Yes. I meow’ed. And not in a fluffy little kitty cat kind of way. Or even a, ‘grr check out that hot guy’ kind of way. I’m talking about that meow sound that tends to pop up when a woman is being catty or a girl fight is about to happen.

Okay, now we’re in the right frame of mind. So, let me ask this: why is it that so many professional women try to undermine each other, instead of helping and supporting each other?

This obviously isn’t every professional woman out there, but like the “Mean Girl syndrome” there seems to be a few Ms. Kitty’s everywhere you go. It’s like they were told that it’s a guy’s world and there’s only room for one woman. So in order to succeed they need to destroy all of the competition.

Sound familiar?

According to a 2010 survey by the Workplace Bullying Institute, 35% of workers have experienced bullying at work. What’s really sad is that women target women in 80% of the cases. So not only are we not supporting each other, we’re actively trying to sabotage each other by preventing work from getting done, verbal abuse, threatening conduct, intimidation and humiliation.

I’ve experienced it myself… in fact, it’s happened a few times. I had one lady come in to replace the Executive Director and immediately inform me that although I may have been in charge of my department in the past, she was now and I must request permission for anything I do. She then made every day a terrible one until I finally decided that the place wasn’t a good fit for me anymore and went elsewhere.  In another position, I had a subordinate spread rumors about me to my co-workers which made it very difficult to build relationships and even do my job on a daily basis.


Wouldn’t it be easier to help other women succeed in business, rather than tearing them down before they even get started? Why is it that some of these Ms. Kitty’s think that the more they push other people down, the higher they‘ll get? When you’re a bully or hell-bent on destroying the “competition” at work, it doesn’t really make people like you much. Or trust you.

So ladies: Cut. It. Out.*

Instead of being threatened by each other, try learning from each other instead. Support each other. Mentor each other. Help each other. And maybe we’ll ALL get ahead.


* Yes, this might have been a Full House reference.

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I’m Confused About this Customer Service Oddity

I was going to start this post by asking what happened to good customer service. However, after thinking about it, that is a bit too harsh. The truth is that I actually do receive great customer service every now and then. However, something odd has been happening in the hair salon world.*

I go to a fancy salon to get my highlights done a few times a year. I actually go out of my way to this salon to see a specific colorist, because I’m really picky about my highlights and I think she does a great job. After my last visit though, I’ve decided to break up with her.

Tell me if you think I’m overreacting.

When I arrive at the salon, a concierge-type person greats me, signs me in and shows me where to sit to wait. While waiting for my appointment, I hang out by a soothing fountain and help myself from a selection of complimentary drinks.

Once my colorist is available, which is typically on time, she takes me over to get into my robe thingie and then we settle into a chair in her area. I have had some issues with her in the past about not getting the exact right color, so she listens to exactly what I want and applies the highlights. I wait until they are fully baked and then I’m walked over to the rinsing station where an assistant reclines the chair for me, washes out the dye and gives me a super great head massage.

Sound pretty great, right?

Once my hair is washed out, a glaze is applied to tone down the brightness of the color. My colorist comes over to check on the timing of the glaze, tells the assistant how much longer until they can rinse it out, and then leaves. When the time is up, the assistant washes out my hair, dries it with a towel and sits me under a hairdryer.

And I never see either of them again.

Neither the assistant nor the colorist comes back to actually check and see if the highlight color is correct. More importantly, nobody seems to care whether I’m happy with their work. They’re involved with me as a customer right up until it’s time to ‘unveil the finished product’… then they’re gone. This is weird, right?

What if I’m unhappy with the results? Is it so wrong of me to expect the salon experience to last until I actually leave the salon? Oh, and this isn’t just a one-time thing, this is their policy!

Now, I’d understand if I were going to a beauty school where they’re just learning, or a cut-rate salon that keeps their prices down by shortening their services. However, the salon I go to is really expensive. I deal with it though because I’m afraid to start breaking in someone new.

I’ve asked my friends and this has started happening to them too. I don’t understand why this is becoming the norm! Do people actually like this kind of treatment? Wouldn’t the proper customer service experience begin the moment you enter the salon and end upon your exit?

As it is, instead of walking out of the salon feeling like a gorgeous Pantene girl, I leave feeling somewhat unfulfilled and a bit ripped off. I call for the return of great salon customer service. If anyone has had a great salon experience, let me know…I’m looking for a new highlights gal!

* Wow – that sounds like I need a well coifed McGyver to go undercover with his fancy straighter and handful of ‘product’ to solve this case!

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The Ugly Side of Cross-Selling

I went to the gym the other day. Yeah, I’m going to just stop the sentence there so you can congratulate me for actually going to the gym to work out, rather than just hanging out at the pool.

Ok, moving on. Now, I go to one of those really nice lifestyle-type of gyms that has a hair salon, indoor & outdoor pools, café with healthy food choices, rock climbing wall, blah blah blah, in addition to the normal gym stuff. There’s tons of flat screened TV’s all over the place (so many that I’ve fantasized about taking one of the wall for “maintenance” and bringing it home for our living room) running TV shows, music videos, and special gym commercials and advertisements.

Well, as I mentioned I actually worked out at the gym when I went. I was feeling pretty darn good about myself for crushing some cardio (yeah, that’s how us gym-rats talk) and was thinking how awesome I was and that I should totally start working out on a regular basis. I mean, I had already done one day of working out, how hard is it to just keep this up and get into super saucy shape. It might take like a couple weeks* or something, but as I mentioned I was feeling pretty awesome.

Anyways, as I was leaving the gym I saw it: an advertisement on one of the jumbo televisions in the hallway that everyone has to walk past on their way out. So, what was the ad? Maybe a new health shake offered in the café or a special price for a mani/pedi appointment?

It was an advertisement to get a free consultation for plastic surgery.

Really?! Are you effing kidding me? So, basically you’re telling me that although you advertise your company as a gym (a fancy-schmancy gym, but a gym nonetheless), you figure you’ll give people an easy out to get the fat sucked out of them instead? Or it is that you want people to be perfect in every way, so you offer the perfect hairstyle, the perfect meal, the machines so you can make the perfect body and now, a plastic surgeon to “fix” whatever else is wrong with you.

Am I the only one who thinks this is insane?

Look, I know going into that gym that I’m not necessarily going to look like the petite 20 year old with a 6 pack who runs 7 days a week (hi Katie) no matter how hard I work out.  I’ve also finally gotten to that point in my life where I’m okay with the way I look. Now, there is definitely some room for improvement, but that’s on my own scale of beauty not anyone else’s.  So, the last thing I need to see when I finally work up the energy to GO to the gym and work out is that whatever I’m doing isn’t going to be good enough.

I get the idea of cross-selling, but this is just going too far! If you want to sell the healthy lifestyle, go for it with all those other offerings. However, hooking up with a plastic surgeon and offering a free consultation for anyone who has low self-esteem after sweating next to a Barbie doll for an hour is not the way to make your members feel mentally healthy, is it?

* Yes, this is a joke. I understand that it takes a long, long time to get in shape. I just don’t care.

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