Shining Star - Karen Covington, Lava Hair Studio

In Search of Education & Inspiration, Lava Looks to ARROJO

Lava Hair Studio is a dream brought to life by Karen Covington. A childhood ambition to be a salon owner became real when she saw the changing demographic of North Georgia. Seizing the opportunity, she designed a salon space espousing a fresh, modern feel, nestled in the Georgian mountains.

Opened in 2006, Lava became an instant hit. Karen’s commitment to education and leadership saw charming, well-informed stylists service clients happily and professionally, and with exceptional standards of hairdressing. The first to bring fashion-forward trends and techniques, cuts and colors and styles to the community, word soon spread. Lava became the iconic talk of Dawsonville town.

Today, Lava Hair Studio continues its remarkable upward curve, boasting growth of 23% for 2010 (to date). And when they applied to the Ambassador Program, we found many examples of the progressive business types we love to work with.

As a leader who wants to improve her leadership, Karen hires an ‘Inspiring Champion’ –– a business coach who helps her brand be smart and efficient, organized and effective. She has set goals for herself and her team. She trains stylists to be expert communicators, so they understand the needs of each client. Her culture also demands stylists educate guests about their at-home hairstyling, so they enjoy great hair everyday, and not just the day of their appointment –– something much aligned with our own thinking. And Karen knows, by raising her own salon’s standards, she contributes to raising standards throughout the industry, which, as a passionate hairdresser who cares about the craft, is exactly what she wants to do.

This zest and vision, savvy business mind, and sense of duty to raise the level of hairdressing meant Lava skyrocketed to the top echelon of the industry. Nevertheless, Karen saw room for improvement by joining our network.

“ARROJO Ambassadors is what the industry needs,” she says. The support, the education, and the close and personal connection to a world-class brand makes this program special; it truly enables salon owners and their stylists to immerse themselves into ARROJO’s culture. When I spoke to Nick this is what he said: ‘We believe in your dreams and we will use our education and inspiration to support you as you bring them to life’ –– I’ don’t know another brand with such positive support.”

Just one month as part of the program, Lava is already seeing the benefits of the association. “Our average retail per client is now between $18-$23, which puts us in the top 1% of all salons,” explains Karen. “We’ve always been achievers, but I’ve never seen the team so motivated. We've earned over $1000 Reward Dollars* in the first month. The sense of excitement for a business plan that allows us to go to NYC and learn with Nick and his amazing team of stylists is palpable.”

The Ambassadors Program represents our commitment to provide inspiration and education alongside a great product line. We want to empower professionals to increase growth and productivity in their salon business, immerse fellow hairdressers in our world of excellence and integrity. But it also takes us in to the world of our professional peers, and it’s great to see like-minded, passionate people that care about the future of our industry. As Karen says, “Together we are a untied force for progressive thinking, ongoing education, better and better work in the craft that we love.”

* These are education dollars given from us to Ambassadors, in return for wholesale product purchases; they enable Ambassadors to take seminar education with Nick Arrojo and our team at the ARROJO advanced academy, NYC, as well as purchase back-bar stock.

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Inspiring Champions is a business and coaching company offering live training camps, coaching and mentoring services, webinars, audio tapes and educational resources.

For more information:


Jenny Hogan is the Media Director at Marketing Solutions, Inc., a full-service marketing, advertising and PR agency specializing in the professional beauty business.

For more information:
email MktgSols@MktgSols.com.

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