Salons by JC has always been more than just a salon. For twenty years, it has been a place where stylists and other beauty professionals could go to take the reins of their own careers, start their own business and become their own bosses. It harbors a community that thrives on building each other up and helping one another develop new ideas and relationships along the way. As we celebrate twenty years of Salons by JC, co-owners Jack Griffey and Cecil Miller, along with President Steve Griffey, reflect on the journey thus far, and the Salons by JC vision going forward.
From Humble Beginnings
The journey began over twenty years ago when co-owner, Jack Griffey, was told by his wife that the doors to the salon she had served for years was closing its doors. Faced with the realization that she was going to have to relocate her clientele to another open-floor salon location, she decided it was time to try something different.
She found a place that resembled salon suite ownership. The space she worked in was no larger than a closet, but it gave her the opportunity to take her clients with her to a space she could call her own. One day, she invited her husband, Jack, to check out where she had been working.
“I went down one day to check it out for myself,” Jack recalled. “Right away I could tell that this concept was something I could create.”
After that trip, Jack went to the drawing board, crunched some numbers and realized this was an idea he wanted to pursue- but he couldn’t pursue it alone. He recruited his good friend and fellow retail businessman, Cecil Miller, for help.
“We were looking to get involved in something other than retail,” Cecil said. “I initially thought he was crazy. No way did I want to get involved the salon business- because I thought it just wouldn’t be for me.” About three weeks later, while viewing other salon locations in Miami and giving the idea some deeper thought, Cecil called Jack back and asked if he was still looking for a partner to start the salon suite concept with.
Not too long after that Jack and Cecil formed a partnership and started learning what they were going to have to do to bring their idea to market. It was the beginning of an epic adventure, and a lasting twenty-year partnership.
Opening the Doors
Getting the first location operational was a journey in itself. After Jack and Cecil were both on board to tackle creating a salon suite concept of their very own, handling the logistics became a learning process.
Though both were no strangers to business and the retail industry, neither of them had taken on entrepreneurship in the past. “It was hard to find people who would take us seriously in the beginning,” Jack said.
From real estate agents to bank lenders, Jack and Cecil made it known that what they lacked at the time in entrepreneurial experience, they more than made up for in determination to turn their vision into reality.
After many trials and errors, the two finally found a gentleman in north Dallas that was able to provide the real estate, and a bank that believed in the merit of the salon suite concept to help with the funding.
Once those two items were in place, the two began looking into what they wanted their salon suites to look like, visually. “We did a lot of going back and visiting the location my wife worked at to see how they built it,” Jack said. Once they had their vision ready, they had all the pieces they need to open their first location.
In September of 1998, Salons by JC opened the doors to their first location, just north of Dallas, Texas.
More than a Salon
Since opening the doors of the first north Dallas location, growth has not slowed down for Salons by JC. President Steve Griffey remembers his role in the growth of his father’s business.
“I had just moved back from Houston to San Antonio in 2001 and asked my dad and Cecil if they were interested in opening up a location in San Antonio. Once they were on board, we started the process of finding real estate.”
The move down south proved to be difficult, but not impossible. At the time, San Antonio did not have a salon suite concept and finding a 10,000 square foot space to operate a salon was unheard of. Eventually, they came across an opportunity in the Lincoln Heights area, and from there, Steve managed and leased the location.
“Once we had a rhythm, we kept doing what we did well and started looking for other San Antonio locations to expand to.” What followed was a chain of openings that included the Huebner Commons, Legacy Shopping Center, and followed by several other corporate locations and eventually, national franchising.
Twenty Years of Salons by JC
Since the beginning of the journey, Salons by JC has become more than a space for stylists to set up shop or for clients to receive spa services. It has become a beacon for the beauty community to express freedom, creativity and help harbor the client/stylist relationship. To date, Salons by JC has helped over 3,000 stylists become their own boss through the salon suite model.
“This concept provides the stylists an opportunity to not only increase their income by thirty to forty percent,” Cecil explained, “but it also gives them an opportunity to show their clients what they know and what they like to do.”
A big part of what Salons by JC hopes to do in the future for salons suite owners is to provide education. “We want to offer educational opportunities, not necessarily on how to provide services,” Steve explains, “but rather more business education so suite owners have the tools to become more profitable, sell product and improve their own skills.”
As we celebrate twenty years of Salons by JC, Jack, Cecil and Steve can’t help but reflect on what the milestone means to them. “Anytime you see a business get to twenty years old, it’s a testament to the founders and to the mission of Salons by JC,” Steve said. “We’re doing something here worthwhile.”
Through the trials and successes the past twenty years have brought, the team at Salons by JC corporate is proud to have found their niche with such an amazing community of beauty professionals.
As the book closes on the first twenty years of the Salons by JC story, the team, concierges, stylists and beauty professionals continue to light the way with their passion for customer service and beauty industry talent. New and exciting things are to come, but today, we celebrate twenty years of hard work, community and creativity at Salons by JC.
About Salons by JC: In 1997, Jack Griffey and Cecil Miller began their journey to transform the beauty industry one salon suite at a time. Like most young entrepreneurs, they started out with a big idea but had to learn how to start and run a business from scratch. After much perseverance and hard work, one year later, they opened Salons by JC in Dallas, TX in 1998, welcoming beauty and wellness specialists who were ready to break free from the traditional salon model. The company has since moved its headquarters from Dallas to San Antonio, where it continues to grow through franchising. Today, Salons by JC has over 87 locations in 24 states and Canada. For more information, visit salonsbyjc.com or salonsbyjc.com/franchise