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Do You Barter?
#1
This came up a few days ago as I was talking with a fellow tech. A former colleague received an opportunity to work with a major manufacturer as an educator a few years back, which was a great career move for her. When we worked in the salon together, we always did each other's nails and shared tech tips. I firmly believe that every professional has a professional. Not to mention I've learned a lot from other techs that I have bartered with in the past.

Since she began educating, she no longer welcomes the idea of bartering as she does not believe in giving anything away for free. Don't get me wrong, I have invested lots of dollars into my education, so I can understand to a degree. However, we have a history and a friendship - or so I thought. I was taken aback when she expected me to pay her high prices; it just seemed a bit unreasonable to me. Her prices are much higher now because she's an educator, but I'm not sure her work/skill level matches what she's charging. ($45 for a manicure/$75 for a pedicure)

This really bothers me because as a result of this, we really don't speak too often. Since I'm not a paying customer, she waves me off whenever I make an attempt to get together with her. Again, if I'm not paying for her time I am not important. Am I wrong and should I expect to pay for her services now because she is an educator?

What's your take on this? I would love to hear from some of the educators out there.

Chrissy
http://www.lovethosetoes.com
Bowie, MD
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#2
Hi Chrissy...Im not an educator at this time but once was during my 20+ yrs in the nail bizness...but..If its a product Im selling...I do Not discount..but if its my services for a friend/nail tech i would either Not charge or charge below average prices..
what i have learned is everyone handles this differently..
I am also a vendor at various trade shows & festivals & where i believe in giving discounts to fellow vendors, many do not...i get charged full price when i want to support a fellow vendor of their product...I pay it because i want the product but i feel some type of way cause i feel there should be an unspoken language among those of us in the bizness..
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#3
Chrissy, I have mixed emotions about this. Firstly I think it beholds experienced techs to share a bit of knowledge and mentor at times. But I also think this is an industry that expects a lot for free - starting with the nail mags that don't pay the nail techs for their cover work, but presumably pay the photographer, stylist, make-up artist etc. Or competition judges who are expected to pay their flights, hotels, etc and give up their time. Or those friends who want nails for free. Or techs who expect goodie bags to go to an event where free education is included..

We want this to be a professional industry, but at times we are are I think our own worse enemies. I guess in all things there has to be a balance.

Bob
Iryna Giblett Nail Products Inc., Sweden
http://www.irynagiblett.com
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#4
Personally I prefer not to barter, because my criteria is, if i wouldnt pay cash for something i wont barter for it, and if i would pay cash... then i do. I think that bartering is fine between professionals as long as both parties are interested. It sounds like she's no longer interested, so I would say that yes, it's unreasonable to demand/expect a barter just because she's done it in the past. Is it possible she's waving you off because she's uncomfortable that you keep asking for a barter? I don't know your situation, but personally I would avoid someone who is asking more than I want to give (or barter) - even if its a friend - because I think boundaries are important. Hope you find someone else who is like minded to trade with.
Candice
Nail Tech/Owner
http://www.PanacheNailStudio.com
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#5
Thanks so much for the feedback so far everyone.

@Bob - I guess i didn't think about it that way. Definitely allows me to see things from a different perspective. You are right, people do tend to expect a lot of free goodies and services in our industry. I promised myself this year that I wouldn't give away "free" stuff but focus more on add-ons instead. It allows client to see that I know the value of my work. I used to give away free items to new clients, but most wouldn't re-book on a consistent basis because they only wanted the "free" stuff. It's okay to reward loyal clients, so you're right when you say there needs to be some balance. Thank you!!

@Candice - thank you for your honesty. I have to meet you one day -you give the best advice! It's on my nail tech bucket list! ;-)

It is not a situation where I keep asking, it's actually far few and in between. But you are absolutely correct - she is not interested. She waves me off because she feels that doing anything for anyone who isn't a paying customer is "beneath her" so to speak. I recently met with her former business adviser (and paying client) who helped her get her business off the ground. Once she started becoming well known in the industry, she started canceling her appointments and giving her the brush off as well. Then I realized it's not just me. So I decided to leave well alone. I agree that boundaries are important, so I need to respect hers. I guess I was surprised that her new found success changed the person that I knew her to be.

Chrissy
http://www.lovethosetoes.com
Bowie, MD
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#6
I'm flattered beyond anything to be on anyone's bucket list! Smile It's unlikely that her new found success changed her, it probably just revealed her.

Candice
Nail Tech/Owner
http://www.PanacheNailStudio.com
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#7
I barter for my hair color and dog grooming. I have to say that the other tech's attitude isn't going to take her far in the biz. Word gets out, and if she's pulling that Diva stuff with her co., then sooner or later it's going to catch up to her. She'll get the big head, thinking she's too good for that co. and move on. Trouble is, once you burn your bridges, you're OUT! No one will touch you after that....
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#8
(03-16-2013, 01:00 PM)Donna in Huntsville, TX. Wrote: I barter for my hair color and dog grooming. I have to say that the other tech's attitude isn't going to take her far in the biz. Word gets out, and if she's pulling that Diva stuff with her co., then sooner or later it's going to catch up to her. She'll get the big head, thinking she's too good for that co. and move on. Trouble is, once you burn your bridges, you're OUT! No one will touch you after that....


I just offered to barter for dog walking!
NY Licensed Nail + Waxing Tech
Owner/Developer Suite Tee
http://www.Facebook.com/TashawnaH
Instagram: @SuiteTee
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#9
I barter for hair color/cut/style, beef, lol. advertising, photography, cleaning, etc...
Brenda
Electrologist 30
Nail tech 3 years
Fairytale Nails (Bring on the bling)

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Brenda-Loc...1768602978
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#10
Thanks so much for your replies everyone! @ nailfun - cracking up about all the things you barter for.....go girl! lol

Chrissy
http://www.lovethosetoes.com
Bowie, MD
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#11
I used to barter with my hairstylist. She did my hair, I did her nails. We both won.
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#12
I used to barter with my hair stylist too, that was a win-win! She wanted to stop getting her nails done when I moved up North, and said she would understand if I wanted to find someone else to barter with, but NO WAY, I won't switch unless she's unavailable to me. The beef has me thinking... too bad the place we buy our organic 1/4 beef from lives two hours away! Smile
Candice
Nail Tech/Owner
http://www.PanacheNailStudio.com
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