This interview is part of a series chatting with local business owners, artists, organizers and people in our community who are learning to adapt during COVID-19.
Rhonda Barriage – Beauty Works Day & Medi Spa
Briefly describe your business.
Beauty Works Day & Medi Wellness Spa, Quinte Region’s largest full-service day spa, offering medical treatments, esthetics, massage & body treatments delivered by highly-trained professionals in a private and welcoming environment.
What does working from home/your workplace look like for you right now?
We have been open for product sales, curbside pickup and free city-wide delivery since we were able to do so in April. My spa manager and I have been at the spa full time since then, working on things we don’t get time to do when the spa is open and doing product orders.
How have you adapted your operations during the pandemic?
We have been open to the public for appointments since Friday, June 12th. We were all a little nervous opening up to the public even though we are adhering to all of the health regulations. Our main concern is keeping both our staff and clients safe and healthy. We have put up barriers on our front desk and manicure and pedicure tables. We have schedules for cleaning and disinfecting every few hours.
It is a lot more relaxed then we thought it would be. Since grocery stores and pharmacies have already been open, all of our guests were used to wearing
masks as we requested. We have staff waiting outside the door before anyone comes in to greet them. We have embraced hand sanitizing and social distancing. We have staggered treatment times and added extra time for cleaning so that we don’t have as many guests in the spa at one time.
We are not open for all of our services yet. We are only allowed to do pedicures, manicures, body waxing and RMT massage.
How have you been supported by the community?
We have been very lucky to have such great support from the community with product orders and guests wanted to go on our waitlist until we opened up.
What is something good that has come from this difficult situation?
There has been a lot of sickness, death and inconveniences throughout this pandemic, but I do think some good has come out of it as well. I hear people say they are gardening and relaxing and taking up hobbies that they have not been able to do when working. Families are together more and enjoying each other’s company. It is almost like some outside force is forcing everyone to slow down.
I truly do believe our society is at a fast pace, you really don’t have time to stop and enjoy life and what is really important. For some, it is like having your
retirement in the middle of your working time. You are young enough to enjoy it. I also hear people saying they will never go back to the pace they worked at before. This has been really eye-opening and in a way, there has been a silver lining.
What advice do you have for other business owners at this time?
I think my advice to other business owners is to just stay positive, have a plan of action and be diligent with it and know you will come out of it. Rely on other owners of like businesses to share what they have done. Most business owners know that owning your own business has a lot of risks and this is just one of them. The benefits far outweigh the risks of owning your own business.
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
These are certainly uncertain times and nobody really knows how and where it ends. I think everyone is still a little bit scared until we find a vaccine for this virus. I truly do appreciate our front line workers, essential service workers, volunteers, Premier Ford and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for truly caring and making the hard choices for our country. I know there is always room for criticism but they are certainly big boots to fill. I think they are trying to do all they can to keep this country going.
Stay tuned as we share more local folks who are Makin’ It Work, and check out our weekly interviews (of the same name) on Instagram Live every Friday.