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What would you do? Awkward Situation.

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  • What would you do? Awkward Situation.

    So I've been grooming the elderly parents dogs for 25 years. Dear, wonderful, sweet people who only adopt ancient, feeble dogs from the HS. I've prolly groomed 18 to 20 dogs for them over the some only live a year, some for a few years, but they want for not w/ this couple.

    So they refer their daughter to me last Summer. Daughter has Beardie, and 2 cockers, and has not followed in her parents footsteps w/ regard to coat care. I can live w/ that.

    Problem is her lack of respect for my time, continual whining about price, wanting a "discount" for bringing me THREE dogs in dreadful condition, and the thing that irks me the I'll give her an appt., or a choice of appt dates, and she rarely manages to follow thru, even w/ a phone call to confirm her decision. So if I haven't heard from her a week in advance...I just evaporate her appt in my book.

    Sooooo...if/when she calls back....I have decided I no longer want to offer my services to her. I've only tolerated this for as long as I have (6 months) because of the parent connection.

    Knowing the relationship I have w/ her parents, (and I certainly do not want to "tattle" on her...she's a grown-up)...but how would you word this w/ the DAUGHTER?

    I doubt I'll lose the parent's bizz over this, so that's not my concern.
    I just don't want my 1 nerve frazzled by this gal anymore.
    Last edited by 4Sibes; 01-17-10, 10:08 AM.
    Often it's not what you say, but how you say it.

  • #2
    I think you are doing the right thing to terminate the "relationship" w/the daughter. I would just make sure to make it clear to her next time she calls WHY you don't want to service her anymore.

    Perhaps you can have a "talk" w/her when she calls for an appt and give her one last "make or break" chance...........???? This might make YOU feel better about the situation if she doesn't follow through and you "kick her to the curb".

    Odds are, her parents are well aware of her "quirks" and will understand w/out being told why you sent her on her way. They sound like good old fashioned, out-standing people. I bet they never even mention it as they don't sound like the kind who would want to embarass you or who want to be reminded of their offsprings shortcomings.
    SheilaB from SC


    • #3
      I agree that you don't have "tell" the parents. Has nothing to do with them as clients. However, i think if it was me, I would just tell her that the relationship between the two of you just isn't working. I really don't think you have to explain anything to her. Just be done.


      • #4
        I'd fire her.

        I have 2 clients who are sisters. I've been grooming one of their dogs for 12 years; wonderful client! She treats me with the respect I deserve and I will accomodate her in every way possible if she needs to cancel and reschedule.
        Her sister is a whole other story: will schedule an appointment and then cancel the day of 10 minutes prior to her being there OR not at all. There have been several times she has no-showed. After 6 months of this **** I finally told her that I would no longer schedule her an appointment unless she could guarantee me she'd be there on time and wouldn't flake out on me; if so she'd be charged for the appointment.
        I haven't heard from her since and really don't care. I did make a comment to the other sister about how irresponsible she was and I guess she's been fired from several hair dressers for the same reason.
        The kicker in all this is she works from home and lives 2 minutes from my house and 5 minutes from the shop!
        ~*~*~Shawn, C.M.G.~*~*~
        Apparently common sense isn't all that common
        *~*~emipoo on egroomer*~*~*


        • #5
          I had a mother/daughter situation. Mother kept her dog on schedule (every 6 weeks) and never missed an appointment. Daughter would call maybe twice a year, dog was always a pelted mess and didn't take too kindly to being groomed. I tolerated it for 2 years simply because I was afraid I would offend the mother, but after a few no-shows I finally told the daughter we were just not a good match and she should find another groomer.

          The mother still brings her dog every 6 weeks and has never brought her daughters name up. I supose she probably knows WHY I refuse to groom the dog. **shrug**


          • #6
            How does "I quit you" sound?

            Thanks you guys...the ideas are good ones. I just want to be prepared when she calls again...and I sense it in the's about that time. I'll work on my wording.
            Often it's not what you say, but how you say it.


            • #7
              send her away

              I groom by appointment only. no walk ins. except some nails and face trims. if you are more than 15 minutes late without a call you must reschedule.
              I have had this situation happen. most, come around if they have to wait for a rescheduled appointment, but I have recommended other groomers that offer walk ins. some people just cant work on a schedule. I dont want those clients. I especially love the ones that call and cant wait for an appointment, its an emergency that they get in now. I dont want those clients either. dont get me wrong, all my clients arent perfect, pre booked, every few weeks, always brushed, etc. but most of my clients want whats best for their beloved pets. it sounds like this woman, unlike her parents, sees her pets as more a posession, secondary to her. too bad. sometimes the apple falls in completely different orchard.


              • #8
                How about "I'm sorry but I'm unable to continue grooming your dogs. I make my living as a groomer, it's not a hobby. Every time you no-show or put me behind schedule it impacts on my income and my other clients. Perhaps you can find a grooming service with a more flexible schedule. Have a good day."
                "The gift which I am sending you is called a dog, and is in fact the most precious and valuable possession of mankind"-Theodorus Gaza


                • #9
                  I would cut her loose too. And I'll bet her parents bring it up leisurely to you at their visit,,I bet you won't have to say a word. They obviously know you, and they know their Daughter, too. No worries, Sibes. Save that one nerve for when you REALLLLLLY need it!
                  Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough. ~Franklin D. Roosevelt


                  • #10
                    I also would fire her

                    and depending I might say to the parents that daughter had trouble keeping appointment dates so it was too hard on your type of business. No big incrimination or anything. Or just say nothing and if they ever bring it up than say something like that.
                    Money will buy you a pretty good dog but it won't buy the wag of it's tail.


                    • #11
                      That is a hard one Bern. Five's spiel sounded good,professional and direct,nothing personal. It is very hard when you have other family members who take wonderful care of their pets and you,and then a bad apple in that family is a very difficult client. I am in the same boat,except it is a big family,they all come to me, and when the difficult one makes my brain boil,I worry about losing the others. You are a kind and direct person,who is good at expressing yourself. You will say, and do the right thing!
                      "Everyone needs something to beleive in..I beleive I need another Poodle"


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Poodleluv View Post
                        Five's spiel sounded good,professional and direct,nothing personal.
                        I agree. I think I might actually write those words down on a card to keep handy.

                        You all know me well enough to understand one of my concerns is to try and keep this shorter than a State of the Union Address...
                        I like words, and use way too many of them.
                        Thank you all...and thanks Five.
                        Often it's not what you say, but how you say it.


                        • #13
                          [KANK!] STRAIGHT to the curb!
                          "We are all ignorant--we merely have different areas of specialization."~Anonymous
                          People, PLEASE..It's ONLY a website!~Me