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Sometimes I think mobile was a bad choice for me

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  • Sometimes I think mobile was a bad choice for me

    I have a problem with not being able to shut up. I get owners who want to sit down and talk and I always do. I can talk as much as they can and end up spending WAY too much time there. I had a Westie today at 1pm. I walk in and mom asks me to have a seat, introduces me to her friend etc. This is the client whose husband just passed away, so I also felt perhaps she just needed to chat. So I sat there for about 30 minutes before I finally took the dog out to the van. She's really quick and I was done by 2:30pm. Brought her in and mom had food set out for her friend and insisted I sit and have some and have a drink. I at first said "no thank you" but she kept insisting and I just didn't want to hurt her feelings. I didn't leave tehre until 3:45pm! It is a HUGE downfall for me. I think a lot of it has to do with it's some of the only adult interaction I get besides talking to my husband, and even then we usually only talk about the kids or what bills need to be paid. I enjoy talking way too much and never know how to politely excuse myself. I had even told her I had another appointment to get to. And it's not just the clients talking away, it's ME and probably more me than them. At the salon I could easily chat for an hour with a client but still be working all the while. This actually meant I missed the break I had scheduled for myself and it's all my own fault. I've always been a talker, as you all have probably guessed by how long most of my posts are. My old boss used to say she knew when something was wrong with me if I was quiet LOL. I just don't know how to fix this, or if I even can break this habit/routine I and my clients have gotten into. One night I was at a clients house talking until almost midnight! Had my husband calling wondering where I was. I must either be WAY too starved for intelligent conversation or way too much of a people person. I love my talks with my clients, but I could have done a whole other dog, maybe two, in all the time I spent chatting with people today. I guess I'm just frustrated with myself.
    What a caterpillar considers the end of his world, we call a butterfly.

  • #2
    I'm guessing you didn't have another appointment scheduled or you wouldn't have spent the time talking so you did what you wanted to do..maybe, if you really think this is a problem. you may want to start practicing alittle discipline. Other than that..do what you want..it's your time. When it comes to not calling your husband when it's late and he's worried. that is a different problem...being inconsiderate, but easily fixed with a simple phone call.

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    • #3
      why I will never retire

      there are days when I just have to say - busy day gotta work but more often I love what I do. love my clients and get way more interaction, socialization and support at work than at home- we are just too pooped at the end of the day. So consider it public relations and building your business. The ones who interact are usually your best referrals....
      doesn't sound like the worst problem you could have....:-)

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      • #4
        yakking

        I know what you mean, I have a tendency to socialize too much with my clients also. I view it as "building relationships" & in this day & age that IS what differentiates you from the ever growing competition.
        However, you have to set limits or you'll end up averaging less than minimum wage & could be a Wally World greeter instead!

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        • #5
          Visiting

          One of the things I love most about being mobile is how personalized it is. Although there are many mobile groomers in my area that do a "snatch and run" thing with the dog. However; to be profitable..you must be disciplined. I always get the invites to sit down for awhile...DON'T. I certainly don't want to hurt any ones feelings but they respect me...know what I do for their pooch and know there are more out there expecting the same attention. So.....I quickly state..."I'd love to but I have such a tight schedule today. You have a wonderful day and will see you soon". They always understand. Now if the problem is truly you....then make a sticky and put it on your groom card...simply reminding you to politely say the same thing. However you chose to word it. If not...yep...you are in trouble.

          Poochlady

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          • #6
            Originally posted by A1Mobile View Post
            I'm guessing you didn't have another appointment scheduled or you wouldn't have spent the time talking so you did what you wanted to do..maybe, if you really think this is a problem. you may want to start practicing alittle discipline. Other than that..do what you want..it's your time. When it comes to not calling your husband when it's late and he's worried. that is a different problem...being inconsiderate, but easily fixed with a simple phone call.
            Actually, I did have an appointment for 2 more dogs after. They were about a 30 minute drive from where I was amd I had told them I would be there between 3:30-4:00pm. I was done with the Westie at 2:30 so I thought I could have a nice liesurely late lunch break. I actually got to my last appointment a little after 4pm! Every time I tried to politely excuse myself the conversation would just continue. I have a bad way of not realizing how much time I am spending chatting. That night I was out so late I had no idea until my husband called and said "do you know what time it is?" I had anothe client where I KNOW I will spend at LEAST an hour talking to her, but usually it's more like 2. I love talking to her, but it can get a little excessive.
            What a caterpillar considers the end of his world, we call a butterfly.

