Selecting a Personal Stylist – Part 5

This post is a continuation of answers to the 14 questions posed to 8 personal stylists I interviewed last summer to help me reboot my wardrobe.  For an introduction to the stylists, check out Part 1 and for answers to the first 11 questions, check out Part 2, 3, & 4.  In this post, I’ll cover the last 3 questions.  So let’s get to it.

#12 How do you define success when working with a client?

Four stylists specifically answered “if the client is happy.”  Jodi Friedman Skorupski went on to say:

“If a client refers someone else to me or comes back, that is a strong confirmation that they were happy with what I did for them.”

Natalie King wants to know that the client not only enjoys the results, but the experience of working with her.  She tries to stay in tune throughout the process to her client’s feelings:

“Your closet is your sanctuary.  I’m very careful about editing during the closet review process.  It can be a very upsetting feeling if someone wants to get rid of your things.”

For Natalie Weakly it is important to know that the client not only got value from the service, but:

“We established a rapport and they walk away as more than just a client.”

Yael Trusch likes to See her clients transformed so that:

“They now are able to get up in the morning and know what to wear.”

#13 What age range do you typically work with?

I was a little surprised by the answers to this question – I was expecting a more narrow range.  But the stylists listed everything from high school to post retirement.  Per El Matha Wilder:

“A mother might hire me to work with a young girl about to go through rush at college or someone who is retired and changing lifestyles might hire me to help them put together a wardrobe that is more casual and easy to care for.”

That being said, the average minimum age stated was 31 with the average maximum age being 57.  The stylists reported working with women in this age range for life events such as getting married, having children or progressing in their careers (See question #4 in Part 3).

#14 What did I not ask that I should have?

It occurred to me during my first interview with Jodi Friedman Skorupski, that I was not nearly as well prepared for this interview as I usually am in my day job as a change management consultant.  There are certain questions I’ve learned to ask when working with corporate clients going through a major change, but for this more personal change, I wasn’t sure I knew what all the right questions were.  So, I asked the stylists.

Jamie Meyers Bisel chose to share an interesting statement with me:

“99% of the time when it comes to clothes, I don’t care what others think.”

I kind of love that.  I believe Jamie’s point was that her client should feel so confident in how she looks, that other opinions just don’t matter.  What is important is how you feel – if you feel you look good, that probably carries more weight in how you appear to others than what you are actually wearing.

Stephinia Hobbs thought I should know about her motivation:

“This is my passion.  Getting my clients out of their own head – fashion is a transformation.”

There’s that word again – “transformation”.  I’m thinking we could all use a little transformation now and then.  If Madonna can reinvent herself every ten years or so, why not the rest of us?

Both Yael Trusch and Danna Sivan thought I needed to get to know them personally a little better.  Per Danna:

“A closet is very personal.  It’s important that I connect to my clients. If you aren’t on the same wave then it isn’t going to work.”

Excellent point!  And so beyond the interviews, I’ve followed these ladies on social media, listened to their podcasts, read multiple testimonials on Facebook and maintained an email correspondence while writing these blog posts.  My problem is that I really love all these chicks!  They are each fabulous in their own unique way.

Conclusion

So, those are my 14 interview questions.  In my next post, I’ll tell you a little bit about how the process of hiring a stylist works and then, reveal my selection.  In the meantime, I’d like to thank all these fabulous ladies for bearing with me during our interviews – most of which took well over an hour and for getting back with me on approvals for each of these posts.  Everyone of these ladies is absolutely a delight to talk with and I’m hoping to include all of them on occasional “Ask the Stylist” panels.  Check back soon or better yet subscribe and you’ll be notified when the final post in my stylist selection series goes live.

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