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Being very nice won't always help!

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  • Being very nice won't always help!

    I was just thinking about how much I been nice to some clients and they never been nice back.

    Like that one time, when I agreed on coming at 5pm to do a hand stripping (mini schnauzer) and the owners arrived at their home at 6pm, I finished work at 9pm, no thank, no call back, the dog was great but the guy used to do it (ruined her coat btw) himself. They called twice and the last time they wanted the dog to be groomed for her "LOF" confirmation (at French kind of AKC, dogs with pedigrees had to be judged during a show to say if they match the standard so they can get their official pedigree number) the fact is the dog was from a LOF confirmed dog and a LOF non confirmed dog so the puppies were not registered at LOF but the woman harassed the assistant of the organization dog club to get her mom's dog confirmed (without being judged at all), and hers too, what a shame from people who said they didn't bought the dog for pedigree..

    And more recently, since 3 years, I used to groom 4 dogs from the same family, and since they didn't pre-booked last time, I haven't heard from them.
    First when the daughter called she said she had 4 little yorkies, asked prices and discount (I use to do -5$ per dog from the second one so here 15$). I arrive there, the four little yorkies turn out to be a medium poodle, a Pekinese, a York, another York and right that one is a mini yorkie = already we are at 5 and not 4!! She started to talk about having troubles with her last groomer, having trouble with money, so I didn't told her my price was higher for poodle and Pekinese, they were clipped short and often anyway.
    She also asked to cut her chihuahua's nails, which I understood someone gave him up to her. She gave me a check to be cashed a month after, she told me 10 days but she write a month later on the check's back.
    After another appointment, she asked me if I knew how to stand the ears of the chihuahua, and said the breeders gave advice, so she bought him.
    First Christmas appointment, surprise, they got 2 others chihuahuas at 1200$ each! Great for poor people!
    And from that moment, she asked me to wash them too, I thought she'll ask me how much it does for the 3 more baths, but she tipped 5$ instead..
    After that, I've been invited into the house, husband owns a built company, all the students kids have last trend iPhone/iPad/iPod, why are you still talking about money trouble? Of course now the check have to be given to the bank after 1,5 month.
    During summer 2014, a friend of her daughter gave her a Pomeranian, I had to wash him for 10$ of course. And her birthday's present was a purebred Maine coon, another 1200$ gift.
    From that moment, I was always lying to not have to wash all the supplements dogs for nuts. Now I'm at 2 months later dated check.
    Last summer, 2 of her old dogs died (the York and Pekinese), her second daughter bought a new yorkie, he been neutered so she wanted me to get his hair at the same length and this time, I told myself that's now or never, make the regular price on yorkies with discount on the medium poo only. I didn't bathed the chihuahuas here.
    You know during spring, she had to change of car because last one was old and couldn't be fixed they bought a brand new one but not that expansive, she said "neighborhood were looking at us because we changed of car and take a new one, that's not like if I took an Audi or Mercedes" (she came to my house once or twice, because it was an "emergency case" and I have an Audi, my parents had an Mercedes), it was like she said that for me and my mom who was with me, we felt both offended! I may have a pretty car, last trend iPhone too but I never ask for discount to the hairdresser or whatever, tries to makes people cry about my fake situation.
    Since last summer, she didn't called back, I feel better!!

    I realize I'm not nice to the right people, maybe I'm too dumb. The ones who are actually in trouble, pay me right in time (even if I wouldn't mind to wait 10 days) and don't ask for discount. That's not about buying expensive things or pets, that about how she acted like the misery of the world was hers.

    Did that kind of thing happened to you too ? Trying to be kind but at the end the client took advantage of you ?

  • #2
    I'm sorry, couldn't even make it all the way through. That's not being nice that is laying on the ground just asking to be walked all over. You are a business owner act like it. If you decide to continue working with this client lay down clear rules. No emotion, no apologies, no drama, it's business. Rule #1 payment is due in cash only at time of appointment. Rule #2, clear proper prices for each dog/ breed written on paper if needed ( I prefer to not spring it on them suddenly if I have allowed them to pay heavily discounted prices- email or drop off letter before hand)
    Be firm and stand by your decision or walk away.
    I'm sorry if this is offensive but I feel you need direct answer and that is how I am - very direct

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk

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    • #3
      a tip, never give a price sight unseen, I have no qualm telling people "based on your description i can do that for around ___ - ____, I'll be able to tell better when I see them but I do always try to keep prices on the lower end if possible."

      You'd be surprised how it goes both ways, people will have you thinking a BIG Hairy dog and they bring in a medium lab, or a chihuahua mix that ends up being a mini poodle. You're better off giving -$5.00 off or -$10.00 off of entire service on multiple dogs. (Right now I'm doing $5..00 of under $40.00 charge or -$10.00 of $50.00+ which then makes upgrades easier to get that discount back and do a better service to the dogs , happy grooming!~

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      • #4
        It's always the customers I end up bending for the ones that screw me over. Short me on payment claiming they'll be back with the rest, "not having their phone on" and picking up their dog 3 hours late on a Friday night, begging for a discount when the next trip to their house there's a big new pool... It goes on. I've learned in 2 short years of being self employed to grow some cajones.

