Click Here to read what the former Semion employees say about our culture. We are proud but at the same time humbled by the relationships that we have built over the years.
Coming from a family of four generations of barbers, I never had to ask myself this question. My father buzzed my hair until I was six years old, and my brother Semion practiced on my hair ever since, but that is a story for another time. After moving to New York City in 1999, finding a great barber or hairstylist was never a problem since NYC was full of top-level professionals. After we moved to Denver, Colorado, in 2001, the overwhelming amount of compliments Semion received from both professionals in the industry and clients for his skill and delivery of service made us question the Colorado haircutting industry.
The haircutting industry is oversaturated with so many different establishments, ranging from chains to home-based salons, so there are many options, consequently, the days when your favorite barber worked in one location until retirement is in the past. The average employment duration for stylists stands at three years, with an unconfirmed 60% of them leaving the industry entirely in that time. This sad but real statistic affects everyone shop owners to clients.
We all know the feeling when we come in to get a haircut, and our one and only stylist is longer there. We feel shocked and sometimes betrayed. And yet, we still need a haircut, so we are forced to play the hairstyling version of Russian Roulette. Occasionally you dodge a bullet, but often you walk away with a less-than-legit look haircut, causing us to politely smile, pay for the haircut, leave a tip, and go home to receive “compliments” for our new look.
From the shop owner’s perspective, it is tough to lose a well-experienced team member. But we cannot stop people from moving a place of residence, getting sick, or just starting something independently. This is the reality of our industry, and it does not happen only at our barbershop it happens everywhere, as I am sure you already know. What was the last time you have seen your bank teller or coffee barista work at the same place for more than three years?! Also, we too have to let go of stylists as their service quality decreases. They make customers wait beyond their appointment time because they continuously arrive to work late or miss workdays, create drama or conduct themselves unprofessionally. After all, we have a strong reputation; therefore, we will not tolerate behavior that could ruin it. We are careful at our hiring process, training process, and, more importantly, our separation process. Some are a good fit at Semion Barbershop, while others are a good fit at Supercuts. There is nothing wrong with either, just a question of cultural fit.
So how does the journey for a great hairstylist or barber begins? In general, we ask our friends, and we search Yelp and Google Reviews, but too often, we’re left feeling disappointed because the good online reviews were given to unnamed stylists. Or, the stylist you want is too busy, and you have to schedule your whole day around that haircut, you have to pay a hefty price, and/or you have to drive for a long time. We try stylist after stylist until we find one that we are satisfied with and pray that it will be a long-term relationship. But remembering the statistic above, this relationship will last on average only +/- 3 years.
We at Semion Barbershop have recognized this severe issue and are determined to resolve it for all Coloradoans. We asked ourselves: why do hairstylists leave their current employer roughly every three years?! Well, in all honesty, this is a new trend affecting almost every industry. People are looking for something new, different challenges, better compensation packages, growth opportunities, and more. We all seek to self-actualize. Thus, we at Semion provide top compensation packages for our team members the include bonuses and full health coverage, along with an in-house training program and the ability to participate and grow within the company. Instead of treating our team members as on-the-clock employees, they are allowed to be part of the Semion concept: our team members participate in all aspects of the barbershop, from décor to the products and services we provide. As a result, we have not eliminated the turnover as it is impossible, but we have brought it down significantly to the below the average.
But above all, we nurture respect and open communication from within the company. At the end of the day, whether you are a team member or a client, we are all humans with feelings, families, and goals; in short, we are part of the community. Semion is not just a place where we cut hair. Instead, it is a place where we build relationships between team members. We are the connection between a Starbucks barista to a tax accountant at Ernst and Young. Some clients call us affordable therapy doctors. The foundation of our industry should not dwell on how prestigious the brand is. Instead, it should dwell on whether or not we CARE about each other. It is not just a top-notch haircut. It is about a relationship that we are proud to support and share with others. Prestige is not the goal. It is only a by-product. That’s why when we were named the 5280 Top Barbershop in Denver, Colorado for 2013 and 2014, we did not even know about it until our clients told us!
I want to leave you with two questions:
- If you can get a great haircut, but the personality or the atmosphere of the place was awful, would you return?
- If your haircut was not good, but your stylist was friendly, and the atmosphere was excellent, would you return?
- What’s with extremes?! Where is the balance between the two: great atmosphere and great haircut?! The balance is at Semion Barbershop, where professionals are not born but are made with a serious training program under the strict supervision of Semion Kikirov.
No need to try your luck at Russian Roulette. Just come to Semion Barbershop and become part of the Risk-Free Haircut Experience.
Click Here to read about Semion Guarantee.
Click Here to read about The Secret of Semion – Training Process.
Click Here to read what Former Employee Testimonials. We are proud but at the same time proud of the relationships that we have built over the years.