The 5 Ps of 5 Star Ratings


Did you know that we have a woman to thank for the five-star rating systems? You’re not surprised, you say?

What if I told you she did it in 1820? Her name was Mariana Starke, and she was a bright, ambitious, young world traveler. Starke noticed that the only existing travel resource at the time was geared strictly to young men who could afford to travel and be exposed to other cultures. She decided it needed a facelift, so she created a guide for families and travelers on a budget who also wanted to see the wonders of the world. This guide told readers the best way to pack; where to find safe, affordable shelter and even how much an apple cost in every city. She then went on to create a system to help others decided how to plan their adventures by putting an explanation point to rate each topic. The more exclamation points, the better the rating. Later this mark was replaced by stars.

Now, imagine you are at work and check your schedule to find a certain Ms. Mariana Starke there. Guess what time traveler, you are about to get rated. Your mind starts racing. What service will she request? Is my treatment room clean? What’s the infused water of the day? I hope she likes it.

Today, every client is Mariana Starke, and the successful practitioner knows that. Every client is rating you and the quality of your service either online or by word of mouth. That is why we take our standards seriously and exceeding them even more seriously.

Here is a simple, no fail system for excellence for those whose vocation is in the sector of service industry that specializes in face-to-face, hands-on therapies.

1. Prepare

Write yourself a napkin note saying, “I can, I will, I am able and I am ready.” That feeling is the result of proper preparation. Preparation is the cornerstone of success. To be prepared, use the tools discussed below.

Know what you’re talking about. Proper preparation begins with learning and ends with never stopping learning. As Ben Franklin said, “Empty your purse into your head, and no man can take it from you.” Invest in your education and share information with your peers often and with a willing spirit. In an industry that thrives on and leads change, being current and well-rounded is a necessity.

Learn the lingo of your tribe. Using the correct terminology defines and increases your credibility, so walk your talk.

Stock with intention. Inventory control is our friend. Waste equals loss and no vacation for you this year.

Who are you? Decide and define yourself and your brand.

Be confident. Pack your lunch the night before with a big piece of confidence and a bottle of sunshine.

2. Pristine

If you have the honor of having a license to touch people, take this one seriously. Clean is a standard, but pristine is an experience. Put yourself in your client’s place. They trust you to have their best interest at heart. To do that, practice the following guidelines.

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Sanitize. Practice proper sanitation.

Clean. Dust is another word for disgusting.

Be ready. Infections can spread fast. Have your universal precautions in your head and be ready to act.

Make it an experience. Your client is a guest in your space. Make it the best experience they can have.

Make yourself comfortable. Respect yourself and create a workspace that is an oasis that you long to
be in.

3. Products

Products can be some of your best friends and an integral part to your best tools. Utilize the following when working with products.

Pick quality. They are part of your branding, work with quality only.

Bring them up. They are the tangible vehicle to new conversations and teaching clients about other services.

Know ingredients. Know an ingredient’s personality. Don’t send your client on a blind date they will regret.

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4. Present

There is a saying of Louise Hay that says, “The point of power is always in the present moment.” Be there with your client. Let them feel that sense of security that you are listening to them and that you care about the quality of your time together. My first boss would tell me that people want to know that you care before they ever care that you know. It is important to teach good practices to clients, but the information will be absorbed faster if they are involved in the process or experience while doing so.

Have purpose. Work with a sense of purpose.

Listen. Make a career out of being a good listener. It will reward you.

Respond. Listen with concern and respond with confidence. That is why you packed it in your lunch in the first place.

5. Promise

Make a commitment to quality. Decide every day that your brand stands for excellence and live your truth. Be your client’s dinner story. When you first see your client say, “there you are” like it’s Christmas morning and they are the gift you’ve been waiting for. End your service with “when do I get to see you again?” Let them know how much you enjoyed their company and want to continue the relationship. Ask for a second date.

Give Full Circle Service

Give full circle service. When you connect the tip of the star’s five points, you make a circle that never ends. Be a constant reliable source of superior service and caring. May the source 

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Lori Caruso has served in the beauty industry for decades as a stylist, manager, salon owner and instructor. She has been in esthetics for 19 years working in cosmetic surgery, dermatology, internal medicine and teaching. Competing in Toastmasters International and volunteering for Gilda’s Club help her understand the level of value and satisfaction found in sharing your gifts.

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