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            • #7
              This is the #1 reason that when someone invites me to come in I smile and say Thanks, but I'm covered in hair and if I come in you'll have to vaccuume. 99.9% of the time they say Then stay outside.
              But I'm not chatty.

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              • #8
                Here's a thought...

                You could try doing the finish work in the house... that way you can talk and work at the same time.

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                • #9
                  Mylady,
                  I had a client who kept me forever and I talked to much too but she kept making me late to get my kids off the bus. So I found in my phone an alarm. It goes off at 3 pm and gives me an excuse to say, sorry I have to go. I also use it for my appts so 15 min before each appt , the phone will chime. It is a great reminder to get going and provides a nice way to say goodbye but I have to run.

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                  • #10
                    I frequently get invites to come in, sit down and have a glass of tea at the end of the groom. I tell them "I'd love to sit & visit, but Mrs. Smith and her Pomeranian are expecting me at their house in 10 minutes, so I better go, but thanks so much for everything and I'll see you next time" Or, I'll ask them to put the beverage in a go cup so I can enjoy it on my way to my next groom.

                    Get in the habit of getting their next appt set and collecting your $$ as soon as you bring their dog back in before the conversation gets too wound up.

                    I love chatting with my clients as much as anyone, but I cant let it make me late to everyone elses appts or add an extra 2 hours to every day....

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                    • #11
                      I'm with Dobewish. Set a reminder on your phone to go off. I do that now at work to remind me of upcoming meetings. If you use Outlook then you can set the reminder for 15 mins or 30 mins (or whatever you want) before your next appointment so you can adjust it for travel time.

                      Could the client come out to the van so you could talk and groom at the same time?

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                      • #12
                        Come out to the van?

                        I never allow a client in my van while I am working. Not only is it a violation of my insurance policy but a massive distraction. The dog will be "all about the owner" and ignore the groomer. You certainly aren't saving the time you think that you would be. However I invite all new clients to view the vans before the dog comes out...a great advertising tool.

                        Poochlady

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                        • #13
                          I have a few people who come out and stay in the van with me while I groom. I made sure when I got my insurance that it would be covered. I enjoy it, and though I know it can sometimes make it take longer, it usually only takes longer because I'm talking so much not because of the dogs behavior. I find when the owner is right there at the table, the dogs don't really act up that much. It's when they can see them but not get to them. I did a dog on Saturday that had tried to eat my groomer last time and the owner stayed to help. he put the muzzle on, etc. He was fine for me on Saturday, but they had given him some happy pills this time. I think everyone needs to do waht they are comfortable with when it comes to letting people stay. I always have, ever since I started grooming and I am such an overprotective pet mommy, I wouldn't want to leave my pets with someone if I couldn't stay, so that is why I allow it. I've even stayed in the surgical suite while my pets have had surgery. I know, people think I'm crazy, LOL, but when I tell clients this it puts them at ease. They know I am as crazy as they are!
                          It's the one thing I really miss about working in a salon, being able to just talk all day to people. The poor pets I work on listen to me jabber on the whole time, or worse, sing. Of course, the clients that I allow to stay are usually on my week nights when they are the only appointment I have, so it doesn't really matter if I take a little longer, I have no where else to be.
                          I have to learn a balance, but in 2 years I haven't seemed to reach it yet. Working on it, definitely working on it.
                          What a caterpillar considers the end of his world, we call a butterfly.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by mylady View Post
                            I find when the owner is right there at the table, the dogs don't really act up that much. It's when they can see them but not get to them.
                            I'm an in home groomer (is anyone else??) for cats & find this sometimes helps. You have to quickly gauge the owner's personality to determine if they'll be a help or hindrance. Cats, especially, pick up on all kinds of non verbal cues such as 'energy'.

                            I tell them to either stay & talk to the cat or me or stay out of sight completely. When they pop in & out it disturbs the cat & they act up. Some owners just like to watch & i have no issue with passive observation & for the most part enjoy chatting with them while I work. I find that I have to watch my voice tone & stay away from politics, etc. or any subject kitty is passionate about to avoid upset & kitty adding her 2 cents. Hard to discuss some issues in a soothing & calm voice!!

                            I warn them not to touch the cat due to their likelihood of injury & insurance liability but some owners can't resist petting. So I watch for ear & tail signs & warn the owner to back off when kitty gets aggravated with their attentions. When they yell at kitty to be good or bop them, they get banished, pronto.

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