Trade shows: a wise investment?

 Hello hello and welcome to Greedy Bitch, a podcast where groomers stop apologizing for charging their worth.  I’m your host River Lee, founder of the Savvy Groomer. Today's episode is sponsored by the Pay Masterclass, a 6 module m masterclass where we teach you all about paying employees. Let’s talk about today's topic:


Trade Shows, A Wise Investment?


When was the last time you went to a grooming trade show? Was it a wise investment of your time and money? Are you an employee or business owner? As a business owner are you considering bringing your employees? Let’s talk today about reasons you should, or should not, invest in going to a trade show.


So if you’re an employee, let’s say you work for a corporate salon, or you work for a small grooming salon, is it worth the money to go to a trade show? And that really depends on, is this going to be your profession, is this going to be your career? Or is this going to be a hobby for a little bit and you’re going to move on in your life? 


Now I will say that if you can go, you should, because I think that trade shows are really good for the soul.


If you’re an employee, I think that it’s important that at least once a year to make it a priority to go to a trade show. They can be expensive. Look at how much money you want to spend. What is it that you want to get out of this trade show? What do you want to learn? Do you want to learn more about a specific breed? Is there somewhere in your grooming that you're really struggling? Is there a specialty you want to get into? Do you want to bring home some really awesome tools, tips, and tricks to make your job a little bit easier? Do you want to learn how to be a competition groomer? Is there somewhere you’re really lacking? Do you want to learn something like hand stripping? There are a lot of things that you can do there that are going to increase your worth as a groomer. What can I learn that I’m going to end up earning more money? Quick tips, any weaknesses you have in your grooming, how to take care of your body more (scissoring or body positioning) to prolong your grooming life. 


If you’re a grooming business owner, you can always learn more because the industry is always growing and changing. There have been so many advancements in the last 10 years. There’s always going to be a better, faster way of doing something. As a business owner, it helps you to know where to invest. If you’re going to invest that much in products, you’re going to want to try them. If you are struggling with customer service, or wondering why you just can’t get the right customers, if you feel like you want to grow with employees. For the business classes look up the speaker and make sure that you are in line with what they like. Don’t be afraid to go to things outside of the pet grooming industry. Before covid I used to go to at least 2-3 a year that are outside of the grooming industry, mostly because a lot of the grooming industry is behind business-wise. For example, offering 50% commission is not a pay scale, it is not sustainable. In the grooming industry we continue to fight  about independent contractors versus W2 employees. We are very behind in a lot of things, and it’s honestly because most business owners in the grooming industry are not business owners, they’re groomers. Having a degree in business management and running a company with 200-300 people or a CEO is a lot different than running a company with 5 people. You’re going to be looking at tools and what you want to learn.


You might also be asking, “Should I pay to bring my employees?” And that’s a tough question. 


It’s really hard to move up as a grooming employee. Most salons don’t have salon manager positions. The only way they move up is either by renegotiating at another salon for more  pay, moving to a salon that makes more money because they charge more per dog, or opening up their own shop. 


Right now, how is your employee’s performance? What is their attitude? Are they being kind? Are they grateful for the job they have? Are they appreciative of everything that you do? 


You might say: 


“Okay guys so if everyone earns X amount of points, or does this amount of work, or whatever the tier is, then I will pay for you to come to Hershey.”


“If you don’t hit these numbers I can’t take you.”

**added rift, put in searchie, add later


People don’t stay in jobs often. People want more. Just be happy you were part of their journey. 


If you’re going to grow yourself or your business, or bond closer with your employees, I think it’s a great investment. Trade shows are good for networking, trying out products, and taking classes.


I think that once a year you should set aside a certain amount of money to go and add to your education. 


You could also do a trade show every other year, and in those off years do an online course. You could have a speaker come to you or you could have someone come to do a demo. 


If you’re feeling burnt out, going to a trade show will help you with your burn out, because you’re going to be around the buzz and excitement. Enjoying the time with other groomers is really going to uplift you.

If you guys are interested in learning more about the Pay Masterclass, be sure to visit me at This is a 6 module masterclass where we teach you how to create a pay structure that actually works. We'll show you how to calculate sustainable pay structures, set up your back end to legally pay employees, and create bonuses and benefits to keep those employees.


Thank you all so much for listening to this podcast, Trade Shows; A Wise Investment. Be sure to visit me at to see my current opportunities to work with me in growing your pet grooming business plus more free resources for you to learn. See you in our community on Facebook - Savvy Pet Professionals! As always, Happy Grooming