Ep 12 - Poor Retail Sales? Not Anymore with Expert Advice from Maxine Drake

Maxine Drake

Strong retail sales skills are more important than ever, as stay-at-home orders have proven. What is really holding you back from having amazing retail sales skills? Maxine Drake, well-known beauty business coach and contributing author of The Esthetician’s Guide To Outstanding Esthetics, asks all the questions you need to ask yourself. Poor retail sales numbers aren’t a result of clients’ lack of interest or income. Listen as we discuss how to improve your retail skills and in turn improve your retail sales.

00:01 Maxine Drake: You are listening to ASCP Esty Talk, where we share insider tips, industry resources and education for estheticians at every stage of the journey. Let's talk, because ASCP knows it's all about you. Hi guys, and welcome to ASCP Esty Talk: Back to Business. Let your setback be your comeback. I'm your host, Tracy Donley, Executive Director of ASCP. And today we are joined by Maxine Drake. You all know her, she's a well-known beauty business coach, contributing author to the Estheticians Guide to Outstanding Aesthetics and, she'll probably tell us more about this in a little bit, Maxine is also the creator of the Beauty Business Summit. So welcome to the show, Maxine.

00:49 Tracy Donley: Oh my gosh, Tracy, thank you so much for having me. I'm looking forward to inspiring your tribe.

00:55 MD: I love it. Well, let me first ask you, how are you feeling right now with everything going on? Are you feeling optimistic? Are you pessimistic? What's your vibe?

01:06 TD: Oh my gosh, that is like I can't even believe that you used the word "feeling". Because what's... It's so true, because what's going on in the world, of course in our industry as well, but in the world is that emotions are heightened right now. And how people are responding and reacting to what's going on has a lot to do with their emotions, right?

01:33 MD: Yeah.

01:33 TD: So it's become very emotional. I'm doing things to keep myself nurtured because I'm doing so much output for my own tribe, right? So it's really important to make sure that you do things to keep your own self upbeat, and go for walks and get outside and exercise and try not to eat so much, which I have totally done. But it's those kinds of things, so just make sure that you're filling the well.

02:04 MD: Well, let's elaborate a little bit on that.

02:07 TD: Okay.

02:07 MD: I know all of us have been... I know I definitely have, have maybe one guilty pleasure that we've developed, maybe it's a bad habit during quarantine or during the stay at home orders. What's yours?

02:21 TD: Shoveling food in my face, basically.


02:24 TD: Okay? Okay, here's another thing, I've been used to working at home for the past four years, running a digital business, but I'm not used to my husband being home.

02:34 MD: Oh, I hear you.

02:36 TD: He loves to cook. So where I would normally eat whatever, I have my own little thing, he's busy cooking, my olfactory is going crazy, and I just am so responsible for shoving food in my own face, okay?

02:51 MD: I so agree. I'm eating things I never thought that I would eat. I'm developing a sweet tooth and I never thought I would have that.

03:00 TD: Yeah. So it's called emotional eating.


03:02 MD: Okay. Okay, get to label it.

03:04 TD: Yeah, we get to label it. But I'm also being proactive. I'm like, "You know what? I did 15 miles on my bike today, so... "

03:11 MD: Oh, that's awesome, Maxine. Look at you.

03:14 TD: Yeah.

03:16 MD: Okay, so we'll offset that with... Share something positive that you've learned about yourself with our listeners.

03:25 TD: Something positive that I have learned about myself is my superpower and the ability to shift. Sometimes there's all kinds of self-doubt and we're sometimes our own self-critic, or we go through imposter syndrome or whatever it may be. And I think that during this time, I have really embraced that power to have the ability to shift. I'm not losing sight of my end goal in my business, but I'm shifting how I get there.

04:00 MD: I like it. Okay, that's good, that is a superpower. Alright, so now we're gonna jump into the nitty-gritty. What can estheticians do now to help prepare their business for rapid recovery when they reopen?

04:18 TD: Well, that's kind of a two-part question.

04:20 MD: Yeah, it's a big one. Take it in for a second.


04:22 TD: Yeah, I was like, "Uhh... " It's like, we should already be doing.

04:28 MD: Yeah, say it.

04:29 TD: You know what I mean?

04:30 MD: Yes.

