Prize provided by:

Skin Inc Video Education

One lucky respondent to this month's Vocal Point question will receive free registration for the Physiology of the Skin course from Skin Inc. Video Education, a $149 value! Based on the beloved book by Peter T. Pugliese, MD and Zoe Draelos, MD, this 4-lesson course will arm you with the knowledge you need to better serve your clients.

Note: Winners will be chosen by random drawing and will be notified by e-mail. Prize will be sent directly from the sponsor. Winners are only eligible once every 12 months. All decisions of the editor are final.

Vocal Point Survey

The results are in! Here's what you had to say about our question from August 2011.

The Vocal Point responses have not been edited, and are posted as they were originally submitted. The opinions expressed in these responses are not necessarily those of www.SkinInc.com or Skin Inc. magazine.

Other than a salary increase, what is the best incentive you have offered your spa team members?

This month's Vocal Point Survey winner!Our staff is the best.They take pride in their accomplishments and so do we, the owners. Besides the basic salaries, we provide key financial incentives based on production--either commission or total revenue. Therefore, everybody has a stake in the overall team performance. Then, every Friday morning, we have a staff meeting. Everyone is required to attend—estheticians, physician, front desk staff, spa manager, owner/marketing director. The agenda may be educational, keeping us all on the cutting edge of technological developments, or open discussions about what we can do better as a team. Breakfast is provided, which, frankly, helps ensure everyone attends. Furthermore, product reps often come (with lunch) to present a new line or review or update us on one we already carry. Manufacturer reps/trainers come so we are up-to-date on laser and IPL protocols. We offer microdermabrasion, chemical peels, fractional laser skin rejuvenations, laser vein treatment and laser hair removal. Additionally, everyone is encouraged to use all the products so we can experience the results first-hand. Often, the reps supply samples, but staff members can also purchase anything they like at cost. All of us also benefit from all the treatments on the menu at no charge. However, the most popular incentives are the quarterly celebrations. When we have a successful quarter, we party. We go out and eat, drink, and have a great time!
- Elaine Greenberg, Owner, Ageless Remedies SouthPark, Charlotte, NC
We provide free product.
- Barbara Wicklund, Owner, Cleopatra's, Rockford, IL
We started a bonus program to give the technicians an incentive to produce more. They have a quarterly service goal that is certain percent above what they did the previous year. If they reach their goal, they receive a 1-2% bonus each quarter. It seems to be a win-win situation.They get excited about reaching their goal and getting a bonus, while the spa increases its revenue.
- Beverly Miller, President, Tranquility, St. Charles, Illinois
We have featured products for retail each month. They are usually the hottest new items. Whoever sells the most retail wins a basket with all of the month's featured items in it.
- Christine Pankow, Owner, High Violet Salon & Spa, Baraboo, WI
Having a new hire intake form that asks simple questions such as what is your favorite local restaurants, clothing stores, any hobbies, etc. This feedback allows the manager or owner to make an incentive gifting program including things they can strive for. Then, at every group meeting, the highest retail-seller has received a gift card for one favorite place. It really does create for motivational meeting and a fun environment.
- Aimee Fuentes, Owner, Esthetic Options, Seattle, WA
10% on retail; uniform shirts paid for by the company; free staff Botox; all services provided at cost; and holiday picnics and parties.
- Melinda Reeves, Owner/Operator, Melinda's Medical Day Spa LLC, North Myrtle Beach, SC
Discounted treatments, annual bonus incentives and quarterly group activities.
- Diedre Cahill, Business Manager, Youthful Endeavors MedSpa, Manitowoc, WI
Small base salary plus tips and lower commission; set up somewhat like they do in finer resturants. Work performance seems better and more steady with structure. Cross training with base salary is consistant because they are on the clock and there is not cap on their income. Marketing is doubled with the commission incentive.
- Debbie Keaton, Owner, SkinAesthetics II, Cordova, TN
We pay for extra education classes.
- Shelly LaLonde, Esthetician, Pure Escape face and body spa, Washington, MI
We offer a free service or product.
- Janet Apour, Esthetician, Janet's Skin Care, San Carlos, CA
A birthday coupon for a day off on each employee's birthday that is valid for one year.
- Michael Carlson, COO, Highland Laboratories, Mt. Angel, OR
We offer free products and services.
- Lori Coleman, Esthetitican, Southwest Laser and Medspa, Crown Point, IN
Education!! I offer the opportunity to apprentice as a makeup artist to my independent contractors. The skills they gain assisting during photo shoots, weddings and special event makeup is incomparable. Knowledge through experience is power!
- Lindsay Garric, Owner, fabYOUglam, Reno, NV
Other than a salary increase, products or educational classes have always been a successful incentive for spa team members. We also held a sales contest in which the winner got a trip to Fashion Week in New York City!
