After the long circuit breaker hiatus, my husband and I are finally back at the salon and we were greeted by overwhelmingly high demand. Our business reopened on 1st June as we had been receiving e-appointment requests from our clients who desperately needed a haircut and root retouch. At that time, the shopping mall we are located at was actually still closed and there was no AC at all. It was humid and we were perspiring like mad at work. We resorted to renting up to a total of seven portable ACs just to cool down the entire salon. Thankfully, our clients were very understanding about the situation.
Another issue we faced was there was only one way to get into the mall – through the loading bay cargo lift. Our clients are unfamiliar with the mall, plus there are usually 4 different entrances. Hence, I had to illustrate a map and take a walk along all the possible paths our clients would come from by various modes of transportation and MRT stations, just to snap photos to create a clearer guided route. We blasted these info to all our clients who had made appointments during the mall closure dates and also posted them on our social media platforms to help them find their way. Many of them actually gave feedback that it was like some maze runner, treasure hunting game. Haha!
Apart from all these location issues, we had shortage of staff as one of our team members was still stuck in Malaysia. We had been trying to apply for his return, and after rounds and rounds of rejection, we finally got an approval just three days ago! He is currently back serving his 14-day SHN at a dedicated facility. We can’t wait to meet him again after 4.5 months. It was a rather crazy experience for him. He had just simply gone back to his hometown to visit his parents back in March, and just 2 days before his scheduled return date, the country’s Movement Control Order was suddenly implemented. He tried to take the earliest bus back to SG but the customs was closed just 1 to 2 hours before he managed to reach JB. He couldn’t make it back in time and had to make a detour back home. A simple home visit turned out to be almost half a year gone.
I feel that all the new routine Check-in and Check-out procedures, daily temperature-taking, and sanitising of tools and work stations after every client, simply pale in comparison to all the other major problems we had faced. By now, we had already gotten used to this new normal.
In the salon, we had to block out 3 seats for safe-distancing management. Fewer seats means we will have to reduce appointment intake, which in turn, causes a longer waiting list for our clients. I feel very sorry every time I speak with them and they express their disappointment, but I can’t do anything to help improve the situation.
We just feel very blessed and are grateful for the continuous support from our clients during this difficult period. Praying hard that there won’t be a second wave and CB2.0.