04:30 TD: There's no... We just can't... There's that ability to also... A solopreneur, you went out on your own because you wanted to have your own business, you wanted to live your life on your own terms, and now there's been this wake-up call of you have to shift too. And not lose sight of your dream and your vision and everything that you wanted to create for your clients, but now there's just different ways to reach your clients and create those sales. And so it's partly that, and then it's partly... And not losing sight of that. So I'll just say it out, I'll just say it. We've gotta have a virtual presence. And I don't necessarily just mean having your e-commerce store up. Because you don't just put your e-commerce store up and be like, "Alright, the storefront's up. Alright, where's the people?"

05:32 MD: If you build it, they will come.

05:34 TD: No, no, no, no, no, it takes doing sales webinars and online consultations. You've helped people put together reopening standard operating procedures. I've done the same. Just to get the wheels turning of how you're going to do things different once you open. And also, what's still gonna be a part of your business model even though you're going to see clients? Because that virtual model still needs to exist. Does that make sense?

06:10 MD: Yes. No, I love that. So let's take that another step further.

06:14 TD: Okay.

06:15 MD: 'Cause I'm kinda seeing where you're taking that. So why are retail sales, good retail sales, more important than ever? And what does that look like? Walk us through that.

06:28 TD: Well, let's face it, Tracy. If we do the numbers on our business and we take a look at the service dollars coming in, once expenses are paid and paying ourself, there's very little left over in the service dollar.

06:45 MD: True, yeah.

06:45 TD: And so the retail sales are what keep the doors open. They keep the doors open. And here's the beautiful thing about retail sales as you could... And as a solo, and my solos rock it. You solos kick some serious butt out there because...

07:06 MD: Yeah, they do.

07:07 TD: I've seen retail sales and service sales per month be the same. Where it's like the same amount. And so if you could just imagine, if you're bringing in $10,000 in service sales a month as a solo practitioner, which is totally doable because I used to do it myself and I'm not special, right?

07:31 MD: [laughter] Like you are special.

07:33 TD: And then... No. But then now you're bringing in $10,000 a month in retail sales without bending over, without killing yourself, without the wear and tear on your body. That is something we've gotta pay attention to.

07:47 MD: So true. Yeah, for sure. So we've been talking about it quite a bit, when we're talking about back to practice, I think that there's gonna be more times that we have back to practice because we're gonna have other times that we might have stay-at-home orders again. So with that in mind, give us some tips or some insights as to how people can kind of beef up their retail sales skills.

08:16 TD: I don't wanna be redundant, there's so much great information out there, like just all these processes to do, but here's the simple truth, Tracy, and a lot of estheticians, and I don't even wanna just pick on estheticians, service providers have a hang-up on being salesy and retail sales and just that whole thing. So what I recommend is you gotta take a look at, "What is the issue with you and money?"

08:48 MD: Like what your hang-up is, personally?

08:50 TD: Yes. We gotta do it. If anything that COVID has taught us is to go inward a little bit and take a little look at, "What's going on there internally? And what is my hang-up about sales and money and projecting?" 'Cause projection is perception. So if we're projecting out there that, "Oh, well, this client can't buy, they can't afford it." We're already creating a story.

09:17 MD: Yeah.

09:18 TD: And then so now that is the perception that you are going to live by. So clean up your own money issues, and your own story that you have around sales. Because sales is just a transfer of energy. If you're not in rapport with your client, can a sale happen?

09:40 MD: No.

09:40 TD: Absolutely.

09:42 MD: Yeah, if you don't have that rapport and that trust. And I think that's the thing. That's such a good point, Maxine, because I think every single esthetician that I've talked to, that's the first thing they wanna talk about, that they're missing so much is that relationship with their clients. And so that rapport is important, right? Talk about that relationship and maybe help demystify what that looks like when you're asking for a sale.

10:13 TD: Sure. Absolutely, Tracy. Because when you are in really good rapport with your client and you are recommending whatever, now it's you are either going to sell them on that said product or they are gonna sell you on their reasons.

10:34 MD: Oh, that's interesting. Oh, that's an interesting relationship that you just laid out there.

10:41 TD: It's really true.

10:43 MD: Yeah.

10:43 TD: So it's really good to have... I always say, "With better awareness allows for better decisions, and better decisions always brings a better outcome." Right?

