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  • How Do You Handle Clients Who.....

    work from home and are conference calls the entire time you are there? There was this man talking in the background from her phone. I could not interrupt to ask questions, or tell her her dog was matted. When I came back in, I still could not talk to her. She gave me my regular fee I told her it was....but I had hoped for a Christmas tip. I think it never occurred to her in her haste.

    I get frustrated that I can't communicate with these people. They like the convenience for them, but it isn't convenient for me. I need to communicate. I also have trouble getting them to hear about matts and how it would cost more or I need to do 7F. I end up never charging the de matting fee. I am a wimp. They just hand me the dog, and I don't know what they want or if I can deliver when the matts are deep in the legs etc. They expect the same outcome, and this dog owner rescheduled the groom, making the time go longer. She had said before it was the best she ever looked. I know this time it wasn't as good due to matting. This dog isn't a Bichon,as she says, but looks to me to be 99.9% Maltese. Nearly impossible wiggler to get those front legs or anywhere. I never got to tell the owner.


    Please.....What can a groomer do? I wish I had had a bullhorn. HONK Helllo? I need to talk to you! Now!
    Last edited by Jenneversage64; 12-23-09, 01:57 PM.

  • #2
    1. Quit being a wimp. (your assessment, not mine)
    2. Charge the dematting fee. You earn it.
    3. Realize that to these clients, your time is much less valuable than theirs. You won't change that.
    4. If they decide they don't want to use your services in the future after you stand up for yourself, then that is one less headache you have to deal with.

    Blunt? You wanted an opinion, you have it.

    Good luck.
    "With God's help, all things are possible!"
    Laura Lee Ray
    I am kats_melody on eGroomer. Follow my Twitter tweets - @ZOOMGROOM on Twitter.com

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    • #3
      Thanks

      Next year I am raising my fees to cover such annoyances. Nothing I don't already know. The hard part is getting them on the phone before the groom to communicate or when I am at their house to communicate. That is the real problem. The de matting fee isn't so bad. When they ask the price I add it in usually. Yesterday I didn't because I thought I would get a Christmas tip and didn't want to appear greedy.

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      • #4
        You can probably mention the dematting & anything else you need to tell her when you speak to her while she is rescheduling (I hope she gives undivided attention for that). Casually mention; "I wanted to inform you of extra dematting fees for your dog earlier but you were on the phone." Or whatever point you'd like to get across to her. You get the idea. Maybe she'll be smart enough to get the hint.

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        • #5
          Personally I'd say --don't ask just do. If you have a client you can't communicate with then just do what is best for the dog and charge them for it. Explain why you had to do this or that and the charge. If the protest...oh well, you don't need them that badly. It's a good way to weed out clients that are "not your best" candidates. Your good clients will almost always understand.
          A Light exists in Spring, Not present on the Year, At any other period -- When March is scarcely here...~~ Emily Dickensen~~

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          • #6
            For me it would be simple.

            A. I would realize that he/she is a very busy/in demand/distracted/multi-tasking person, which is why she is using me in the first place...as opposed to dropping everything to take the dog to a salon.

            B. I would go about my "normal" groom of the dog, whatever that entailed.
            When I was finished I would slip a piece of paper under her conference-calling/
            paper-shufflin/"I'll get back to you on that, Hon" nose...with a groom total of
            $450.00.

            One of two things will happen.
            You will then get her UNDIVIDED attention.
            or....
            She will write out the check for 450 in a hurry and dismiss you with the wave of her busy hand....

            Win-Win situation for you.

            PS. I have a whole bunch of clients that just DO NOT have the time or "desire" to discuss their dog's grooming particulars. They just want me to "do my thing" and charge accordingly.
            It's up to me to figure out who wants to "make a date" out of these discussions...and who wants to "drop off and run".

            I think it's like my mechanic going into a humongous diatribe about what was wrong w/ my truck, how he diagnosed it, what all was involved in repairing it....... I DON'T GIVE A RAT'S ARSE....stop boring me,....pleeease....let me write my check and get out of this grease-monkey haven!!!!!!
            Often it's not what you say, but how you say it.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by 4Sibes View Post
              When I was finished I would slip a piece of paper under her conference-calling/paper-shufflin/"I'll get back to you on that, Hon" nose...with a groom total of $450.00.

