Ways to Spot & Stop a Perv: Part II of IIMads Ambrose
In my last post, Ways to Spot and Stop a Perv: Part I, I discussed some ways you can implement safe practices in your salon or spa to benefit yourself and keep your employees out of harms way, but not everyone works in a team environment and sometimes you need to be prepared to fend for yourself. Today, I am going to share some bullet-points from my own personal experiences as a sole-proprietor esthetician that have helped to keep me stay safe over the years. Feel free to use any that are deemed appropriate.
NEW CLIENTS MUST ALWAYS BOOK ONLINE
This has given me the confidence to end questionable and potentially harassing phone calls. It has also allowed me to turn away a sketchy walk-in. I am by appointment only so I don’t take walk-ins, but I can always adjust this rule as needed.
IF YOU’RE NOT EXPECTING AN APPOINTMENT, LOCK THE DOOR
A colleague of mine in the same building had to deal with a scary and potentially dangerous situation where a man busted in and refused to leave her shop. Luckily our badass property manager was alerted and she saved the day! After that incident, locking the door became a rule that I live by when I am in the salon alone.
HAVE AN EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBER SAVED ON SPEED-DIAL
My building’s property manager is constantly around so I can call her as back up if needed. Identify who your on-premise backup is and have them on speed-dial in the event a situation escalates.
REQUIRE A CREDIT CARD WHEN BOOKING A NEW CLIENT
Yes, this is also very important for late cancellations and to enforce your no-show policy, but it is also a strong security measure. Offenders are less likely to make an appointment somewhere that requires giving information that connects to their legal information.
DISCUSS SPECIFICS ABOUT SERVICES IN-PERSON - NO DETAILS OVER THE PHONE.
In waxing, it is normal to discuss genitals, but I am not about to sit here and describe the anatomy of a Brazilian to you, sir. To avoid the type of pervs that want to hear you say “scrotum” over the phone, you gotta have this rule in place. Consultations can even be booked at no cost if the person doesn’t want to receive a service yet. Make sure to still get their credit card info to reserve the appointment!
SET BOUNDARIES AROUND A CONVERSATION WITH YOUR CLIENT
Some of my clients have been with me for five-plus years. We have TMI conversations constantly. Some of my clients are newer and I’m still getting to know them. It is a relationship built on trust to be able to talk about certain things. If you are not comfortable talking about a detailed one night stand with a new client whose butthole you’re waxing - have the confidence to say that this is inappropriate and you will end the service if it happens again.
TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS
If it feels questionable, it probably is. End a phone call or service immediately if your instincts say that the person has crossed a boundary in any way, even if it means discontinuing the service midway through the appointment. Notify anyone you work with this person’s name, phone number, and the content of the incident.
When you work alone, particularly in the service industry where you’re dealing with the public and strangers in your workplace, you tend to be more vulnerable. It is vital to have a plan in place to both prevent and manage an incident if it takes place. If at any point you feel unsafe while working alone, leave. Your safety is more important than the work you are doing.
Stay safe, babes!