10:51 MD: Yeah.

10:52 TD: So now with your own awareness of, "Am I in rapport with someone?" We have to be in rapport with someone, that trust has to be there. And in that, we have to be so focused on what their problems are. What problems are they having with their skin? And it could be a service sale too. A service sale and a retail sale. But if we can match our service or product to their problem, we've sold them.

11:31 MD: And it's not that you're selling them even. You're doing them a favor, right? In the sense that you want them to fix or improve their skin.

11:42 TD: It's so true. But again, I was running around the neighborhood, kind of going back to the SOPs and that whole trust thing, and I was asking different age groups in my community that's rather upscale, that all get services from hair to skin. And I'm like, "What would you like to see your service provider do to make you feel safe when you go back to see them?" And they were like, "Oh, I already trust them. I know they're gonna be... "

12:09 MD: Oh yeah, I know. Isn't that crazy? That's what you're hearing from everybody. Like, "I know they're good."

12:15 TD: Right. Like, "I know the protocols are gonna be in place. They don't have to prove anything to me." And so when you have that kind of rapport... If you're not in rapport with someone to make the sale, then what you need to do is take a step back and go, "How can I get a better rapport with this person before I start offering them stuff?"

12:40 MD: So give us some examples of how someone could get in better rapport? I know that it's personal, but just kind of lay down some ideas for us there.

12:50 TD: Well, it boils down to communication, right? And what's the most important part in communication?

12:58 MD: Listening.

13:00 TD: Yes, ma'am. Yes ma'am. And so watch yourself and ask yourself, "Am I really listening or am I gearing up to give my pitch on the product?" Do you know what I mean?

13:19 MD: Yeah.

13:20 TD: And so to get in rapport, it's like, we're paying attention to so many things, it's not just dialogue. It's body language. 70% of communication is body language.

13:34 MD: It's so true, it's so true. And where their eyes are?

13:37 TD: Yeah. If they're looking at their watch, and they're like... You've wrapped up your appointment, and they have to get to a soccer game for their son, and you're like, "But let me just show you these five... " They're like, "Girl, I gotta run." We can see when a person is already at their next thing, right?

14:00 MD: Yeah.

14:01 TD: So is that a good time to try to pitch to them? And I'm gonna use these words, 'cause I don't want you to be afraid of these words 'cause that's what we're doing. We're buying and selling all day long with everyone. It doesn't matter if it's a movie recommendation, a restaurant, or an idea.

14:19 MD: Well, I'm buying and selling all day long with my husband and my kids, so that's real.

14:24 TD: Yeah. It's so real. It's so real. And so I think what's happened with COVID is, it has... Estheticians awareness now are like, "Wow, I need to step up my game with retail because if I don't, I'm not gonna make it." It's awesome because they're stepping out of their own comfort zone because they're fighting for their business right now.

14:52 MD: Well, with that being said, what do you think about... If people haven't been able to reopen their business yet, what do you think about doing virtual skin care consultations? You mentioned that the consultation is the most important part.

15:08 TD: It is, because we're not asking always the right questions. We're getting all knee-deep in the medical, which is great. I don't want you to skip it...

15:17 MD: 'Cause we kinda have to a little bit right now.

15:20 TD: You have to. But you can't forget the marketing questions.

15:26 MD: Well, what are those questions? When you say marketing questions, give us some example of a couple of those.

15:33 TD: Yes. It's more or less asking that, and then the problem. "So check all the boxes that apply. Check all the services that interest you." So now you have an idea of cross marketing. "Tell me more." So now when you're in that consult with that person, now that's dialogue. "So tell me more about this. And talk to me more about that." And asking more open-ended questions, and not closed questions. And a closed question will be a yes or no answer. We want to get them talking.

16:10 MD: And developing rapport, right? It comes back to your rapport.

16:14 TD: Yes, it does.

16:16 MD: I'm starting to see a trend here.

16:18 TD: All day long, all day long. Because people come to you first, and your craft, second.

16:25 MD: Interesting. So our person. They come to our person first. Is that what you're saying?

16:31 TD: They do. We're all unique. We're so unique, Tracy. And they are coming to you first.

16:40 MD: So I think with estheticians are thinking about that first, that should elevate kind of the place that they're coming from, right? And give them a feeling of confidence to make these recommendations for retail.

