General Director of Clarins Russia
Quarantine lessons. You need to prepare for any crisis in advance, build your business processes in such a way that they are solid, but at the same time flexible. You cannot rely on one product, one customer, one distribution channel, etc. We have learned to work effectively and efficiently remotely, from home.
New in business. The work became, perhaps, even more, because we had to do endless simulations of business plans, which were getting worse every week, and, of course, revise our budget. Instead of regular meetings in a conference room, we held meetings using various online tools, such as Zoom, etc. The EDI (electronic document management) system helped us a lot. EDF is, in principle, an integral part of the organizational process in a modern company, and in isolation it becomes simply a vital necessity. We made sure that, in general, teleworking motivates employees, giving them the opportunity to independently manage their own time, that is, they can do work when it is more convenient for them. In addition, remote scheduling allows people to spend more time with their families, which would not be possible with the usual office mode. From the point of view of business, naturally, successful work meant achieving the set goal, the result. And I must say, our employees supported us with a high level of conscience.
Changes in sales. Clarins is special in that we try to develop our product catalog in such a way that we do not have a single star product, although in recent years the legendary Double Serum has become such. Of course, there were some positions for which the demand increased dramatically. First of all, these are hand creams, products for cleansing, moisturizing and nourishing the skin. In conditions when one of the recommendations of doctors for the prevention of disease is hand hygiene, naturally, our clients want to use creams more after frequent hand washing, hence the increased demand for these products. Our company provided free hand creams to doctors of several Moscow hospitals. Regional sales are also growing, customers in the call center are becoming more active - they want to receive high-quality advice and recommendations from brand experts.
Personnel policy. We managed to keep all employees. This was part of the company's philosophy of social responsibility. Despite the unemployment of consultants working in offline stores, we paid everyone the salary part of the compensation in full and did not send anyone on vacation at our own expense.
Communication with buyers. We kept in touch with our customers through social media. We organized live broadcasts of the brand's experts on Instagram: both in the @clarinsrussia account and in the accounts of our partners - perfumery and cosmetic networks, as well as with influencers. We completely redesigned the social media content strategy. We actively developed communication through our website www.clarins.ru, developed a completely new service - an hour-long online consultation of a client with the best brand experts by appointment. And at the end of May, we launched a very useful service - a virtual make-up fitting room in the Clarins online store: by uploading your photo, you can “try on” makeup shades and choose what suits you best.
Suzanna Musaeva, owner of the Remedy Lab aesthetic medicine clinic
Quarantine lessons. We realized that we cannot be satisfied with what has already been achieved, even if it is success. And I believe that the present time has shown many company owners that being dependent on high rental rates is almost deadly for small and medium-sized businesses and one should be very careful about such determining factors.
Personnel policy. We managed to keep all employees. And we motivated them first of all by the fact that everyone was paid a salary and came up with classes - no one was left alone with their worries. The whole team was constantly in touch, and everyone had a new interesting job in which they could show their creative and communicative abilities, learn something new.
Online presence. During the entire period of self-isolation, we were constantly on the Internet. Our administrators and doctors were in touch with patients all the time. We constantly used social networks and conducted online consultations. They also offered interesting conditions for the purchase of professional cosmetics and acted as couriers themselves. We have certainly developed our online sales. Before that, we had less time to improve our own Internet platform for selling services and products presented in our boutique. But now we are actively moving in this direction and are finishing developing an application for clients and patients. Of all the online services, the most popular during the quarantine was a free consultation with the parsing of the cosmetic bag and the recommendations of our specialists.
New in business. In my opinion, one can single out the organization of online events - this has not happened before. It seems to me that this trend will continue to develop. Other, not entirely new, but still relevant models that will be improved are projects related to CRM systems and online learning platforms.
Oksana Lavrentieva, owner of the health and beauty center "White Garden" and the company "Rusmoda"
Quarantine lessons. For me it turned out to be a “circular” training in all spheres of life. Not a single one was left uncovered: children, family, married relationships, business, spiritual growth, development, new skills. Little did I get so much at once. During self-isolation, I was actively involved in sports, bought a bunch of masks. And I also bought a solarium … We have kept the "White Garden" completely. We had a simple motivation: you have to be patient a little - and everything will be fine.
Communication with clients. We told our clients quite openly about everything that was happening in our country, launched video master classes and recommendations from the masters in our instagram account, and also opened an online store. I think online sales are going to grow at the fastest pace right now.
New in business. Quarantine affected Rusmoda: we closed several stores. On the other hand, an online store has been well developed in White Garden. To support the salons, we offered clients to make a deposit for future procedures, and in a week we sold such deposits for several million rubles.
"It's time to stop hiding under a false name." Oksana Lavrentieva - about her brand OLOLOL
Sergey Karzan, General Director of the Verba Mayr Health Center
Quarantine lessons. You need to be able to adapt as quickly as possible. During the quarantine period, we created a product - the "Self-isolation" program, introduced a new genetic study that identifies genes and factors affecting antiviral and antibacterial immunity. We also developed two lines of special programs: one for psychological support and relief "Stress Management", the second - to strengthen the immune system. Another novelty is expected to be launched - a medical program to improve lung health. All this is the answer to the requests of our guests.
New in business. Of course, there have been significant changes both in the composition of services and in business processes. The pool is still closed. The spa area is now preparing to reopen after a month and a half of conservation. We provide meals for guests only in the rooms: the restaurant is still closed to the public. Canceled lectures, master classes, tastings - everything that previously constituted the leisure of our guests. We have taken unprecedented safety measures related to cleaning and constant disinfection of surfaces. Provided everyone with personal protective equipment. Twice a day we measure the temperature of staff and guests, since April we have been conducting selective tests, and since the beginning of June - regular weekly testing of all employees for antibodies and RNA of coronavirus. Providing a negative coronavirus test result is a mandatory requirement when a guest checks in to us. All of this significantly increases operating costs and negatively affects the volume of revenue.
