Bring a photo. If you can show me what you want, rather than try to tell me, all the better. The photo can be of a celebrity or, even better, one of yourself with the hairstyle you'd like to achieve. This will help me understand your personal definition of "short" or "caramel highlights." Different terms mean different things to different people. Pictures help.
Be honest about your lifestyle. If you don't have time to style your hair every day, let me know. If you'd rather not use a lot of product, let me know that too. Both will influence the kind of style that is ultimately right for you.
Ask questions. This is especially important during the styling phase of our time together. If you don't understand why I'm using a certain product, or how to use a styling tool to achieve the look I'm creating, let me know. Your questions won't offend me. I want you to be able to look great and feel great when you style your own hair at home.
Take my advice. I absolutely want you to have the look you're going for. But I also want you to have the right look for your particular face shape, hair texture and lifestyle. If the look you want doesn't lend itself to any of these - I'll let you know. After we agree on the overall look you want, I'll offer little tweaks here and there that will achieve a great style that's perfect just for you.