16:55 TD: Yeah, there is that. "What can they be doing now?" You asked that question and it's like, staying in rapport means staying in communication. And I realize that we have our up and down days ourselves, so make sure it's a day where you're feeling uplifted and you're feeling good to either reach out via text, or phone, or email. And I always say, communicate with your clients the way they wish to communicate, not the way you wanna communicate.

17:29 MD: That is such a good point. So if an older client prefers phone calls because that feels meaningful, then it should be a phone call, not a text. Right?

17:40 TD: Absolutely. And you have the time now. So go through your client list, who haven't you seen, call them up. And if you feel like, "Gosh, I've kind of been out of rapport" don't beat yourself up, just start calling today. It'll be okay, and they're gonna be so excited to hear from you.

18:03 MD: I think those are really great tips, I love that. And it sounds like it's never too late. Don't worry, it's never too late.

18:10 TD: It's never too late. And remember, it's not just industry-specific to what's going on. Everybody is going through the same thing, so we have that common ground. It would just be like me going, "Gosh, Tracy, how are you doing with all of this?" That's a common... That's a conversation starter. Like, "What's going on in your family?"

18:31 MD: Yeah, everyone wants to talk about that. Yeah.

18:33 TD: Totally. And then you can go from there, if there's anything that they need. But as far as the virtual presence, things that you could be doing, of course, email marketing. Clean up your email list, separate it out to waxing clients, to skin clients, to microderm, to microcurrent, whatever, and segment everybody out. Get clean up your list, get them organized. Do webinars, do live streams, and I know some of you may cringe like, "Oh my God, I don't wanna get on video." I know.

19:10 MD: Get on video. Get out of those sweatpants or those jammy bottoms and put on a face.

19:16 MD: That's it.

19:18 TD: Well, okay. Let's assume that we have gotten everybody who is nervous to sell and we've changed their minds. That they know, that they're like, "Where I'm gonna sell, I know that this is important for the success of my business and my career." Where should an independent esthetician start? Can you share some tips with us as it relates to questions that they should be asking maybe the product manufacturers? What does an opening order look like? How do they figure all that out? How many lines should they carry? Anything that you could share with us.

20:00 MD: How many lines? I really say one to two lines for retail, and you're gonna ask me why. Why do I believe that? And the truth is, is that it shows where your belief system is.

20:15 TD: Oh. So it's about you. It's kind of about what you believe in.

20:20 MD: Right. And so if you're not all over the board, the client's not gonna be all over the board. And I realize we need different things in our treatment room, I was the same. And I needed certain things in the back bar but I didn't always retail. I only sold one line when I was in practice.

20:40 TD: Hey guys, stop. Let's take a quick break.


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21:32 TD: Let's get back to the conversation. If you were to share with us now, what would that line that... And you can share what line it was if you want to or not, but what would that line say about you and your beliefs as it relates to professional skin care?

21:48 MD: I will share because it was Catherine Atzen. And our spa sold so much that we got a personal visit from her.

22:00 TD: Oh, wow.

22:01 MD: It was amazing and I will never forget that. But it was unique, it wasn't saturated, no one else really had it around in my area, and these are the little things that you wanna... You don't wanna be another "me too" with like every spa...

22:18 TD: That's a great point. Yeah.

22:20 MD: On the block that has the same thing. Find out what your core values and your beliefs are. I think when we go in these forums and we're like, "What line do you have?" it's like, "No. What do you believe in?" and, "What's your strategy?" Because if you wanna take a holistic approach or if you want a more chemical, that's so cool. It's you, right?

22:44 TD: That's you, yeah. By choosing whatever line you choose, you're projecting your personality and your beliefs. And I think that's really a cool way. So it's not just about, "Oh, this is the least expensive." Or, "I think my clients can afford this." Or, "The buy-in initial order is the cheapest." So that's why I'm loving what you're saying. This is great.

23:12 MD: And the other things that you wanna look at are, is that manufacturer's core values in alignment with yours? What is their education like? Are they constantly running out of stuff? Be an investigator and do some investigation on a couple of brands or manufacturers to see. And I'm always looking at that. There was a line that didn't treat me so well back then, and so I rocked it with this other line. They have no idea what I could miss...

