The Importance of Positive Client Relationships

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A recent study from the Royal College of Psychiatrists warns that there is a 20% increase in people turning to drink and opiates during lockdown (the national drug treatment monitoring service statistics show April 2020 figures of 3,459 new adult cases compared with 2,947 in the same month last year).

Many adults are drinking more since the coronavirus pandemic began. The college estimates that in June, more than 8.4m people in England were drinking at higher-risk levels, up from 4.8m in February. It is statistics like these alongside a personal knowledge of the devastating physical and mental impact, that led Louis Byrne to mobilise his I Can I Am I Will (ICIAIW) Campaign and an encouragement to give people the tools to care for themselves.

Whilst Louis is acutely aware of the importance for access to professional mental health services, he is also a passionate campaigner for the positive power of the hairdressing/client relationship, he is also a strong believer in encouraging people to drill down into what is important to them. The ultimate aim of the campaign is to act as a focus upon a personal journey to happiness and wellness – something we all strive for. Louis makes this very specific to the hairdresser and client relationship and the many values held within this.

The campaign is built upon the very essence of the client/hairdresser relationship and represents the influence, importance and investment that is captured within this very unique relationship. Deriving from the personal relationships built up with Louis’ clients over the years and demonstrating a relationship that can move between professional friendly to deeply personal friendship. No matter the depth of that relationship, it is Louis’ belief that every hairdresser has the power to make both an external and internal change for the better with client work.

Louis said:

Positive relationships with your clients can make all the difference to your day. Building these friendships helps to make your clients more relaxed whilst in the chair. It not only enables them to be honest with you about their hair but also with life experiences, and this can help you to help them but inspire you in some ways also.

My campaign started with my friend and client Emma Willis, we were talking about empowerment and claiming victories for ourselves for our own lives and it started me reflecting on the real power and force for change that a hairdresser can have.

Whilst Louis has Emma Willis and Vicky McClure as clients, he believes that every single client should feel like a celebrity for that time they are with you. Louis added,

For a lot of my clients, their first hair appointment with me post lockdown was there first time back into the outside world which was, for some, nerve-wracking. Working with that relationship of trust has proved important in these post-lockdown days, not just for our clients but for us too, being boosted is a huge need for us as we all struggle with the discomforts of the PPE, the heat, the tiredness and also the challenge of bringing our best selves to each appointment, so the value of the relationship really does go both ways.

Louis’s wellness tips:
  • Breathe – take time to cool the system with deep breaths
  • Break – ensure you use your breaks wisely – move, stretch, eat and hydrate
  • Boost – listen to something funny, or have a laugh with a colleague, enjoy your client work – bring your best you
  • Believe – what you put out will bring rewards, to others and yourself, so keep the circle of care going

For more information on the campaign head to and @icaniamandiwillbylouisbyrne on IG.

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