Torn Between Two Stylists

Conflict concept.I had my nails done recently. I love my nail technician and we have become good friends over the last few years. While my nails are being done, I get to sit and chat about my life for an hour and am guaranteed a sympathetic ear. I leave the salon feeling energized and happy about my beautiful nails.

Except this week.

The salon owner and my nail tech got into this heated discussion about an elderly patrons at the salon. It seems that the woman is suffering from dementia. Her husband (probably also with dementia) will drop her at the shop and forget where she is. They forget to bring money to pay. They have difficulty walking. It sounds like a sad situation and the salon owner feels his only role is to make her hair look good. My nail tech felt that they needed to call the authorities and report that this couple was incapable of living alone.

First of all, this discussion should have taken place in private. Secondly, it escalated to the point that both parties were getting mean. And I, a captive audience with half-finished acrylic nails,  was getting increasingly stressed.

At first I joked, “Mom and Dad! Stop arguing. You are upsetting the children.” They didn’t stop. Then I said, “This is my relaxation time. I’m getting stressed.” And they continued. Finally I told them to stop arguing and they were free  to continue the discussion after I left. It was awful.

When we are buying a service, it is more than just a haircut or nice nails. We are buying a feeling of peace that makes us feel beautiful. This cannot happen when providers bring their grievances to their clients. We need to always be professional, even when we view our clients as friends.

Today, blog about a memorable customer experience. Share any lessons that you learned.


Loss and Resiliency

Bella Photo Cropped
Bella (on left) snuggling with one of our other dogs

This week has been rough. My dear miniature dachshund, Bella, is no longer with us. Bella came into our lives five years ago. She had been an impulse purchase, over the Christmas holidays, by a local teenager who wanted “a dog to carry around in her purse, so she could be like Paris Hilton.”

Bella was tiny and cute. She was also a year old and the product of a puppy mill. The teen soon lost interest, and Bella become less important than her school, job and boyfriend. Until we adopted her, Bella spent most of her young life in a cage.

Three years ago, Bella developed severe neck pain. We were within hours of euthanizing her, when we found a neurologist who agreed to perform surgery. At that point the compression on her neck was so bad that it was doubtful Bella would ever walk again. She came home with a four-inch scar on the back of her neck, a whole lot of medication, and a resilient spirit.

About six weeks ago, she started limping. It soon became evident that she was once again having disk problems and surgery was not an option. Pain medication became less and less effective. On Monday morning, I knew that she was not going to make it through. I loved her too much to let her continue suffering.

This is the first time we’ve lost a dog and I am mourning her loss. I think that I will always miss her. As my friend Robyn says, “She was my heart dog.”

Today, blog about a time that you were resilient.


What is your favorite tool?

Label making machineLet’s face it … everyone appreciates ideas that make life a bit easier. Most of us have favorite tools that are specific to our business or hobby.  These tools can be software, hardware, or low-tech items that don’t require recharging to function.

I’m guessing that one of the most tool-oriented hobbies is photography. When my daughter attended a photography club, I was astounded to see that most of the members had bags full of gadgets. I’m not sure if any of these tools resulted in better photographs, but clearly they were fun to buy and there were always lots of new things to share at meetings.

This brings me to my favorite business tool — a label maker. I use a Brother P-touch that is  more than 5 years old. It’s simple to use and the results are amazing!

Labels provide a uniform look and make everything look neat. I label everything! I have labels on my electronic cords, as well as on memory sticks, binders, file folders and storage boxes. My quilt fabric is organized by color and placed in neatly labeled boxes.  I even label my shelves so that I know where to find books and supplies.

When I am feeling out of control or disorganized, I take out my label maker and do some labeling. Within moments I am feeling like I’ve made progress toward creating a calm, well-organized office.

Think about your favorite tool. Why do you like it? How do you use it? Is there a particular brand you would recommend? How has it improved your life? Share it with your readers and help make their lives easier too.