23:49 TD: What they missed out on?

23:50 MD: Right. But it's okay. And I was just like, "Okay, that was all... " I just paid attention to everything. And I think people's true colors are really being... You can really see them now, 'cause we always see them in a crisis.

24:06 TD: So true.

24:07 MD: It's easy to be on good behavior when everything is going well.

24:15 TD: If you wouldn't mind just elaborating a little bit on the education that you would like to see from the line that you are bringing into your spa, what should they be looking for as far as education?

24:31 MD: I think the days of reps visiting us once a week, that's all long gone. I think the brands that are embracing the digital spaces well and providing as much digital... Like you guys. You guys rock it. You have so...

24:49 TD: Thanks. We're trying.

24:49 MD: I know. So that's it. Estheticians just wanna feel loved. They wanna feel appreciated. They're investing in these brands and they wanna be treated well. And the education is a big part for estheticians, so make it readily available. Don't make them jump through hoops and all this stuff. Make it readily available for them. Do you have to know every single little ingredient? No. But you have to know enough about your brand to be able to talk about how you can solve a problem for a client.

25:31 TD: Are there any questions, very specific questions, that you should be asking a skin care product vendor before you sign with them?

25:42 MD: Probably all of those things. "What kind of support do I get? If I'm doing events, do you support me with samples and brochures and things like that?"

25:52 TD: I think that's a big one. Yeah.

25:54 MD: It's a big one. I don't think it should necessarily be around an opening order minimum. I think we put too much importance on that. And if we're gonna be opening up for business, we have to understand that a big cost of doing business is investing in the brand that you love. And if it has an opening order that intimidates you, do what you can to work to make it happen.

26:24 TD: Yeah, work with them. And especially now, I think a lot of brands might be saying, "Okay, we're open for a conversation right now."

26:33 MD: They are, and they're doing dropship. Now, am I happy for that right now, because now a solo doesn't have to have that liability on their shelves? You don't have to have a ton of liability on your shelves. Not as a solo. You're not Macy's. You're not Bath & Body Works. They have six month's supply, that's not you. And you have three to five of your top sellers that you should never run out of, because then you'd be losing a sale. But take advantage of the dropship now, but use it as a crutch, not as a... Don't make this...

27:11 TD: A way of business.

27:12 MD: Right. Exactly.

27:13 TD: Yeah, I think it's interesting. I think dropship is great. Some of the product manufacturers are offering that, but some are not. And in my opinion, I don't think that's necessarily a deal breaker. I've talked to some estheticians who are using that time once a week, let's say Tuesdays, to put these packages together for their clients. And now, they're not seeing them face-to-face, but they're dropping off a little care package basically of their order on their front steps. And of course in the bigger cities that might be difficult, but it's just a way to get out of the house too. [chuckle] So I don't know, I think there's lots of options. I don't think it always has to arrive through FedEx or the post office.

28:01 MD: It doesn't. And you have more time on your hands. And just remember that level of customer service of, "Wow, you're gonna drop off product to me? I feel so special that you're gonna drop it off on my front porch."

28:15 TD: And maybe a handwritten note?

28:17 MD: And a cookie?

28:18 TD: Yeah.


28:18 TD: Oh, this is starting to sound great. I need to put in an order soon. [chuckle]

28:24 MD: It's just that little... Go the extra mile. Go the extra mile because your client will not forget it.

28:34 TD: It's so true. It will live with them for a very long time. And I know that some estheticians are worried, and we're gonna talk about this, it's a perfect segue, about when should I reopen? "So my state says it's okay, I can reopen. I'm nervous, I don't wanna reopen." But then maybe some of them are saying, "What if my client goes some place else because they need such and such?" And I think it's those kind of little touches that you just had mentioned that are gonna make them say, "No, I've got great rapport with my client, and I feel really confident. I'm gonna keep doing these special things from a distance, and I don't think they're gonna go some place else." So it's personal for everybody, but I think that you have to make that choice for you. With that being said, let me ask you that question. When do you think that estheticians should start opening their doors back to seeing clients?

29:36 MD: It's a... You just love giving me load of questions don't you, Tracy?

29:39 TD: Well, it's a podcast, it's gotta be fun and juicy. [chuckle]

29:43 MD: Oh my God. If you really wanna know my honest spin on it...

