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I'm so insulted. Need advice. Long.

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  • I'm so insulted. Need advice. Long.

    The other day I went to a new customer. Pull up to the electronic gate, big mansion. Extremely wealthy people. Husband and wife come out dressed to the max, look in the brand new spotless van, very impressed. I go in to see the maltese. The dog is a mess, not matted because the owner brushes and combs it but looks to me like it hasn't been groomed in months because it is an absolute mop. The wife tells me she's taken the dog to a few shops but is not happy (last time she had it groomed was 3 weeks ago -yeah, right). I go groom the dog, takes almost 2 hours. First I had to find the dog inside the mop and then groom it. I clipped it and then did a scissor finish. I copied the picture the wife gave me and the dog looked just like it. They loved the dog when I came in. When I gave the wife the price (reasonable, considering the condition of the dog) she was not happy. She said "In all honesty, I paid $$$ (dirt cheap) at the shop I went to." (to myself) Well, lady, did you look at your dog- you got what you paid for. Then she wanted to know what it would cost next time and rebooked. When I got back in my van and was cleaning up (her dogs mess), I was fuming and insulted. What does she think...I work for cheap? Let her take her dog back to the shop if I'm too expensive. Meanwhile, her house inside is out of a magazine and she's dripping with diamonds. Now, I want to get rid of her I but don't know how. I do not want her as my customer and I do not want to be her groomer. She does not respect what I do. Please help. I do have her email address so I can send her an email but I'm not sure what to say. I need your advice.
    Last edited by wet noze; 02-10-07, 07:37 PM.

  • #2
    you can approach this several ways. keep in mind, that no customer is worth making you feel resentful.
    1. you can be honest and tell her why, but they probably won't get it. i have told people that i am not the "help", but a professional and a business owner.
    2. make up a reason to cancel the app't and don't get back to her.
    3. you can tell them that you can't meet up to their expectations and they might be happier with some one else.
    you have to decide which route is best for you. the first time you fire a customer is always the hardest. afterwards you will wonder what took you so long.
    Certified Master Pet Tech Pet CPR, First Aid and Care Instructor
    "Compassion will cure more sins than condemnation." Henry Ward Beecher US Congregational Minister 1813-1887


    • #3
      Take her money. If she balks at the price next time. Just tell her that this like her maid is a luxury not a service. How do you think she got all that money. By being CHEAP! Don't allow her to talk to you like a servant. Put your head high in the air and tell her that if she wants her dog to compliment her style and appearance then she has to pay. If she does not want your prices you will be glad to reccomend a shop for her to drive fi fi too.
      If your dog is fat, you are not getting enough exercise!


      • #4
        See the Value

        Some people no matter what they make, do not see value in pet grooming.
        I had the same problem when I groomed this lady's Port. Water dog. She said I was so much higher than the other places she took her. But she reluctantly rebooked another appointment. After that second grooming she said, your higher than I have ever paid, but she looks exactly how I want her and no one else did that. So now I have a happy regular client at my price.
        See what happens after the second groom. And do not adjust your price for her. Hopefully she'll come around.


        • #5
          Last edited by pamperedpups; 02-25-07, 03:29 PM.


          • #6
            I don't really understand why you don't want this client. She did pay your price and rebook with you. She may have honestly not understood why your price was higher than the lesser shop. (I feel that before I show up I present my business in such a way that the client is already aware of my superior service and skills and understands why my prices are higher.) I would have explained to her that I was highly trained, I come to her, Dog gets my total attention and one on one, I sanitize and disinfect, Dog is not stressed by going to shop, etc., etc. and explain to her why my prices are more than others. It also sounds like they care for their dog between groomings. She sounds like a "Gem" of a client to me.


            • #7
              New here, but would like to say....

              My name is Kim, and I've been grooming for almost 22 years. I'm currently a shop owner, but will be going mobile this summer.

              Please take a deep breath- I know you're upset, but what this woman said is something you will encounter for the rest of your grooming career. It's not so much that she doesn't respect what you do, it's that she doesn't KNOW what you do. Most people have no idea what our jobs entail, and I've heard price complaints from people all up and down the financial scale.

              You could have definitely said something to her then and there- such as,
              You: "You didn't like what the last groomer did?"
              Her: "No."
              You: "You liked what I did?"
              Her: "Yes."
              Then you just smile.

              Or, a simple reply I like, also said with a smile, is: "Well, my services aren't for everyone." It implies that you are unique, and not everyone can have the quality of service that you give...... you are, and they can't!
              I've got 'tightwad' owners who always complain when I raise my prices, but they keep coming back.

