A “Fun” Eyewear Policy

I recently chatted with Lance Don- nelly, President/Owner of the Tan Republic Franchise Company – the largest salon chain in the western U.S., with 65 stores and growing. They are now located in Oregon, Washington, Nevada and California.

“My wife and I started the very first Tan Republic in 2005. From Day One, we knew that we wanted to have conversations with customers, not just ask, ‘How many minutes do you want? Room 23’,” explains Donnelly. “We knew we wanted to have a fun place for employees to work and to entice customers, and we really wanted to create a truly enjoyable experience.”

Of course, I asked Donnelly about his eye protection policy. “From the begin-ning, we conversed with our tanners and explained that we don’t loan eye protection but only sell it, and how important it is,” he shares. “Almost every tanner, in every store, walks in with their eyewear and lo- tion in hand. We instill it into our culture. Our competitors make eyewear an uncomfortable struggle, and we make it as fun as it can be.” He says that every customer gets educated and the tanning consultants create a conversation with tanners to build trust. “We don’t get serious with them right away; however, we ask them to ‘please have your eyewear and lotion ready when you walk in.’” He explains, “It would be annoy- ing if I have to ask you for it, if I was asked for it – so let’s find a way to skip that part.”

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