As of this fall, Osgood-O’Neil salons have been coiffing the heads of local residents for 15 years. That kind of sustainability is thanks to the business-minded savvy of Bruce Osgood and Allane O’Neil.
“Generally what happens is you become a very busy stylist, and you think it’s time to open up a salon,” Osgood said. “Right from the beginning, we saw that you have to put people in the right positions.”
Not only do you need the right team of owners, stylists, and managers, you need the right locations. First came Snider Plaza in 1998, then Knox Street in 2005, and finally, the Lovers Lane shop in 2007The business partners knew they wanted to be in the Park Cities for the clientele, but it was also convenient for them to have locations so close together in order to be visible.
“I hate putting my name on the door if I can’t be there all the time. One of us needs to be there,” O’Neil said.
The two owners knew each other through mutual friends, and it didn’t take O’Neil long to spot that corner lot in Snider Plaza for the salon’s flagship.
Osgood already had experience running a salon in Indianapolis, but when he decided to open shop in Dallas, he wanted to do things differently. For one thing, each stylist at the salon goes through a comprehensive training program run by the company.
“It’s a pretty long process here. You’re ready when you’re ready,” Osgood said. “We have a very specific curriculum now that is laid out for them and it’s step-by-step.”
Education is just one way the salon tries to differentiate itself. Not only do stylists go through intensive training before they are able to take on clients, but the salons also host educational events for all staff throughout the year, such as bringing in industry-renowned stylists.
“It’s inspiring. You get a little awestruck,” manager Sylvia Hoefelmann said. “They’re celebrities of the hair world.”
Osgood feels that the focus on education has helped to foster a family atmosphere among the staff, leading to many long-term stylists.
“We have some people that have been here 15 years,” he said. “They understand that they have a home here.”
But employees aren’t the only ones who benefit from the salon having business-minded owners. Osgood has tried to make the three salons user-friendly in terms of walkable locations, valet stations, and unique décor throughout.
“We’re careful about customer service,” O’Neil said. “It’s what makes us different.”
This story appears in the August edition of Park Cities People, on stands now.