              She rebooked, and she liked what you did. I would try not to take her comment so seriously, and if it comes up again, simply use one of the above remarks. I seriously doubt she'll mention it again, at least until your prices go


              • #8
                The best revenge is to take the money!


                • #9
                  Sending an email is not appropriate. You should send a letter and explain that you can not accomodate her grooming needs. You can mention that you feel it's necessary for her to return to her old groomer if she doesn't see the value and convenience of your services in addition to the excellent job that you did with grooming. That is more professional if you choose to let her go, to send a letter.

                  I don't disagree to drop her if you really don't want her, but I believe you can gain the respect you deserve as well. I have a richy rich that I think was a little arrogant to me. I ignored that treatment because I love the dog. Eventually my customer could see that the dog and I really bonded nicely and that I spent the extra time and gave the extra attention than she got before.

                  But by all means, let her go if she is not nice at all.


                  • #10
                    Hi I know she irritated you but take a deep breath and let it out.Keep doing her dog as long as she's willing to pay what you want for your services and keeps her appointments.Your going to find all kinds of people in this proffesion that treat you like gold mostly and the few that thing it's so exspensive but keep on booking.Try not to let those ones get to you.By all means don't let her be rude to you either.If she continues to bug you than tell her this is not working out for you.


                    • #11
                      my two cents!

                      your story reminds me of a few clients I have. One had the electric gate i had to press button and talk on intercom to get in..very rich....Well after they talked me down on the price for their four dogs...she said I can't rebook now becuase we are going to the Baham's next week...I thought "whatever" and left..Well guess what...her checked bounced.....
                      Another extremely wealthy client complains about the price everytime I groom her dog....and act's like I'm "ripping her off"....I just don't get it..
                      My conclusion is this: I like working for people who earn less money than these people...I think that when you work hard and know what its like to work hard, you respect service people more.....and when you get wealth through other means like inheritance, lotto tend to assume the service related people are "second rate" and so below them that they can belittle them. Just my observation thus far... thank you,


                      • #12
                        I agree with those that tell you to take a deep breath. I would think twice or three times about dropping her. Can't you imagine that she will probably telling her Bridge Ladies how wonderful you are even though she pays so much for your service...but her snookums is worth every penny.
                        I had one lady who would ask me "Let's see, it's $XX.00?" each time she would start to write the check. She always quoted her old Mobile Groomers price. I would be standing there with a written reciept in my hand that she would never look at. I thought that she would never stop doing that.
                        A year later her parent's sheltie came to live with her. A year after that the sweet sheltie was diagnosed with brain cancer. Katie's last hop was over the flower bed to come to greet me.
                        Our broken hearts brought us much closer when Katie died.
                        She still has to look at the reciept before she writes the check. We like each other and respect each other now. It took time.
                        Sometimes folks just make a bad first impression. Sounds like she might be one of those people that must haggle.
                        I have helped people change their attitudes about paying me more than they would like to by behaving like a professional and treating them with respect.
                        On the other hand, I dropped a gentleman in the same gated community when he told me "You will have to work with me if you want to work for me." We having difficulty scheduling. I told him that I loved grooming his Yorkie but unfortunately "We" were not a good match. Never looked back as I walked to my van.
                        Wishing you Good Dogs and Nice Folks.


                        • #13
                          I would also try her at least one more time. Maybe you will have a "meeting go the minds" this time. She sounds like a difficult customer, but she also sounds like she could become a good customer. As you get along in business, you will have these cheapo customers who feel they have to question every nickle and dime they spend. Don't take it to personally, she probably question their Plastic Surgeon and Pizza Delivery boy the same
                          When you go back, if she says something pithy about the price again, I agree w/another post that you should say, "were you happy w/your other groomers? Are you happy w/me?" And have a pleasant smile on your face while you say it! If you still don't want to deal w/her attitude you can always discontinue her as a client later.
                          SheilaB from SC


                          • #14
                            My take

                            IM with baddog on this one. Take the money.

                            You only spend a few minutes with the clients.

                            If the dog is pretty easy, and your getting your money,
                            put on some emotinal armor, and don't let the negitive stuff
                            sink in so deep.
                            Its like working with someone who is not particularly kind to you,
                            but you smile, be nice, and take your check at the end of the week.
                            You win.


                            • #15
                              wet nose

                              She rebooked if you gave her the price and she thought it was too high and she reboked any way you should feel pretty good about your skills not insulted that the last few people who groomed the dog had no self confidnce or self esteem and under charged for their work. She doesnt seem to care about the money ,it's not like she is going to miss hr car payment over your grooming price so it sounds like she had never come across a groomer who actually charged for thier time the way you did. Now she knows there are people who do and your one of them.