Saturday, July 24, 2010

All About Attitude

Jerry is the manager of a restaurant.

He is always in a good mood and always has something positive to say. When someone would ask him how he was doing, he would always reply, "If I were any better, I would be twins!" Many of the waiters at his restaurant quit their jobs when he changed jobs so they could follow him around from restaurant to restaurant.

The reason the waiters followed Jerry was because of his attitude.

He was a natural motivator. If an employee was having a bad day, Jerry was always there telling the employee how to look on the positive side of the situation. Seeing this style really made me curious, so one day I went up to Jerry and asked him, "I don't get it! No one can be a positive person all of the time.

How do you do it?"

Jerry replied, "Each morning I wake up and say to myself, I have two choices today. I can choose to be in a good mood or I can choose to be in a bad mood. I always choose to be in a good mood.

"Each time something bad happens, I can choose to be a victim or I can choose to learn from it. I always choose to learn from it.”

"Every time someone comes to me complaining, I can choose to accept their complaining or I can point out the positive side of life. I always choose the positive side of life."

"But it's not always that easy," I protested.

"Yes, it is," Jerry said. "Life is all about choices. When you cut away all the junk, every situation is a choice.”

"You choose how you react to situations. You choose how people will affect your mood. You choose to be in a good mood or a bad mood. It's your choice how you live your life."

Several years later, I heard that Jerry accidentally did something you are never supposed to do in the restaurant business. He left the back door of his restaurant open one morning and was robbed by three armed men.

While trying to open the safe, his hand, shaking from nervousness slipped off the combination. The robbers panicked and shot him.

Luckily, Jerry was found quickly and rushed to the hospital. After 18 hours of surgery and weeks of intensive care, Jerry was released from the hospital with fragments of the bullets still in his body.

I saw Jerry about six months after the accident. When I asked him how he was, he replied, "If I were any better, I'd be twins. Want to see my scars?" I declined to see his wounds but did ask him what had gone through his mind as the robbery took place.

"The first thing that went through my mind was that I should have locked the back door," Jerry replied. "Then, after they shot me, as I lay on the floor, I remembered that I had two choices: I could choose to live or choose to die. I chose to live."

"Weren't you scared?" I asked. Jerry continued, "The paramedics were great. They kept telling me I was going to be fine. But when they wheeled me into the Emergency Room and I saw the expressions on the faces of the doctors and nurses, I got really scared.

"In their eyes, I read, 'He's a dead man.' I knew I needed to take action."

"What did you do?" I asked. "Well, there was a big nurse shouting questions at me," said Jerry. "She asked if I was allergic to anything."

'Yes,' I replied. The doctors and nurses stopped working as they waited for my reply. I took a deep breath and yelled, 'Bullets!'

"Over their laughter, I told them, 'I am choosing to live. Please operate on me as if I am alive, not dead.'"

Jerry lived thanks to the skill of his doctors but also because of his amazing attitude. I learned from him that every day you have the choice to either enjoy your life or to hate it.

The only thing that is truly yours that no one can control or take from you - is your attitude, so if you can take care of that, everything else in life becomes much easier.

~Author Unknown~


Friday, July 23, 2010

How to teach children the value of money

Children start learning about money and how they value it early in life. They learn to be stressed about money if the adults in their life are stressed about money. Or, they learn "money grows on trees" because they get everything they ever wanted.

I did some research on how parents teach their children about money. To them, the most important lesson on how to teach children the value of money is being a good model - practice what you preach. Parents should have a good grasp on money management before you begin teaching this concept to your children. You should be knowledgeable enough about saving, budgeting or investing money.

Here are some examples:

One couple helped their 8th grade daughter open a checking account and had an allowance deposited (like getting a paycheck) each month. The amount of the allowance was jointly decided on by the parents and daughter. It was determined by money needed to cover clothing, activities and other routine expenses. Their daughter learned about balancing her checkbook, ATM fees and overdrafts while having guidance from her parents.
This same eight grader opened a credit card account. This was an opportunity to teach about late charges if the bill did not get paid by the due date and how interest can accumulate, all while these amounts were relatively small. These parents did make it very clear if the balance was not paid by the due date she would lose the card.

One family used eating at restaurants as a way to teach their children about the value of money. When the check came to the table, the children added it up to make sure it was correct and figured out the tip. Then the children would bring the money to the cashier.
In one family pizza was always the Friday night treat. Dad would only let them order pizza if they could come up with a pizza coupon. There were always pizza coupons to be found in desk drawer by the phone in this home.

Another family planned their vacations with their children. They let them in on how much they had to spend on lodging, transportation, meals and entertainment. They showed them choices available. This helped their children see the trade offs such as a week of camping versus a shorter visit to Disneyland.
To make saving money an incentive parents in one family offered to match savings. This worked well to encourage their children to save a portion of their allowance or save all or part of gift money from grandparents for something special they wanted.

