When Rio opened No Label Studio in 2017, she started by herself as the only stylist. But, as the business got busier, she needed to hire an assistant to help her with tasks. She brought on an assistant and started the assistant program.
The program has evolved significantly over the five years it has been in place. At first, the assistants were just there to help Rio and for Rio to walk them through her process, and show them what she was doing for clients. The assistants would also help with shampooing and blow-drying clients.
Rio has evolved and grown as a stylist since implementing the program. Now that she’s more organized with each assistant, she allows them to be more hands-on with clients. If Rio is foiling the front of a client, the assistant will be foiling the back while Rio explains and walks them through the process.
She has also implemented education days where all the stylists come together for hours, typically on Monday. On Fridays, all the stylists are focused on blowouts; the Blowout Bar is open, allowing assistants to get more experience and grow their clientele. Assistants can work with these clients and talk through what they want to do to their hair, which works on client and stylist interaction and forming those relationships. Styling blowouts also allow assistants to get product sales.
No Label has a level system that will enable them to grow within the business and grow as a stylist. The level system allows assistants to get raises when they move up, based on how many clients they have, which increases their tips and salary.
The assistant program has become a well-oiled machine now, with four assistants at No Label Studio at a time. When an assistant graduates, they will move up in the level system and hire a new girl in the program. Rio doesn’t want to over-saturate the salon with new clients, so she finds having four at a time is a perfect number.
Ashli was Rio’s first apprentice in 2018. She had been doing hair for a while but wanted to refine her skills and assist Rio part-time while taking her clients part-time. Together, the pair worked long and hard days. Sometimes they juggled five colors at a time. Ashli said the experience was exhausting but always fun, and she learned so much. “Rio taught me everything I know about color formulating. She is such an amazing teacher. She never makes anyone feel bad for asking questions, helping out if you need it, or just bouncing ideas off each other,” Ashli said.
Ashli assisted Rio for about a year and a half and helped her through her maternity leave with her second baby. Ashli learned how to balance multiple clients, formulate well, have detailed and refined haircuts, and have better customer service skills because of Rio. Rio takes pride in all the apprentice’s being thoroughly trained and sufficient in any skill they may be asked to do.
“The apprentice program has come a long way. We were definitely learning as we went, figuring out what worked for both of us. It’s awesome watching the program grow. These girls coming in are getting better and better education as the program is refined and streamlined. I feel so thankful to have gone through it with Rio because it definitely made me the stylist I am. I am confident in every area she trained me in, and I know I can pass it along to the other girls because she gave me the tools to do so!”
Mya was one of the most recent stylists to go through the apprentice program. She was in beauty school last November and graduated school in September. Mya started working at No Label as a full-time assistant in October. When she first started, she helped Rio once a week after school. Once Mya started getting used to the salon, she started doing more education days on Mondays. She now helps the other stylists and Rio whenever they need help, as well as education days a couple of days a week. She does blowouts all day, keeps the salon clean, and helps the girls with what they need. Mya helps to sell products, check out clients and loves getting to know the clients.
The apprentice program at No Label has helped her more than beauty school ever did because she’s working in a trending salon, knows what clients want while actively learning what clients preferences are. Mya’s favorite parts of the day are doing blowouts, learning new things from other stylists, assisting other stylists, and getting to know the clients better. Her least favorite parts of the day would be when the salon is slower, which is when she tends to clean and do laundry.
If you are interested in learning something new everyday while also advancing your business as a stylist, reach out to our salon today about the apprentice program.
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