However, the very possibility of Verba Mayr working in this difficult period and continuing to operate without global reductions is a positive moment. As the workload decreased and some areas of the center were closed, we were able to carry out the renovation. Remote work of some categories of employees proved to be effective, and in the future we will actively use this format.
Online presence. We launched a platform for online sales of medicinal products, ready-made diets, dietary supplements and cosmetics in 2017. In 2020, the online store continues to operate and has shown excellent results: in April, revenue grew by 2.5 times compared to the same period last year. Doctors' lectures went online and are now available as live broadcasts and IGTV on the center's Instagram account. Consultations of doctors and psychotherapist services are now possible and remotely, within the framework of online sessions.
Communication with clients. We have strengthened the presence of doctors on social networks and made it more interactive: if earlier it was video lectures, now it is live broadcasts with answers to questions and consultations. We began to work more with clients through partners. During the pandemic, there was a shortage of good news, and against the general negative background, our announcements of new products were interesting and in demand.
Maria Smirnova, owner of the PolyClinique health and beauty center
Quarantine lessons. I personally felt what a coronavirus infection is, because I suffered it. And, unfortunately, I was convinced that a lot of people were ill around. Once again I was convinced that a doctor is the most valuable profession, at least for me personally. The doctor needs to be supported, he needs to be admired.
Personnel policy. We have retained all employees. Naturally, everyone was paid. In April, they partially did not work, they were closed. But we were lucky - we have a fairly broad medical license, and according to it we were entitled to receive emergency patients with various pathologies. In our case, these are dermatological pathologies, allergies and everything related to skin health.
Communication with patients. We kept in touch with our patients constantly. We knew how our client base was divided: there were people who observed total quarantine, and there were those with whom we still interacted. During this time, there was a boom in sales of related products: cosmeceuticals, dietary supplements. Naturally, the number of online consultations with our doctors has increased.
New in business. I cannot say that serious changes have taken place, because we are working in an area where it is very important to communicate between a doctor and a patient one-on-one. And we, to our great regret, cannot totally go online, because no doctor is able to diagnose and give a complete and final opinion over the phone. We, of course, introduced online sales; both the call center and the managers worked a lot for us.
Maria Grudina, co-founder of the innovative prevent-age resort “First Line. Health Care Resort"
Quarantine lessons. Those structures that work intensively, concentrate efforts and resources on the most important, have an answer to the question "why?" In the foundation of their activities. and rely on values and a clear strategy (in our case, preventive medicine), not only do not lose, but also open up new opportunities in such transitional periods.
Personnel policy. Our team is now in full force, but we are carefully analyzing the structure and, for example, are abolishing some leadership positions where they were an unnecessary superstructure. At the same time, we keep people, offering them positions that are more relevant to this period: this is how we have a new service for working with guests, which is responsible only for service and quality. Our entire team worked during self-isolation while maintaining salary, and the motivation was to transform the current products in accordance with the requirements of the present time, to create new strategic directions within which we will develop in the post-crisis period. Both tasks have been completed. Now we are testing them in action.
Communication with clients. We have organized free consultations of our specialists on all issues related to maintaining health and performance, as well as excellent physical shape. In addition, we formed online accompaniment programs that allowed guests to adjust the regime, balance the diet, and with it weight and well-being. In the second step, we developed perfect isolation programs right at the resort, which combined online and offline formats.
New in business. One of the important tasks (I try not to look at difficult situations as problems, but to see growth points in them) is digitalization. In my opinion, the automation of business processes and the selection of effective tools - software and related services - is a key task when looking at the development of companies in the future. For some reason, traditionally in Russia, companies outside the IT sphere do not pay enough attention to this, and most importantly, they do not allocate a budget. At the same time, according to international estimates, in particular the data of the Skolkovo Moscow School of Management, the costs of IT solutions for companies that do not belong to the information technology sector should be 2-10% of turnover. I pay special attention to this task, this year we are planning to launch a new program and application for guests.
The built system of quality and service is a matter of my special pride and public recognition. During quarantine, I carried out an online defense of the resort's service system as part of the CX World Awards and First Line became a laureate in the field of customer service.
Anna Volkova, co-founder of the Kynsi beauty salon chain
Quarantine lessons. The only thing that can now be stated based on the results of the quarantine: any business must create a financial reserve, pay great attention to planning and financial risks. So, for example, problems with paying salaries in the absence of income would not have been solved without an appropriate reserve fund. Its minimum size should provide all obligations for at least two, and preferably three months. In any case, it is too early to assess the consequences of the quarantine, we still have to draw full conclusions by the end of the year. The likelihood of a second wave is being actively discussed, and one must be prepared for it.
Personnel policy. Business is, first of all, people, employees are the main capital. We managed to save the entire state. The most difficult thing, of course, is for employees with piecework salaries, which depend on the volume and cost of the services provided. They caused the same inconvenience as our entire organization. I am proud that this difficult period did not require any special efforts to motivate employees. The administrative, marketing and PR departments rallied together and began to look for solutions and ideas. Everyone wanted to make their own contribution to the preservation of the organization, it was personal internal motivation. After this, you understand that you no longer have a team, but a family.
Communication with clients. We created special kits, launched online consultations, opened an online store, and it seems to me that this format gave us more new opportunities. We regularly call our clients, tell them about new products, home care opportunities, and hold interesting master classes on Instagram. After the quarantine, we will strengthen these areas and combine them with the usual ones, which will give even greater synergy.
"Is it possible to survive at all?" Beauty salon owners - about new working conditions.