The Paragon Pet School is different than many trade or vocational schools because its on-campus and distance learning curriculum is developed and delivered by industry experts. Those experts will be taking their knowledge on the road this week to share with groomers across the nation at the Atlanta Pet Fair. Founder Melissa Verplank and VP Joe Zuccarello will make three continuing education presentations during the four-day event.
The pet fair features more than 100 exhibitors from the $70 Billion pet industry and is one of the country’s largest trade show and conferences for professional pet stylists and service professionals. The show provides grooming professionals with access to the latest products, education, pets and employee safety training, and networking to ensure they have the tools and insights to operate successful businesses.
The show also hosts one of the biggest grooming competitions in the Southeast United States, including competitors on the 2019 GroomTeam USA. Groomers and stylists from around the world come to Atlanta Pet Fair & Conference to participate in the more than 10 contests spread over four days at the show, including a “Rescue Rodeo.”
Here’s a lineup of Continuing Education seminars by Melissa and Joe.
FRIDAY – 4:00 p.m. German Suite with Joe Zuccarello
Culture and Team Building: Why It Is Important and How It Can Make Your Life Easier!
In this session, Joe will speak about the ingredients necessary to build a solid team and the importance of your company’s culture as it relates to productivity, customer satisfaction, and overall operations and management benefits. Have you ever felt like not going to work, either by calling in sick or playing hooky only to realize that you cannot do that because you’re the boss and you have to be there? Do you feel every day is a battle when it comes to managing your employees and your business? Are you exhausted or discouraged? You’re not alone! This session is designed with you in mind! Believe it or not, you may be to blame for the feelings you are having. But there’s good news ahead…there’s a better way and Joe will explore practical solutions for you to put in play immediately when you return to your business. It’s ok, you’ll be a room filled with others who are struggling just like you are. So come prepared to be honest with yourself, open to new ideas, and ready to leave the session with a new perspective!
SATURDAY – 3:00 p.m. German Suite with Melissa Verplank & Joe Zuccarello
Perception is Reality – The Three Pillars of Branding Yourself
This down-to-earth presentation lays out the three pillars every pet grooming business and their team must master: branding your shop, branding your team and branding your marketing message. The bottom line: perception is reality. In this session Melissa Verplank and Joe Zuccarello will present how creating positive relationships with clients and their pets will grow your business. Creating a successful pet grooming business with a strong clientele is not a destination, it is a journey. The right message will create a healthy repeat clientele. The wrong message will leave gaping holes in your appointment book. Together Melissa and Joe offer plenty of positive ideas and strategies. Their concepts allow you to create your own branding platform. Their goal is to help you understand and implement the values of positive branding to build long-term success for you, your team and your business.
SUNDAY – 12:30 p.m. Australia Room with Melissa Verplank
How to Find and Keep Great Groomers
Staffing your grooming department can be a huge challenge. Melissa knows as she’s been there countless times herself. Over the years, she has learned what it takes to find great groomers – and keep them. In this session, Melissa shares her secrets to recruiting talent; talent who wants to grow their own skills and see the company succeed. She’ll talk about what to look for when hiring plus, share ideas on how you can encourage personal growth within your team. She’ll also discuss a unique compensation plan when it comes to paying your grooming team. Melissa’s methods are time-tested and proven. When used correctly, they ensure longevity and job satisfaction. These two areas are important when it comes to growth, profitability and a smooth-running grooming operation.