On turning sixteen a son in one of the families wanted a car. His parents were agreeable, if he paid for it. After weeks of looking and not coming up with an affordable solution, their son thought of calling family friends who had recently purchased a new car and hadn't sold the old one. The good news was, the car was for sale. The bad news was it wasn't running. For a $1 and towing fee, the car was his. He used savings and his own income to get it running. The parents have fond memories of their son and his friends hanging out in the car parked in their driveway for a full day even though it was not drivable yet. The car became a family legend and the son learned about the value of money.

These stories show how life on a daily basis offers many opportunities to teach the value of money with regard to choices and trade offs. It is important to stick to boundaries originally agreed upon. It is easy out of love or just less hassle to take care of money mistakes children/teens make. Instead, acknowledge their dilemma and ask them for their solutions.
Recommended reading for the next bedtime story is The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason. This is an inspirational book about the secrets to acquiring money, keeping money and making money earn more money. This is a great story to share with children. Sweet dreams and prosperity!

Source:; Image by Timeout Kids

Monday, July 5, 2010

How to start a salon business

Almost every mall in Metro Manila is said to have two to eight beauty salons.

According to the 1999 Job Demand Survey of the Levittown Beauty Academy, salon owners receive an average of 174 clients a week. But a chair, a mirror and a pair of scissors are not the only things you’ll need if you want to start a salon business.

Lidwina Morales, owner of Lid Salon in Malate, Manila, invested P500,000 initially on equipment and her parlor’s interior. Janett Pineda, a franchisee of David’s Salon in San Pedro, Laguna, bought the franchise for P2 million and took over the parlor in November 2002.

But you need not spend big bucks right away. Patrick Bishop, author of Money-tree Marketing, says “Don’t overspend. Buy used equipment or rent a space that was a beauty salon previously, but is vacant and includes all the equipment.”

Pick your location well

In a salon business, you must pick your location carefully. One won’t go wrong picking a mall. You'd also want to cater from Class A to C. Spend time looking for a good location and an area that would give you a comfortable size. Consider a place near a restaurant so that it would be convenience for your customers to buy snacks in case they get hungry. It’s also a good idea to pick an area with lots of foot traffic if you think you’ll depend on walk-in clients.

Invest in good equipment

It’s better to buy good used equipment if you can get it. If you prefer new supplies, shops like Hortaleza and Accessories and Beauty Equipment stock everything you are likely to need. It is also important to buy high-quality shampoos and chemicals for nail care, hair treatment and coloring to please your clients. Try to charge reasonable rates, but do not compromise on quality.

Train your staff

Now it’s time to recruit good people for your parlor. Your staff should have the technical expertise especially in hair coloring and styling using international standards as a benchmark. They have to undergo regular training to update them on new products, hairstyles and customer service.

Ricky Reyes Learning Institute offers a three-month cosmetology course that costs P14,900 and includes hair cutting, coloring, perming, styling, make-up, manicure and facial treatment. The Classic School of Cosmetology in Binondo, Manila, offers short courses in hair coloring, blow drying and scalp manipulation, among other things, for P1,500 to P4,000.

Salon franchises take care of personnel training and provide equipment and supplies. They take care of almost everything—even bookkeeping and accounting and the preparation of the payroll. You just wait for your monthly dividend. It’s up to the owner if he wants to visit the parlor once in a while.

It’s important to keep your employees happy to avoid high staff turnover. You may consider giving them salaries apart from commissions. Salon Studio follows a chart system where suppliers reward parlor staff selling their products.

Price your services well

Salon Studio uses celebrities like MTV videodisc jockey Donita Rose and former Binibining Pilipinas-World Daisy Reyes to promote the chain. Reyes Haircutters believes in charging minimal fees for maximum profit. Continuous research is very important to know the latest trends. Think how can you innovate.

According to Les Reyes, founder of the Reyes Haircutters chain of beauty salons, there are a few things you must know about the business before investing in it:

  • Naming your salon after yourself may not work in the long run. There are icons in the beauty salon business who have successfully built a business around their names. The downside is when they die or grow old, says Les Reyes.
  • Find your niche. Your target market will determine your choice of location, pricing, promotion strategies, and brand image. Reyes Haircutters is very clear about its market positioning—it’s a clean, well-designed salon offering quality services to the masses, and it doesn’t compete directly with Ricky Reyes and David’s.
  • Conduct your promotions during lean hours. Few customers usually come in between nine in the morning and two in the afternoon. To boost business during off-peak hours, Reyes Haircutters offers 40-percent discounts to senior citizens and free haircuts to infants.
  • Keep a profile of each customer. Les Reyes plans to develop a card that will carry valuable facts on each customer. If a client’s regular hairdresser is absent when she visits the salon, whoever assists her simply swipes her card on the computer to obtain information on her preferred services, likes and dislikes.
  • Assign a person to handle inventory control. Assign accountability for releasing parlor supplies to a stock clerk. He alone should have access to your inventory to make it easier to prevent or control pilferage.
  • Measure the amount of chemicals needed for each type of service. Know, for example, the number of haircuts and hot oil treatments you can provide using one bottle of shampoo and moisturizer.
  • Be a hands-on manager. How much money you make is a function of the amount of time you spend in the salon. You have to be there because it will greatly affect the sales, the energy and the customer service, among others.
source:; photo from

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