Man Up Hair and Body are a male-focussed salon in Christchurch, offering “the men’s premier grooming experience”. They offer men’s hair and beauty services, as well as TV, PlayStation, Free Wi-Fi, and complimentary drinks to all customers.
Man Up is run by Julie Depree, a qualified and experienced hairstylist. Julie started Man Up in 2009, when she was inspired to make a change in her career. She says the salon just keeps getting better.
“It's fantastic working alongside a team with common goals,” Julie says. “We care about what we do, and right now the business is the best it's ever been”.
Man Up offers both hair and beauty services. Haircuts are their most common request, Julie says, but their customers are also up for a facial, wax or a manicure on a regular basis. Julie’s business is buzzing.
Julie currently employs a mix of senior staff and apprentices. Although their focus is on men’s hair, they also offer women’s cuts and colours. Julie herself has plenty of experience in both men’s and women’s hairdressing. Developing her team is extremely important. Her staff are either qualified or on their way to being qualified, and Julie says it's vital to her and her business that they achieve their qualifications. Julie herself holds a National Certificate in Barbering (Level 3).
“Gaining a qualification is a great achievement,” Julie says. “They can wear it with pride”.
Training happens every day at Man Up. Julie spends time training her staff, and she also looks for training outside the salon. She puts in the time to make her staff the best, and she expects her staff to put in the same effort.
“I want them to be the best, so I have to put in the time to make that happen,” Julie says. “I want them to be receptive to training and engage with it”.
Staff engagement and enjoyment is paramount. No matter the service offered or the challenge faced, Julie says staff enjoyment is crucial to making it work.
One example of this is promotions. Man Up often offer promotions (for new and existing customers), and Julie says they are usually successful. They bring awareness to the brand and get people in the front door. But no matter the promotion, the whole team has to be on-board and enjoying it. That, Julie says, is what makes a promotion successful.
As with every business, running Man Up hasn’t been without its challenges. One of the biggest challenges was the Christchurch earthquake in 2011. The earthquake affected everyone, and Julie says it’s still affecting the city and its people. Despite this, Julie maintains a positive attitude.
“You have to adapt and get on with it,” Julie says. “Nothing stays the same, and that’s okay. Besides, the occasional failure heightens your appetite for success”.
Keeping a positive outlook and persevering despite challenges are vital for Julie and Man Up. It was this attitude that inspired her to start Man Up in the first place. She wanted to feel excited about the industry again, so she made that happen by starting her own salon.
Julie’s focussed on making her salon succeed. Although her goals for the business change regularly, her focus is always on doing what’s best for the business. She reviews her goals regularly and keeps focussed on success.
Julie’s success leaves her well placed to give some advice to other salon owners.
“Trust yourself,” she says. “Listen to your intuition. This is your business, so do what sits right for you."