              One of two things will happen.
              You will then get her UNDIVIDED attention.
              or....
              She will write out the check for 450 in a hurry and dismiss you with the wave of her busy hand....

              Win-Win situation for you.
              That's flippin' brilliant...
              Guard well within yourself that treasure, kindness. Know how to give without hesitation, how to lose without regret, how to acquire without meanness.
              George Sand (1804 - 1876)

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              • #8
                What everyone else said

                Some great answers and attitudes here. Some great wisdom, too.

                Haha, 4Sibes - LMAO. You are so right!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Jenneversage64 View Post
                  Next year I am raising my fees to cover such annoyances. Nothing I don't already know. The hard part is getting them on the phone before the groom to communicate or when I am at their house to communicate. That is the real problem. The de matting fee isn't so bad. When they ask the price I add it in usually. Yesterday I didn't because I thought I would get a Christmas tip and didn't want to appear greedy.
                  Always charge for your dematting, and never expect a tip. I do not count on tips or expect them so it isn't a big deal when I don't get one, and here the majority of people do not. It is appreciated when I do get one, but my business does not depend on it.

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                  • #10
                    Don't price or charge so you will get a tip. I charge what is needed & if I get a tip or a Christmas tip wonderful but if no tip I don't worry about it.

                    Shannon
                    The Soapy Puppy

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Starshan View Post
                      Don't price or charge so you will get a tip. I charge what is needed & if I get a tip or a Christmas tip wonderful but if no tip I don't worry about it.

                      Shannon
                      The Soapy Puppy
                      I agree with this you can't count on a lot of people for a tip and will always be disappointed when "expecting" a tip.

                      It is better not to expect these things and then be pleasantly suprised when it does happen

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by 4Sibes View Post
                        I have a whole bunch of clients that just DO NOT have the time or "desire" to discuss their dog's grooming particulars. They just want me to "do my thing" and charge accordingly.
                        It's up to me to figure out who wants to "make a date" out of these discussions...and who wants to "drop off and run".
                        That is an astute observation and puts things in a whole new light.
                        "We are all ignorant--we merely have different areas of specialization."~Anonymous
                        People, PLEASE..It's ONLY a website!~Me

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Starshan View Post
                          Don't price or charge so you will get a tip. I charge what is needed & if I get a tip or a Christmas tip wonderful but if no tip I don't worry about it.

                          Shannon
                          The Soapy Puppy
                          amen to that!!!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Jenneversage64 View Post
                            work from home and are conference calls the entire time you are there? ...
                            Please.....What can a groomer do? I wish I had had a bullhorn. HONK Helllo? I need to talk to you! Now!
                            Could you send a letter that states that for safety and communication reasons that the owners need to be present and attentive while you are there? Would a general letter get the point across of how important it is for them to be available to talk with. Or, could you just interrupt enough that they'd get the point for the next time? *giggle*!
                            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
                            www.ChrisSertzel.com

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                            • #15
                              its up to you

                              I would interrupt. I would stand, stare, ...wait... clear my throat, say excuse me or whatever the appropriate interruption would be. I would knock on the door, and wait for an ansewr or I would call them if they were not there. Better yet do they have call waiting? call em o nthe other line but let them know...if this is a deviation from the norm cut such as a dog that is badly matted and you now need to go shave down... I would say : (in 30 seconds or less) fluffy is badly matted so much so that its for her best interest to do a shave down to a short look this time. I just wanted to let you know, this is what I intend to do and the extra fee will bring your total groom to XX today. " they'll either say fine; or they'll begin to converse with you asking for more details. Either way you are covered.

                              I will always inform a client of any deviation from the norm.... prior to doing it... however I need to do it. If I cannot reach them but have tried, then i will simply do my judgement call, and leave a note saying same. Short and sweet. Or on the receipt, note same...etc. Next time they schedule i will verbalize .... and then, when i leave I will leave or mail to them a flyer on preventing mats. Or email it.

                              Next time... when scheduling say: is fluffy matted? You know my fee if she is, it goes up from there. and just 'do your thing' if fluffy is matted again...

                              thats what I'd do. people may be busy but i think its a courtesy to let them knwo of any deviation from the expected job getting done. even if only quickly. or at least you can say you tried to reach them..should they get all ticked off at you.

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