Kao Salon Division, home of Goldwell, KMS and Oribe, introduces the Kao Salon Industry Recovery Initiative, a global/local program focused on helping salons recover and rebuild as they emerge from the COVID-19 crisis.
In times of crisis, true leaders never fail to emerge in support of those who are suffering, working relentlessly to rebuild and reassure a prosperous future for all. The COVID-19 pandemic is no different, and now Kao Salon Division, parent company of the Goldwell, KMS and Oribe haircare brands, has announced the roll-out of its Kao Salon Industry Recovery Initiative.
Estetica held a video-conference with Cory Couts, Global President, and John Moroney, VP Creative and Communication, to better understand the enormous potential of this program for the future of the salon industry, as well as what interim actions can be taken to mitigate the disastrous effects of the pandemic in terms of both business and morale.
The initiative consists of three carefully constructed support campaigns designed to address the unique challenges facing the industry and its professionals as they look to reopen. The program is tailored to provide industry professionals, both individually and collectively, with the critical resources they need to ensure their businesses are not only restored, but will be able to thrive in the months ahead.
Couts, a former salon manager himself, took the lead to talk about the first component of the initiative, dubbed STRONGER TOGETHER. This pillar is based on the belief that no individual or organization alone holds the key to success, but that by truly working together, the industry will be able to make a successful recovery.
#StrongerTogether represents Kao Salon’s financial support and unwavering partnership. In tangible terms, that amounts to the company’s commitment on various levels, including the suspension of invoices until local government salon closure orders are lifted and donations to local charity and trade organisations already structured to help those most in need. Salon customers will also be assisted in developing support plans to boost business upon reopening, while consumers themselves will be targeted by the #WorthTheWait campaign, encouraging them to resist the urge to take DIY measures and wait instead for their trusted stylists.
Couts proudly explains, “All of our sales and education teams are still employed with us, and are working hard to fulfill the needs of partner salons during this period.”
Moroney then spoke to the second pillar, CREATIVITY NEVER STOPS, underscoring that Kao Salon inherently understands that the expression of creativity is the lifeblood of this industry. #CreativityNeverStops enables stylists to immediately nurture and hone their skills through access to digital and online education programs, offering relief and inspiration to stylists confined to their homes.
“Many hairdressers are especially frustrated because their creative gears are still turning, but their platform and the tools of their trade are locked up in their salons,” Moroney adds, “So we are working to create a forum where they are inspired to creatively express themselves and tap into their passion.”
To further stimulate this process, the annual Goldwell Global Creative Awards, originally slated to be presented in Amsterdam, will be transmitted virtually this year, eliminating all of the obstacles that might preclude the community from participating. In addition, entry deadlines have been postponed to the end of July. In the meantime, Kao is pushing the boundaries to ensure that the event will be so much more than “just a webcast,” adds Couts.
Most of all, both Cory Couts and John Moroney stressed the importance of the KAO SALON FAMILY, a reminder that Kao Salon will remain steadfast in their objective to support the recovery of every individual business. Couts describes how this concept was inspired by the stylist community themselves. “They were the ones who originally referred to us as ‘one big family’,” he recalls. Hence, this third pillar will act as a beacon of solidarity, offering constant virtual support while delivering messages of hope and positivity through Kao Salon’s robust network of digital and social channels. Stylists and salons are also invited and encouraged to share their concerns and questions directly to company leadership, thereby triggering dialogue, exchanges, and even moral support.
“Our priority during this crisis has been to galvanize our efforts around the full and complete recovery of the industry as a whole, with special focus our partners and stylists,” says Cory Couts, Global President, Kao Salon Division. “We know the needs and concerns of the salon community are very specific. That’s why we designed this initiative to not only to commit global resources, but to implement local solutions for their recovery. We believe in the power of the collective and know that by meeting this incredibly powerful community where they are, and joining them on their journey, together we will grow, rise and create the future.”