Creating a wellness culture in your spa and being the example for your staff
With the exploding growth of the Wellness Industry, which was “estimated at over 4.4 trillion dollars in 2019….set to increase to over 6 trillion by 2025” wellness services are becoming a signature of the spa industry.
Wellness Services can include anything from aromatherapy to a retreat. However, the essence of any wellness service is the experience. The guest experience is not a new concept. However, when branding your services as wellness, the experience becomes an essential component of the service. What makes for a great wellness experience from entry to exit? Staff. Staff has always been integral, but now, this main ingredient may need to be upgraded to rise to the level of the wellness experience.
The spa’s reputation has been built on the quality of the services you provide. The spa has always made sure staff is trained in the latest hands-on treatment trend and the continuous expansion of the quality of the service as well as customer service protocols, but is it time to invest in wellness lifestyle/workstyle training; allowing all staff to embrace the principal components of wellness for themselves? When offering services branded as wellness, the experience becomes an imperative.
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All of us live lives that produce stress; mainly because of how we manage stress and perceive situations we label as stressful. However, what if everyone in the spa were able to work in a more mindful mindset? What if there were hardly any disagreements, or negative attitudes, even with difficult guests? This is what living the wellness concept within your spa could look like. Every person the guest meets along the way, reinforcing the wellness experience.
How is this done? It always starts at the top; with the leader(s). Whatever energy is at the top is what you will see in your culture. What traits would you like to see in a culture of wellness in your spa? Whatever these traits are, they need to start with the leader. Effective leaders will always engage in what they recommend to their team members for themselves. If the leader practices a workstyle of a well spa culture, he/she becomes an example. An effective, wellness leader:
1. Understands what is important to each staff member. They know what the staff member wants to achieve, or grow into, and help them create a plan within the organization.
2. Recognize the gifts of each of their staff members. Some maybe very good at the service, but not so good at retail; some may excel at selling, but not at re-booking. As a leader, we can find a way to make the strength/gift a gateway into what the staff member feels uncomfortable at.
3. Coach them on embracing and seeing their own gifts and utilizing them to advance.
4. Encourage them to live their own life of Wellness. Experimenting/Adopting meditation, mindfulness, belief discovery, etc. This will also help them perform with a higher level of emotional intelligence, so they are not tripped up by their emotions.
One of the most difficult challenges in creating a wellness culture, is in the management of emotions. Spa staff, at their core are very loving, empathetic, and compassionate. These traits bring with them a passion, which, when left unchecked can become drama. Helping staff with emotional intelligence is a core imperative when creating a wellness culture. It starts first, with the leader doing continual check ins on their own emotional balance. In a wellness culture, ego cannot have a role.
Mindfulness training, Emotional Intelligence Training, and Belief Reset Training are 3 of the best trainings to infuse into a high-level wellness spa. When everyone practices a new culture of wellness together, the results are palpable.
A simple 5 step acronym for staying emotionally well is to BE S.M.A.R.T. When feeling triggered into a negative emotion this process can take the emotional energy down to a manageable place and better foster a wellness culture:
STOP: Step back from the situation, as if you were an observer. I call it the Google earth effect. Take slow, deep breaths into your abdomen to begin to lower the emotional energy. Observe how you are feeling in that moment and stop yourself from allowing your emotion to overpower you. On a scale of 1 – 10 where is this really in importance.
Mindful Awareness: Pay attention to what is going on in the situation and what is the trigger for yourself as well as the other person. You cannot control what is going on in the other person’s mind, but you can control what goes on in yours. In so many cases, the other person is dealing with many challenges, and you just happen to be in the line of fire. It means nothing about you. It is about their perceptions. You do not have to engage in their perceptions.
Assessment: Why are you being triggered? What about what was done, or said do you feel is an attack on you? What do you believe about you that is causing your physical and mental reaction? Is it true, or is this a habitual perception that you can look at, see the truth in, and let go of?
Response: Now that you can deconstruct the emotion, it is easier to respond in a logical manner, or in many cases, not respond. Many times, no response to something being said or done is more effective than anything you could say or do, and it allows you to stay out of the emotion of it.
Take the lesson: Now that you have been able to catch yourself before you move through a response that does not serve you or the other person, you can start paying attention to what other situations, words, etc. trigger you and use the same process to allow you to stay in a calm place in the midst of chaos.
In the beginning, this process will be hard. You will find yourself catching yourself AFTER an emotional response and thinking about how you could have interrupted yourself. Then the next time you will catch yourself in the middle of the emotional response, and then eventually you will catch yourself BEFORE the emotional response. It is about learning a new way to interact with the world around you… In a way of wellness…being able to walk the talk of what you offer your guest.