Small Steps Toward Big Changes: Shannon King’s Advice for Increasing Diversity in Aesthetics
The aesthetics industry is fired up about increasing diversity, and we have some expert-approved tips to help you make your practice more welcoming for both clients and employees. Shannon King (BSN, BHA, RN) shared her observations on the state of diversity in aesthetics at AmSpa’s 2023 Medical Spa Show in Las Vegas, and we followed up after the conference to get even more ideas and action items for aesthetic providers.
Ready to be a change-maker? Let’s get started!
Shannon’s Top 3 Recs
Shannon noted that many of the problems within the industry are rooted in unconscious bias—people “don’t know what they don’t know”—so moving forward and growing starts with three steps: acknowledging, reflecting, and taking action.
Acknowledgement means understanding that we all benefit from greater diversity within the medspa sector, while reflection requires us to be honest about if or how we perpetuate those problems.
In the reflection stage, Shannon suggested asking yourself questions like:
- Is your office comfortable for clients of different races, gender identities, or sexual orientations?
- Do your social media accounts feature clients of different races, ages, and identities?
- Have you clearly stated that your office is LGBTQIA-friendly?
Even including questions about preferred pronouns or hormone therapies on your intake forms can help clients feel more welcome. Making that extra effort shows that you’re actively thinking about how you can serve a broad spectrum of clients.
But don’t just think about ways you can foster diversity in your practice. Take action. Whether that’s updating your forms or your social media bios, there’s no time like the present to make a change.
“It’s okay to be bold, and get out there, and invite what you want in your practice,” Shannon said. For example, she frequently tags #transgenderaesthetics in her posts so transgender clients researching services on social media can easily find her and connect for a consultation. “I want to make it known that all people are welcome in my space.”
The same goes for your recruiting efforts. If you want to increase diversity in your office, put it in your ad or job posting that you’re looking to increase diversity.
“Expanding diversity in your space does not mean you’re excluding anyone. It’s quite the opposite,” Shannon said.
Ask For Help
No one expects you to have all the answers. If you want help developing an action plan for your business, there are lots of professionals—including Shannon—who offer consulting services. The most important thing you can do is to start.
“It’s a lot of small things that will make a big change. It’s not something that you have to invest a lot of money in, but I think you just need a brain outside of your own, maybe a fresh set of eyes to look at what’s going on and see if you could do a little better.”
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