- Desteni Bisio, Esthetician, Skin Care by Desteni , Visalia, CA
I have offered my staff various incentives such as team-building activities, such as limo, dinner and evening out with spouses and significant others, indoor skydiving and dinner cruises on the lake. This allows the spa to work as a team in order to achieve greater success as a whole, and it also builds camaraderie as well as friendly competition.
- Lacey Lockhart, Spa Director, LifeSpa & Salon, Colorado Springs, CO
Spa bucks to use toward spa services.
- Pam Denton, Vice President, Victoria's Day Spa, Yorktown, VA
Salon and spa show tickets
- Melanie Ullman, Owner, Pure Bliss Salon & Spa, Lewes, DE
I am an esthetician who is currently working for a very busy medical spa in Woodbury Minnesota. I have worked for a number of employers in the past and have experienced all different types of ways to compensate a 'job well done.' The best by far has been my most recent incentive. Our employer offered all of our spa team members a gift certificate to a local medical spa of our choice. She not only wanted to treat us to the relaxation and treatment value of receiving the service, but in return as a learning tool as well. Once all of our team members had received their esthetic treatment, we all wrote down what out experience was from the moment we walked in, to the moment we walked out. We then conducted a staff meeting as we sat around breakfast and talked about what we had experienced. It was actually a lot of fun to find out that we were all playing the role as if we were still using Sea Breeze and Stridex in the bathroom. For me, this shows how much my employer cares about showing her appreciation to treat us to such a luxury but found a way to provide an incentive for herself through education to ensure her business is up to par with the fast paced evolution in the spa industry.
- Samantha Reith , Esthetican , Radiance Medspa, Woodbury , MN
Free laser services if they reach an agreed-upon goal. It is a win-win; they get to experience it, tell the clients about it and it is a great motivator.
- Nikki Rasmussen, Owner, Yolo Laser Center & Med Spa, Guilford, CT
As the owner, I offer all staff products at wholesale cost. This is also offered to their immediate family. It's a great incentive for them to use our products and helps them at gift time.
- Saundra Grillo, CEO, Skin Rejuvenation Center and Spa, Danvers, MA
Our office formed a kickball team, and we were offered the opportunity to play against other teams in a local league. We had customized uniforms with unique names for all of our staff members that opted to join in the fun. It was a great team-building experience and a ton of fun!
- Stacie Clark, Esthetician, Oculus Skin Care Centre, Atlanta, GA
We all know this economy isn't at its best. We are all trying to stretch that dollar. So how can you do this while keeping your team happy?Create a monthly incentive package. put all team members names in a box, draw one team member's name each month for a free massage, facial or whatever you want to make of it. This will create a fun encouragement for them, and something to look forward to at the end of the month. Make it fun while creating a positive enviornment. Keeping your team happy will keep your clients happy, which will create profit for everyone for the future.
- Sandra Deir, Esthetician/Manager, Urban Medspa, Chico, CA
We have had contests to sell the most gift certificates. I love to get everyone involved. Encourage them to go out and ask people if they want to buy a gift certificate, or if they have ever had a massage or facial. I spoke to a lady and she brought her mom and sister back for a spa day four months later. Success!
- Holly Massoni, Owner/Esthetician/Massage Therapist, White River Mini Spa, Gassville, AR
The best incentive I would offer my spa team members would be to offer tuition reimbursement if they wanted to further their education in skin care and or makeup artistry. Some skin care therapists and cosmetologists, after working or while working in the spa industry realize that he or she wants to expand their knowledge on certain areas of skin and hair. For instance, now that I am a skin care therapist, I have considered medical esthetics and even going back to school for dermatology, if I worked for a spa company that honored this idea and would even pay for it that would be great! The benefits would be so rewarding; spas could have onsite dermatologists who once were skin care therapists or spas could have on-site trichologist who once were just cosmetologist! This could be a new trend.
- Kimberly Dobbins, Esthetician, Nails Plus Day Spa of Memphis, Memphis, TN
Longer vacations
- Kjell Ask, Managing Director, SkinPartner AS, Rasta, Akershus
