Getting back to business in this COVID-19 world will not be an easy task.
Businesses and customers will need to partner together to minimize the spread of the virus.
As we navigate these uncharted waters together, it is important to lift up and celebrate the small businesses that are offering an exceptional customer experience AND enforcing high safety standards.
My First Non-Essential Customer Experience
On Tuesday, I ventured out for my first haircut in ten weeks. To be perfectly honest, I could have waited much longer for a cut, but my quarantine hair color (Country Dirt Road with Gravel highlights) was too much for me to bear any longer. I am not ashamed to say that this outing was based solely on vanity.
Admittedly, I was both nervous and uncertain about this non-essential appointment. Having seen DJ’s (my stylist’s) Facebook post with him wearing a face mask, I was confident that safety was a priority. Nevertheless, part of me worried that venturing out would spike my anxiety and that I wouldn’t feel safe.
About Timothy D’s, A Salon
Timothy D’s, A Salon is located on the fourth floor of an office building off Yale and I-25 in Denver, CO. The only way to gain access to the salon is to press the intercom at the main entrance to the building. When DJ gets the buzz upstairs, he is able to unlock the door remotely so can clients can open it. This procedure was in place prior to COVID-19 and is one that helped me feel safe when I arrived for my appointment.
COVID-19 Safety Precautions at Timothy D’s, A Salon
Inside the lobby of the office building, I saw a new hand sanitizer dispenser mounted to the wall. When I arrived on the fourth floor where the salon is located, I saw another newly mounted hand sanitizer station.
DJ’s assistant greeted me with a clipboard. She was wearing gloves and a mask. I read through the screening questions for COVID-19 symptoms, recent travel, and possible exposure to the virus. Answering each question took time, and I apologized for taking so long. DJ (also wearing a mask) told me there was no need for an apology. He had booked extra time for every client to make sure we could go through all of safety procedures.
DJ brought me a sanitized smock packaged in a pouch. He pointed to glass cubbies that were free of clutter, sanitized and ready to hold my belongings. He noticed my water bottle and let me know that if I needed to drink water and remove my mask, I would need to leave the area so that I didn’t risk exposure. Impressed by how thorough he was, I felt like my safety mattered to him as much as his own.
As DJ began to work on restoring my color, he was happy and positive. Not once did he make a negative comment about all that was required of him as a business owner now. He took pride in working with department of public health to make sure he was doing everything necessary to open his doors safely.
Above and Beyond Expectations
When it was time for me to sit in the lounge area and let the color process, I had a choice of three seats. All of the seats were leather and could be sanitized easily. Each seat had a set of footprints in front of it to mark the required amount of space for social distancing. One set of footprints was even made out of gold glitter!
As I waited, another client arrived for her service. I did not feel worried in the least. Each time I moved from one location to another (beauty chair, lounge area, and wash area) DJ’s assistant followed behind me with sanitizing spray. Every surface touched was cleaned immediately.
Leaving an Impression
DJ made me feel like my safety mattered to him. He welcomed me back with positive hospitality. I was impressed with his joyful attitude, and I had an exceptional experience. While I realize that COVID-19 safety guidelines don’t guarantee that I won’t catch the virus they do help me feel more secure in venturing back out into the world. As I begin to get out more, I will gladly support and highlight the businesses who are making my safety and theirs a priority.