By Erin McLaughlin
“The seaweed is always greener… in somebody else’s lake. You dream about going up there, but that is a big mistake.” Ok, admit it, you started singing along too, no? Disney songs have always had a special place in my heart, especially The Little Mermaid and I am physically incapable of not singing along when I hear the music. So what’s this got to do with grooming, you ask? Well, I’ll tell you.
I have had my business for 9 years and have been steadily growing since the beginning. Luckily I have been blessed with an amazing team of employees to help me face each new day. While they are worth their weight in gold, I unfortunately do not yet have the ability to give them everything I would like to make their employment as fulfilling as we all would like (401k, paid vacations, large holiday bonuses, etc). I am working towards that, but in the meantime while we grow, I have discovered I can do things to make my shop greener than anybody else’s lake.
Most of us listen to music while we groom. Pandora is our app of choice. However it got tiring always listening to the same boring genre all day long. So we discovered you can make a work station and “Add Variety” of completely different artists to get an eclectic mix of music that everyone likes. For example, our work mix consists of anything from The Beatles (for Tina), to Neon Trees (Anthony), or The Dirty Heads (for me), spa and relaxation music (for the pets, can’t forget them). One day I decided to add Disney songs to the mix, cue the sing-along. Which brings new meaning to our name, Little Shop Of Howlers. There’s just something about singing along to Aladdin’s A Whole New World while brushing out a long overdue GSD that brightens everyone’s spirits. Or changing some of the lyrics to Be Our Guest to be a little more grooming oriented. Try it, guaranteed smiles.
So while I can’t offer a company car, or private jet access, I can make each day as pleasant and sometimes silly, as possible. As the leader of this team it’s my job to provide a positive work environment both for the pets in my care and the people stuck with me all day. Not to mention our clients think it is adorable that we are serenading their babies while styling their fur. Don’t worry, I can barely carry a tune in a bucket (just ask people who have competed alongside me), but give it a try and let me know how much laughter you introduce into the workplace, and watch the dogs relax and enjoy the good times as well. Wrapping this up just in time, have to go practice the dance accompaniment for Let’s Go Fly A Kite in case it is played tomorrow. Happy singing! “