Our staff is the best.They take pride in their accomplishments and so do we, the owners. Besides the basic salaries, we provide key financial incentives based on production--either commission or total revenue. Therefore, everybody has a stake in the overall team performance. Then, every Friday morning, we have a staff meeting. Everyone is required to attend—estheticians, physician, front desk staff, spa manager, owner/marketing director. The agenda may be educational, keeping us all on the cutting edge of technological developments, or open discussions about what we can do better as a team. Breakfast is provided, which, frankly, helps ensure everyone attends. Furthermore, product reps often come (with lunch) to present a new line or review or update us on one we already carry. Manufacturer reps/trainers come so we are up-to-date on laser and IPL protocols. We offer microdermabrasion, chemical peels, fractional laser skin rejuvenations, laser vein treatment and laser hair removal. Additionally, everyone is encouraged to use all the products so we can experience the results first-hand. Often, the reps supply samples, but staff members can also purchase anything they like at cost. All of us also benefit from all the treatments on the menu at no charge. However, the most popular incentives are the quarterly celebrations. When we have a successful quarter, we party. We go out and eat, drink, and have a great time!
- Elaine Greenberg, Owner, Ageless Remedies SouthPark, Charlotte, NC
An education seminar of her choice at a skin education center.
- Sandra Guenette, Manager/Owner, Spa One, Inc., Colorado Springs, CO
Unpaid time off; education that is not just spa related, including health, diet, finance and budgeting; complementary spa service durng down time; trade shows; and employee of the month, which includes preferred parking, a gift card to another business that is not spa related and team recognition.
- Kerian Bray, Partner, Skin 'n Tonic , Lahaska, PA
The incentive I have working for the employees at my spa is to let them have complete control over their endeavors. To be artistic is to allow each person to be that.
- Patricia Simmons, Owner/Esthetician, The Blue Portal, Owings Mills, MD
At the end of each month, the one who sells the most spa incentive packages (client pre-pays six-month package at reduced price to be deducted from credit card each month) will receive $40 for four, $60 for six,etc. And there is a Ben Franklin just waiting for the one who signs up 10.
- Tinamarie Dougherty, Owner, Pure the Spa, Wading River, NY
I pay per percent. Starting at 50% commission, once you have earned $600, you recieve 70% of your earnings. It basically gives rent to start, then it's just product and hydro. I also give an extra 10% for they're return clientele.
- Kathy Schenk, Owner/Operator, Absolute Solitude Spa, Kitchener, Ontario
Investment options that they then match what I invest. I love it; it helps me save for a rainy day or retirement.
- Amy Buseman, Esthetician, Estetico, Klemme, IA
Bonus, recognition on doing a job or a small gift of one of our products.
- Claudia Dib, Electrologist/President, Claudia's Body & Skin Care Cente, Hayward, CA
The best incentive is to trust them and what they do.
- Ana Gerlach, Esthetician/Makeup Artist, My Radiant Skin, Milwaukee, WI
An all-expense-paid trip to a conference or educational seminar. One great incentive is a complimentary trip to another spa! For smaller incentives, I have used a free basket of the products we sell.
- Clara Brown, Director, Riverfront Royale Salon & Med Spa, Vidalia, LA
Incentives are a key to your business; every day we have a goal sheet so the girls can visually see what their upgrade and retail percentages are for that day. At the end of the year, the one that has attained their goals at least 90% of the time gets their name in a drawing for a week in Cabo at the Playa Grande (flight and room paid for). They may invite up to seven guests to go with them since this is a penthouse suite.
- Lynn Braden, Owner, Facelogic, Chino, CA
An all expense paid three-day cruise to Mexico
- Monica Lucero, Owner, Fabulous, Darling!, Martinez, CA
Free Botox and Juvederm. It's a great incentive for the staff, and they sell a lot of it to clients with their enthusiasm and great results. It pays for itself in new injectible clients!
- Rikki Kusy, Aesthetician/Practice Manager, LeBella MedSpa, Scottsdale, AZ
The best incentive I have shared with my team members is my time to expand on their personal experience as they are going through a transformation process via skin care products and/or procedures. I have found that giving your team these extra perks at no out-of-pocket cost to them is a wonderful incentive, but in my opinion should be provided by an employer if it is distributed out of the office. What I have experienced on many occasions is that it is rewarding to see them through their journey, but priceless seeing your employees giving their personal interest and experience to a patient's inquiry. Education is power, and customer service is a necessity. After I have seen front office members do this, it is not long before they want to learn more. Due to this, I will often include a monetary perk based upon documentation. I like to track our marketing resources to stay on top of where our advertising dollars are most beneficial. This can be tedious and may not be the No. 1 priority in reception and their busy schedules. The bonus program I like to incorporate with the clinical coordinator or reception office is a tracking system that begins when they schedule the client for a consultation visit. If that visit turns into a service or purchase, a notch on the tier ladder is reached and they are compensated. My favorite monetary payouts are for recovering a cancellation or documented service follow up by the clinician. It may seem like a lot of extra task work, but as service providers, this is what an employer would hope their team members are doing, or shall we say, expect? With this tier approach it gives the spa team members an opportunity to achieve bonus compensation and better yet, service the client. Everybody wins!
