it.

Remember who the hell I am. I am a salon owner myself who has spent over half my life managing salons, and I won’t tolerate your weak justifications for why you can’t competently do your job or your excuses for why you won’t take ownership of your responsibilities. I for damn sure won’t allow you to parade your bitter, entitled ass around in my email inbox, on social media, or in the blog comments without clapping back.

Don’t come for me unless I send for you.

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Beauty industry survivalist, salon crisis interventionist, tactical verb-weapon specialist, and the leader of at least a hundred workplace revolutions, Tina Alberino is known as much for her extensive knowledge as for her sarcastic wit and mercilessly straightforward style. She’s the author of the book The Beauty Industry Survival Guide and the blog This Ugly Beauty Business. When she’s not writing, educating, or consulting, she can be found overthinking everything, identifying problems people didn’t know existed, and stubbornly working to change the things she cannot accept.


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