Working with Line Managers - FAQ
by Ruth Casey
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What does our Mom/Line Manager do??
A lot depends on the event. At a paid event, where the painting is complimentary, mom moves up and down the line, keeping it single file, making sure everyone has decided on their design and has a Sticker and a coin. (We have a display board and when they decide, the get a sticker that says "I was painted as a _____ by Just Plain Crazy." And they get a plastic coin to give to the painters, so we can keep count of how many we're doing. The coins are a mix of Mardi Gras and Pirate coins.) She'll also give the parent's small hair clips to keep the bangs off the faces of the little girls. (We buy these about 30 to a card for a dollar and never us them from child to child. They are theirs to keep) At a pay by the face event, she stays closer to her chair, but is definitely in charge of the line. She has 7 kids and keeps an eye on everyone. She takes the money for the designs and gives the kid a colored paper ticket to give to the painters. The designs are separated by color and the ticket color matches the price of the design. Red dot/ticket $5....and every hour, she collects the tickets.
On the hour, as she collects the tickets, she'll mark in our log the time, count and make a note of the weather. It helps us for the next time we're doing that event to know if we need to add another painter.
She knows how many people we can paint in an hour, so if we're at a paid event and supposed to close, she is very good at knowing when to cut the line.
She also asks the parents if it's okay if we snap a picture of the kids before they leave our chair, for our website. "We offer this as a courtesy to our customers. We've heard many times over the years 'I wish i had my camera' so we capture their photo, fresh from the painter. The child will be given simple instructions on how to wash the makeup off before bed, and at the bottom is the website." (<< The speech we've worked on with her.) She also reminds the parents that if their child is being painted somewhere to ask what the artist is using." Non-toxic doesn't mean skin safe. Wall paint is non-toxic, but you wouldn't put THAT on your child's face." And "Craft paint is for Crafts, not Children's skin." And she briefly explains about the safety of the cosmetics and glitters we use. She does it as she's chatting with the parents, and it is just information from a kindly lady. If we do it, it sounds like we're bragging or pushing ourselves.
She also tries to limit it to one adult in line with each child, to prevent the line from looking longer than it is. She watches that the people waiting stay back far enough not to crowd us, and that parents waiting for their child don't stand directly behind us.
"The painters don't come with rear-view mirrors. If you stand behind them, you'll probably be stepped on by accident."
She casually mentions where we'll be painting next, hands out our birthday fliers if someone is interested and answers most of the questions that would slow the line down if we had to answer, over and over. She's our Bulletin Board. (She says all the things people never bother to read on the signs.) She also makes sure we're drinking plenty of water throughout the day. And if one of us needs to "take a walk" or go get something to eat, she'll mention that the painters work best when they're fed and comfortable.
A GOOD line manager is a blessing and we're very blessed to have Mom with us. She wants to learn to paint, and i keep telling her, she can't 'cause we'd be sunk without her.
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