29:47 TD: I do, yeah. And it's just... It's opinion.

29:50 MD: Well, I've been doing some other learning and expanding my own self in psychology just to be a better coach out in the field for people, and I will say that everyone's reaction and response to whether or not they wanna open, it's kind of a loaded question for them because they're at that crossroads of, "Do I even wanna be in this business?" Okay?

30:20 TD: Yeah, that's a hard one. Hopefully, that's an easy question, though.

30:24 MD: And there's guilt around it if they don't.

30:26 TD: Yeah.

30:27 MD: And then the whole response has to do with their own emotional stuff that they have going on. So be kind to yourself, but also be aware of what's driving either the fear or no fear, 'cause I've heard both. Like, "My state's not opening. I'm ready. WTF?"

30:51 TD: Yeah, yeah, definitely.

30:54 MD: And then I have other states that have opened and estheticians are like, "But wait, I'm not ready." And so you just have to go inward to say, "What are the triggers? What's happening there? What kind of path... " Even though this is new, as far as the pandemic, you have overcome challenges before.

31:18 TD: That's such a great point. So what you're saying is that this is a time to seriously reflect and really listen to what your gut reaction answers are to these questions.

31:32 MD: Right. Because it's not about the gloves, it's not about the masks, those are just excuses.

31:36 TD: Yeah, yeah.

31:38 MD: They really are. It's about much more. So get in touch with yourself to find out what that is and take a look at it. It's not gonna be so scary, but it might give you... No, I'm sure it will give you the answers. And you will start to feel uplifted yourself to go in one direction or the other, and it won't feel heavy anymore. Does that even make sense?

32:01 TD: Yes. No, it totally does. I'm just sitting here going, "Ah, it's... " What you're sharing is so amazing, and I think we always want to just take this very topical, top layer approach to everything 'cause it's the easiest. And what you're presenting today is probably a lot harder and really personal, and there's a lot that is all wrapped up in it. It's the way you're raised. It goes really deep, right?

32:28 MD: It goes deep.

32:28 TD: It goes into all kinds of stuff. Is there a book or a resource to really help people be able to ask these questions? Where can they go to explore this more?

32:41 MD: Oh my gosh, I had other things that I wanted to share but because we went in this direction, there is a great book called, "The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks." And it just is about how we're in our own way, and how we self-sabotage. And so, yes, this COVID has been a threat. If we were gonna do a SWOT analysis of our business, of the strengths and weaknesses which are internal and the opportunities and the threats which are external, COVID is definitely a threat. But it's the ability to say, "What kind of opportunities are inside this threat?"

33:31 TD: So true. I wanna scream that from the mountain top to everybody. There are major opportunities in all this yuckiness.

33:42 MD: Absolutely. For example, there has been pushback on, "Oh my gosh, I can't do virtual, I'm not techy." Becky Keen, my dear friend...

33:51 TD: I love Becky.

33:52 MD: I know, I know, I know, I know. She's like, "We're touchy. We're not techy." I'm like, "No, no, no. Cancel that, cancel that." And so I say to estheticians, "This is your new mantra. I'm getting better and better at digital every day." And you just chip away at it. It's no different than learning a brow wax and you... Until you learn enough where you're like, "Okay, I'm comfortable doing a brow wax. You know what I mean?

34:17 TD: Yeah.

34:18 MD: And it's no different, it's just practice in the digital space. But this is an opportunity. And can you imagine if you got your digital up and running, that now it's generating income for you while you're sleeping? You wake up and you're like, "Oh, I just sold a kit with a device. And I just made 500 bucks."

34:40 TD: Well. And here's the thing, too. Just open your eyes and look around. There's lots of estheticians who may have staff, a little bit of staff, whether it's a receptionist or what have you, you know what, they might be techy, they might be able to jump in and be looking for ways to help you build your site. What a great way to keep them on the payroll even if they're not seeing clients. You can have them building your site or you can look around to your... For instance, my 13-year-old daughter decided to build a computer while we were on...

35:18 MD: Oh my god.

35:20 TD: Stay-at-home order. So they're around you. You just need to open your eyes and it might just not be what you expect it. There's people who will help you get there.

35:32 MD: They will. And that's also an excuse, "Oh, I don't have the resource." We have to pay attention to, "Are you the cause or are you the effect?"

