COVER HAIR GROUP

Brand producer

Kazunori Tanimoto

kazunori tanimoto
Pursuing salon work to achieve both radiance in customers and happiness for staff members

The Japanese beauty industry is highly competitive. Excellent techniques and refined taste are required. At the same time, the labor environment is harsh: fierce price competition among salons, long working hours for beauticians, and low wages. It is not surprising that the turnover rate tends to be high, and there are many issues in the development of human resources. In this environment, in addition to providing high-quality service, COVER HAIR GROUP strives to develop its staff members into biyou-shi, beauticians with high aspirations, mature in terms of knowledge, techniques, and personality. Mr. Tanimoto, representative, plays an active role as a leading person in fields such as beauty consulting, photo shoots, and education, and he has managed 10 beauty salons. He explained that gratitude is the reason to put a lot of effort into the development of human resources in the next generation, along with managing beauty salons.

Year of Birth
1969
Birthplace
Hiroshima
Name
COVER HAIR GROUP
Headquarters
5F HY Building, 4-1-5, Kitaurawa, Urawa-ku, Saitama-shi, Saitama
Founded
2011
Type of business
Overall management of beauty salons
url
http://cover-s.jp/
The number of beauty salons has been increasing for the past few decades. According to the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, there are 247,578 beauty salons as of 2018, much greater than the total number of all the department stores, supermarkets, convenience stores and drug stores. It can be said that the hairdressing industry has been growing. It is true that there is fierce competition in services provided by beauty salons, in both quality and price. The lowest price for a haircut is 1000 yen. If a customer requests coloring and haircut in a popular store in Tokyo, it is around 10,000 yen on average. While it has become common for beauty salons to offer high-quality service at low prices, they suffer from a bad labor environment for beauticians engaged in the hairdressing industry, and stagnant wages.

COVER HAIR GROUP is a hair salon group which runs 10 beauty salons mainly in Saitama. The Group has hired approximately 90 staff members around 30 years old on average. Since the first store opened in 2011, the Group has been improving performance steadily and expanding business. My personal career is much the same as other representatives of hair salons. After graduating from a beauty school, I paid my dues, taking an apprenticeship as an assistant with the so-called craftsman spirit, starting from cleaning and handing out flyers, and working at low-price salons that prioritized productivity and rationality. Then I was assigned to run a store under the leadership of a development-oriented owner of a long-established salon and became the representative of COVER HAIR GROUP. I improved my artisanal skills as a beautician, and also took fact-based management training with the focus on highly rational management and productivity. Thus, I could set the objectives I wanted to pursue as a beautician in my lifetime, and develop opportunities to be strongly aware of the issues the industry has.

The present turnover rate of beauticians is high. The reasons are the aforementioned labor environment and low wages, loss of motivation, and human relations. Financial concerns staff members have, and long, restricting hours can be solved through management capabilities. However, I found it necessary to develop a system to foster growth in skills and minds, which resulted in the establishment of the Group’s own training school, Academy.

At Academy, certified instructors work for the company, and develop highly professional stylists in the categories of shampoo, coloring, styling, perm, and model haircuts. In facilities just like a salon, it provides technical seminars and workshops on trends, and also holds exchange meetings for staff members at the same skill level. A big difference from a beauty school is the ability to continuously provide workshops on skills and management after a person makes their debut as a professional hair stylist and propose specific career plans, such as top stylist, manager, or corporate management executive, and coach beauticians toward these goals. We help each staff member set targets depending on his or her preferences and ability, and feel satisfied and continue to work for his or her lifetime as a beautician.

I strive to change the job of being a beautician so that they feel secure and continue to work positively by developing the environment and taking the initiatives above. I would like to develop talents who can describe themselves as biyou-shi, who aim higher for beauty in their lifetime. This is a coined word which refers to talents who are not only experts on haircuts and styling, but those who continue to be involved in everything regarding hairdressing with conviction, and create enhanced time value according to their skills.

Before devoting myself to the hairdressing industry, I was a boy who longed for a punk rock band. While I aimed to be a beautician, I made a lot of mistakes because of my ignorance and lack of experience. However, I was blessed to have good education, and felt satisfaction in learning. Later, when I was asked to become the head of the beauty department of a company with several hundred employees, I was undecided as to whether I should accept the offer. I held interviews with staff members and found many of them had sparkling eyes. I noticed that, even in situations where the organization did not function well, they worked hard for customers. Just as I was supported by many senior employees in the past, I decided to develop human resources on our own. That’s how I rediscovered the D.I.Y spirit that is a cornerstone of punk rock.

In recent years, we have had many remarkable achievements: our staff members were featured as top players in trade papers and magazines, large collaborations with companies were realized, and we ranked No.1 in the popular style ranking in Japan. Nevertheless, what I find the most wonderful is the success of our biyou-shi staff members whom I was involved with developing.

My belief at present is in the principles of conscience and affluence. If I have the conscience in understanding things, and get involved with them, that conscience will be returned. In order to get the invisible value called trust from customers, it is important to provide warm customer service based on the idea that customers come first, according to the principles of conscience and affluence. I will endeavor to develop beauticians who are sought after and recognized in society.

kazunori tanimoto
kazunori tanimoto

*Information accurate as of time of publication.

COVER HAIR GROUP

Brand producer
Kazunori Tanimoto