In this episode of the Win the Day Podcast Becky sits down with the inspiring Jacqui Kronabetter. Jacqui is a brilliant entrepreneur and owner of the Rooted Culture salon in Verona, Wisconsin where she manages a team of 20 women. Jacqui has been married for 5 years and is a mom to 2 young children.
Building a Business
Kronabetter graduated highschool in 2007 and only lasted a few weeks at college before dropping out. She then went to work at her parents’ business, but quickly realized that was not a viable long term plan for her. She told her parents she wanted to explore different passions and enrolled in cosmetology school.
Upon graduating, Jacqui found herself hustling through the salon world honing her skills. After 7 years of working for others Jacqui was ready to tackle more responsibility and be a part of something greater.
A sense of leadership and teamwork was cultivated in Jacqui through sports teams when she was younger, and she realized she again wanted to be a part of a tight knit team full of support and people striving towards common goals. In August of 2016 Kronabetter pulled the trigger and started her first salon “Rooted Culture” where she now manages nearly 20 women. She started her salon just 12 weeks after she gave birth to her first child.
Environment is Everything
In her 7 years working at other salon’s Jacqui often observed toxic and unhealthy environments. In her mind she saw opportunity and potential in small changes and improvements to be made. Kronabetter knew employees are often more than capable of doing their jobs, they just needed a thriving environment to be themselves and reach their potential. Prior to cosmetology school while working at her parents business, Jacqui noticed how many employees felt they were part of a large family. This is the exact environment and culture she would strive to build for her business and team.
What goes into creating a positive environment and uplifting culture? Jacqui explains simple things like communication can go a long way. Easy gestures such as checking in on employees to make sure they are okay, if they need an extra hand, or just being there to listen during tough times can make all the difference in a culture.
In addition, having clear expectations for everyone and communicating them effectively can make sure everyone remains on the same page. Jacqui notes you should hold a high bar of expectation for yourself first and not ask of others what you cannot do yourself. She tries to encourage her team members to be confident in themselves and their work.
Jacqui holds a no tolerance policy on gossip which she says goes a long way, especially in her salon of nearly all women. She simply asks the women to change the conversation to something more positive for gossip can take over a culture quickly. Finally, she preaches to be humble, and treat others the way you want to be treated while practicing mutual respect and recognition.
Improving as a Leader
Jacqui holds a deep passion for the industry she works in and the work environment she manages. If one wants to build loyalty within the organization, Jacqui says you must also be loyal to others. To become a better leader she constantly stays interested in all aspects of the business, exploring ways to improve herself and the company. These qualities can become contagious throughout an entire team when practiced by the leader.
Jacqui cites Scott Miller and his book Management Mess to Leadership Success as critical to her growth as a leader. The book revolves around how to have the hard conversations in life and has 2 main parts. 1.) If you don’t address a conflict it will get worse. 2.) How to actually address the conversation that needs to be had effectively. Kronabetter is also a Dave Ramsay fanatic and notes that him and his ideas have been crucial to her success and developing skills leading her salon.