- Darcy Dugger, Owner, Beauti Mark, Yakima, WA
Employee Insights show that you are interested in your employees' career and growth. Actively work on their professional growth just like working on growing the business.
- Violet White, Owner, Violet White Total Body Care, Virginia Beach, VA
They can purchase skin care and spa products at wholesale, which they cannot do on their own due to tax licensing and quantity discounts. Plus, they are now using the products and are able to direct clients to the proper skin care system.
- Eileeen Tomczyk, Owner/Operator, The Skin Center, Los Lunas, NM
Once I offered my team members as trip to a spa conference, all expenses paid, if we met certain criteria. It really worked, and we all had a great time AND learned a lot as well.
- Marguerite Barnett, MD, Mandala Med- Spa, Sarasota, FL
Sliding scale bonuses can work nicely, and long- or short-term sales calendar can be something as small as a day getaway for the family to a weekend getaway. People seem so busy with day-to-day schedules and emergencies, little thought is given to 'time out' which seem good for children...why not us?
- Brenda Romanow, Owner/Esthetician, Desired Image Skin Care Clinic, Amherst, NY
Team members should have the knowledge of different treatments and products through Skin Inc. magazine and attend the Face & Body show that held each year in Northern California or the Midwest ... and need psychological factors and good communication.
- Ngan Doan, Esthetician, Vicky's Nails, Alameda, CA
Education and knowledge
- Mercedes Barao, President, Belissima Skin Care, Tampa, FL
As an incentive for my employee, I offer free education and travel to and from conferences.This way, we both benefit and she gets to learn what's new at the same time.
- Daunne Gagnier-Hall, Esthetician/Owner, Sweet Dreams Esthetics Studio, Smithers, B.C.
We have offered spa days based on a bonus system. They staff member can come to the spa as a client and must be treated as someone who we have never met before. They can then relax in our soothing enviroment and take in the beauty and the experience that we offer to our clients every day.
- Melissa Lyons, Owner, Laser It Salon & Medical Spa, Windsor, Ontario
We offer days off and the ability to leave early or come in later. We are very flexible with the schedule. We also give gift cards for quotas being met and give free treatmens.
- Carina Pantoja, Owner, Eclipse Massage & Spa, Deer Park, TX
Gifts
- Rita Kady, Esthetician, The Beauty Cafe, Melrose, MA
Internal contests where everyone wins (weight loss, increasing exercise, educational reading motivation/sharing); use of facilities during down time (gym, pool, etc); friends and family discounts during off-peak hours so that staff members can show off where they work; involving executive committee members or ownership in spa activities with personal notes from them to staff immediatly following; involving the team in marketing decisions, menu development and product choices (sometimes your best ideas come from your newest staff members....you could be surprised!); and remaining positive toward staff when times are tough so they know you are backing them up.
- Lynn Curry, Principal, Curry Spa Consulting LLC, Glen Ellen, CA
Botox, fillers and Latisse. Our staff looks great and raves about the products to their clients, which, in turn, increases sales. It's a win-win for everyone.
- Rikki Kusy, Esthetician, LeBella Salon & MedSpa, Scottsdale, AZ
Products and treatments at cost, and I pay half their health insurance.
- Lisa Chism, Owner, Simply Beautiful Medical Spa & Salon, Gassvilee, AR
This year, we implemented a program for our patients to encourage them to get on a product regimen from our office. In order to have all the staff on board to make this program a success, the staff could earn product for themselves if the reached the patient quota. This has proved to be a fun way to unify our office to work together for a common goal.
- Amanda Parrish, Esthetician, The Spa at Suzanne Bruce & Associates, Houston, TX
I have offered them gratis products and gift cards.
- Lucy Christopher, Owner, BrandedBeauty, Milton, GA
The small things matter, like surprising staff members with coffee/tea and fresh fruit in the morning, or with a card of appreciation, or taking the staff out for a happy hour, or gifting a service or a product, or a personalized gift certificate to somewhere, or a paid day off for good work.
- Meme Curtis, Medical Esthetician , Premier Dermatology, San Francisco, CA
I am not the offering party, as I am a spa employee, but I can definately say from the receiver's point of view, a gym membership package was one of the best incentives I've seen! The owners of the salon and day spa where I work offered its employees a wonderful membership, where they would pay all of the registration fees and we would be responsible for monthly fees thereafter. This was an extremely great incentive for me since I have wanted to join a gym for some time, but always found the fees to be too expensive and was unable to afford it. By the owners paying the $125 initial fee and negotiating a reduced rate with the gym, I now have full access to a superior workout facility! I have had great success and have helped motivate my fellow employees to join me in creating a healthy and fit lifestyle.
- Faith Stevens, Salon Manager, DreamWeaver Salon and Day Spa, Noblesville, IN