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        • #5
          I think I'll add a little preview of my prices on my website, with the most commum breeds with differences of weight and especially poodles because they say tiny poodle and ending up being a large tiny poodle..
          I know how to be professional now(i got those 2 clients when I opened so I felt disrespectful to suddenly erase the discounts as I never did before), I don't give discounts unless I've seen the dogs.

          My mom has a boarding care for pets (she's professional too), and the woman I was talking about asked me if I knew someone to keep her dogs and cats (total of 10 pets) during her holiday, I said my mom can. She finally let her 3 cats to my mom and others cats and dogs been gave to her parents...
          So came the time, they let them home, and then when the daughter came to take the cats back, she said she forget her check and she'll be back during the week to let the money, after 15 days she had nothing at all. Hopefully I had an appointment with her so I asked the check and she apologized because her daughter was sick, and she dated the check 4 months later!! The next summer, she asked my mom to keep her cats and dogs (as always she spoils saying she'll keep them all but no) and my mom said she couldn't because the weeks she wanted was already reserved. They are kind of thinking everything is their due.

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          • #6
            I don't accept checks unless I can cash them right away. No checks dated for the future. If they need to date for the future, they should be grooming their own dogs, because they don't have the money to pay for a groomer. People who look rich are sometimes faking it. They're in debt to everyone.
            The reason you're obsessing about these people is that you didn't respect your own time and your own skills. This is a business.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Frenchie View Post
              I think I'll add a little preview of my prices on my website, with the most commum breeds with differences of weight and especially poodles because they say tiny poodle and ending up being a large tiny poodle..
              I know how to be professional now(i got those 2 clients when I opened so I felt disrespectful to suddenly erase the discounts as I never did before), I don't give discounts unless I've seen the dogs.

              My mom has a boarding care for pets (she's professional too), and the woman I was talking about asked me if I knew someone to keep her dogs and cats (total of 10 pets) during her holiday, I said my mom can. She finally let her 3 cats to my mom and others cats and dogs been gave to her parents...
              So came the time, they let them home, and then when the daughter came to take the cats back, she said she forget her check and she'll be back during the week to let the money, after 15 days she had nothing at all. Hopefully I had an appointment with her so I asked the check and she apologized because her daughter was sick, and she dated the check 4 months later!! The next summer, she asked my mom to keep her cats and dogs (as always she spoils saying she'll keep them all but no) and my mom said she couldn't because the weeks she wanted was already reserved. They are kind of thinking everything is their due.
              Never release a pet without payment........post dated checks are only accepted by those that get a government check the first of the month....and only for a few DAYS out even then.
              Ain't always easy to stand up for what is right.

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              • #8
                I think that's a bit different in France, if you can't pay using blue card, then you use cash money or checks. And I know, that's forbidden to post date checks, i just dont noticed as she said nothing. Sometimes they ask me a favor and ask me to wait a week, I don't mind as long I'm paid, and I know where they live!

                Honestly, she was one of the first clients I had, so back then I thought that will be good for me to have regular client with multiple dogs, but I was wrong, and I won't get caught like this anymore.

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                • #9
                  Once burned, twice learned! Regardless of their ongoing excuses and stories, these people have proven to be irresponsible clients to not just you, but to your mother as well. While I am also an empathetic human being (I go every two weeks to a physically disabled, living on Social Security, widows house, groom her toy poodle, take out her trash, etc. And accept the $20 cash she manages to budget for me every two weeks.)I would cut these people off without looking back once! You provide a service, and payment is due at time of completion of that service. Period. I'm sure some of us have made that exception of taking a late payment to help someone (or their dogs) out, but these people sound like ongoing scammers to me. Any service I would agree to in the future for such unreliable clients would be at full price, in CASH ONLY, paid in advance of the groom. Otherwise, au revoir!

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                  • #10
                    maybe one day unicef will get into dog grooming, until that day people have to pay in full day of service

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                    • #11
                      Sorry to read you are getting taking advantage of Frenchie. I know I learned the hard way myself. Getting a dog done early for someone who really needed to be someone then the next groom, "It only took you so long last time." Or holding a check once then they expect it every groom. Squeezing someone in or giving a discount. No matter how nice we are and how much we try to explain that it's not normally that way, we create monster clients.
                      No more for me. If it's fully booked, we are fully booked. You want your dog back sooner, it's an express appt. and that is extra $$. Sorry we don't hold checks, do you have another method of payment? You would like a discount, sign up for our loyalty program. Anyone and everyone get's treated the same. Period.
                      It's not what you look at that matters; it's what you see.
                      Henry David Thoreau

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                      • #12
                        I had to go cash or card only early on to. I only needed one bad check to change the rules. I would ask at the time of the appointment being scheduled, and how will you be paying? They answer. If they say check, and you are still accepting them, will you be asking me to hold the check. If they say for 3 days, then I would say 3 days is next Friday, how about if I schedule you for Friday so I don't need to hold it? Very politely.

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