35:42 TD: Yeah, that's a great point.

35:43 MD: Does that make sense?

35:44 TD: Yeah. But elaborate a little bit on it, just in case other people are listening going, "Oh, What's Maxine saying?"

35:51 MD: I know. "What rabbit hole is she gonna go down now?"

35:54 TD: Yeah. Here we go. It's fine. Let's go down a rabbit hole. I love 'em.

35:56 MD: I get deep crazy. So if you ever invite me back, we can just plan on let's having deep conversations, okay?

36:03 TD: I love it.

36:03 MD: Because it's getting to the root of the problem. So what do I mean about the cause and effect? It's like for every cause and effect... For every action, there's a reaction. So if you're holding a pen up above and you drop it, the reaction is gonna be it's gonna hit the floor. So do you wanna be the one holding the pen and dropping it, or do you wanna be under the pen where it keeps hitting you in the head?

36:23 TD: Yeah, I definitely wanna be the dropper.

36:25 MD: Exactly. And really what that means is taking responsibility and taking control and not buying into the excuses or the reasons.

36:38 TD: And isn't that go back to what we started that entire conversation today about? Is the reason you become an independent contractor or a business owner or sole proprietor is 'cause you want the control, right? So own it.

36:53 MD: Yeah. Well, I think we all have different reasons for wanting to open ours. We want the control, but there's something bigger. And what is that?

37:02 TD: That's a question, yeah.

37:03 MD: It is a question. Because what success means for me is different than what it means for you, Tracy.

37:10 TD: Yeah.

37:10 MD: And what it means for each solo practitioner out there. So this is a time for a deep reflection and to expand your awareness to what is possible. Because you, again, have overcome challenges before. Remember in the '80s, Tracy?

37:32 TD: Yes, the [37:36] ____ decade.

37:36 MD: So intake forms and... But remember, HIV and AIDS.

37:39 TD: Oh, that's right. That was very scary times, yeah.

37:41 MD: Those were very scary times. It was a lot on CEUs. You had to get not only sanitization, disinfection, but you had your whole AIDS. And I was like, "When are they gonna change this to MRSA?" So they finally added MRSA to a couple of them, but now you better believe there's gonna be COVID on there.

38:01 TD: Oh, for sure. Yeah.

38:04 MD: But my point is, is that we survived that.

38:06 TD: Before we wrap up too much, I do want you to share a resource or resources with our crew. It doesn't have to be professional, it can be professional if you want or it can be personal, it could be a recipe, it could be a book, it could be a video, it could be a Netflix that you're binging. Whatever. Something that you wanna share with our listeners.

38:29 MD: Oh my gosh. So along with hanging around positive people and... Input equals output, so what you're putting in is what you're gonna spew out to the world. And so I love following Simon Sinek, he's just one of my favorite nerds. And I also love listening to Mike Michalowicz of Profit First.

38:57 TD: I haven't heard of that. That sounds interesting.

39:00 MD: Yeah. We taught that at Summit last year, and it was a game changer. It's a game changer for any solo practitioner because... And this is a whole other podcast.

39:11 TD: Oh, that sounds exciting, okay.

39:12 MD: Paying yourself first. But it's very inspiring and both are very inspiring. And I think we need inspiration, motivation and things that just are gonna help keep us going during this time.

39:24 TD: That's some good stuff. I love it. Okay, tell all of our listeners where they can find you. So, pimp yourself out. Tell us your social media channels, your email, your website, all your goodness that you're working on. Everything!

39:38 MD: Oh, my gosh. So really easy to find, maxinedrake.com. And from there, there's all kinds of free resources. And I just believe in giving and serving. And if you choose to do business with me and you wanna join our awesome business leadership and marketing membership, it's amazing. I'm so proud of these girls.

40:03 TD: Do it, you guys. Get all this goodness all the time. Can you imagine?

40:08 MD: I'm so proud of them I could cry. And you wanna be rubbing elbows with these kind of leaders that are just killing it out there.

40:18 TD: Do they go to your site to join this group? Where do we go?

40:21 MD: Yup. They sure do. It's the Esthetician Inner Circle. And if they go to maxinedrake.com, it'll be the first button they see, front row center. And then of course, the Beauty Business Summit this October. I think we need something to get excited about and we need something to look forward to attend. We are webinared out.

40:43 TD: Seriously. [chuckle]

40:48 MD: We want more than a virtual hug, but it's still gonna be small enough where it's not a big, huge group. And it's just a two-day intensive of business, leadership and marketing. We recognize the whole spiritual component. And we have an amazing lineup each year. I'm just in awe of who wants to be a part of this. It's definitely bigger than me. I just orchestrated it.


41:21 TD: You've just created it and envisioned it, had a vision.

41:25 MD: Yes, yes.

41:25 TD: How many people... I know that you do try to keep it pretty niche, like you were saying. How many people are you limiting spaces to?

41:34 MD: I have been going back and forth with this. This year, we were gonna open it up to 125.

41:40 TD: Okay.

41:41 MD: I don't wanna limit myself, but I wanna make that call in July to say, "Hey, it's gonna be this amount." I believe it's gonna be less than that, and I'm okay with that.

41:55 TD: 'Cause it'll be more intimate then, and people will get more one-on-one experiences.

42:00 MD: Yeah. And at that 125, it's only 25 more than what we had last year.

42:06 TD: It does get hard. So we've done some events and you know that with the schools and stuff like that, and when you start pushing over a certain number, it just starts feeling like... It's hard. It's nice that you're keeping it really niche, I love that.

42:20 MD: Well, I did my research, like you have too, and 125 is the cap to keep that intimacy.

42:25 TD: Yeah, it really is.

42:28 MD: And then from there, Tracy, then you have two. That's what you do.

42:33 TD: Yeah, of course. And you just have them in different parts of the country. That's it.

42:36 MD: You have them in different parts of the country. And that's what's been recommended for me and I'm like, "Alright, hold on, this is just our third year." And it is this year October 4th and 5th in St. Pete Beach, Florida. Like I said, we're just... I think it's gonna be even more special this year because of the year we've had. And so, are you gonna be able to make it this year?

43:00 TD: Well, as long as we don't have a travel ban in our company and everything's lifted up, for sure. Yeah, we're gonna try to make it for sure.

43:10 MD: I love it.

43:12 TD: [chuckle] I know, I think that's been the hardest part. I thought at first when all this was happening, I was like, "Ooh, I get to take a little break from travel," 'cause I travel quite a bit to all of the different shows across the country. And I am just so missing it so bad. I can't even believe how much going to live events really do... It really does fill me up. And I think it fills me up more than it takes away from me, even though it seems exhausting sometimes to travel a lot. I'm really feeling sad without it right now.

43:51 MD: I agree, because it's the human connection.

43:53 TD: Yeah.

43:56 MD: And we need and we know that it feels good to get out of our treatment room and not just roll ideas around in our own head, and get out and meet others who are just doing things that we wanna do, and be inspired by leaders, and just enjoy for a couple... I agree with you, we need these events, and let's just pray that next year that things will be a lot better in this area.

44:30 TD: Yup, we gotta just keep pivoting and being optimistic and looking for the opportunity in the challenge, right?

44:37 MD: Opportunity in the challenge. That's it.


44:47 TD: Do you have any social media handles that you wanna share? Are you on Instagram or Facebook?

44:50 MD: I am. Instagram and Facebook is Maxine Drake and Maxine Drake Consulting. Either way. Either one of those. Follow me, shoot me a message, I reply to everybody. I don't have anybody man my stuff. I love connecting with people.

45:06 TD: Nice. Oh, I love it. Okay, you guys, everything that we have talked about during this podcast will be in the show notes, everything, I promise. And if you have any questions, reach out to me or reach out to Maxine, you know where we are. And I just wanna say thank you so much for taking all this time to share all this great information with our listeners, and we'll have to have you back another time and get deep on some of these topics.

45:33 MD: Let's do it. I love, love, love helping you out, Tracy. I'm always there for you. Thank you so much.

45:40 TD: Thanks. Bye guys.


45:43 MD: Thanks for joining us today. If you liked what you hear and you want more, subscribe. If you wanna belong to the only all-inclusive association for estheticians that includes professional liability insurance, education, industry insights and an opportunity to spotlight your sick skills, join at ascpskincare.com. Only $259 per year for all this goodness. ASCP knows it's all about you.

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