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Thread: How to Approach a Difficult Client I know is Wrong

  1. #21
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    Originally Posted by Hollyj
    The customer is always right! Do not say any more.

    Tell her that you spoke to your staff and apologize for any miscommunication.

    I do not understand how she is uncomfortable with help if she has a nanny. The woman sounds like a pain in the azz,

    Let it go. You already have a great reputation. You can't please everyone.
    I like this wording: Apologize for any miscommunication. Period.

    Don't offer to remedy the situation, because you're then putting the ball in her court, asking her to respond. And she will....by asking for a full, or partial, refund.

    Actually, the apology for miscommunication is genuine. For future reference, all communications about how the appetizers should be laid out, what times things should be served, and yes, whether you'll be using the microwave, oven, stove, etc., should be lined out specifically.

  2. #22
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    Originally Posted by LHGirl
    I like this wording: Apologize for any miscommunication. Period.

    Don't offer to remedy the situation, because you're then putting the ball in her court, asking her to respond. And she will....by asking for a full, or partial, refund.

    Actually, the apology for miscommunication is genuine. For future reference, all communications about how the appetizers should be laid out, what times things should be served, and yes, whether you'll be using the microwave, oven, stove, etc., should be lined out specifically.
    Thank you. Oh no I definitely would never have said ďhow can I remedy the situationĒ in this circumstance. In another circumstance, maybe. But not this one.

    When we were on the phone earlier in the week, I did say ďsorry for any miscommunicationĒ, and I did mean it.

    I did write a quick email a couple hours ago saying: ďI wanted to thank you so much for the feedback from your party on Saturday. I appreciate the feedback and the business, and I wish you and your family a happy holiday season.Ē I thought that was professional and kind. And I donít plan to take her party if she does call me again. I feel like sheíd be watching me and be looking for something to go wrong.

  3. #23
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    Originally Posted by Hollyj
    I do not understand how she is uncomfortable with help if she has a nanny. The woman sounds like a pain in the azz,

    Let it go. You already have a great reputation. You can't please everyone.
    I agreeóher nanny was actually an au pair (live in nanny) and she mentioned that her house cleaner was coming the next day after the party. It didnít make any sense that she was so embarrassed to have help. She was very cool when I first spoke to her on the phone but then during the party and after party she was like a whole different person.

  4. #24
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    Originally Posted by DaisyMayPorter
    I did write a quick email a couple hours ago saying: ďI wanted to thank you so much for the feedback from your party on Saturday. I appreciate the feedback and the business, and I wish you and your family a happy holiday season.Ē I thought that was professional and kind. And I donít plan to take her party if she does call me again. I feel like sheíd be watching me and be looking for something to go wrong.
    Perfect email, perfect response, and agreed that I wouldn't take her party again if she calls. You will be "busy" that night, and you wish her the best.

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  6. #25
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    I would nod and either decide to not book with her again because she is high maintenance, or only book if you can be there since she seems to prefer you and if you have another party that day, then tell her sorry that you can't accommodate her. I would not pass along a bad review to your team or hold it against them. They did clean her kitchen, which was above and beyond what they were supposed to do, so any small hitch that happened I would not penalize them for.

  7. #26
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    I agree with everybody else that you don't want to get into a right/wrong with the client. The ONLY time you get into that is if there are legal proceedings going on and testifying. Then you bring all your paperwork, receipts, eye witnesses etc. Your email back was perfect - always be professional. Always keep your options open but you also know you can think about whether you want to have them as a client again in the future. (ALWAYS get the offer first and have the option to turn it down rather than lose the business/offer to begin with). You never know when things get cold and you could use a client :)

    Her personality DEFINITELY sounds like she's one who isn't good under pressure (whenver she puts pressure on herself) and this is how she acts out or needs to to keep it together (i'm using the term loosely). She's very critical and particular and needs to complain about something for some reason. But in the end I think deep down she knows its her as she makes such comments and still pays and tips etc. So somewhere in that brain of hers, she knows it's her.

    Lastly.. there is ALWAYS lessons learned. The lessons learned here can be this:
    1. Have staff take pictures when they arrive to document "as arrived" conditions.
    2. Perhaps incorporate a hard copy iternirary that the client must initial or sign off (always better with signatures) to confirm it is correct and the plan for the night (like the dessert timing). Of course things happen and you can make it clear that - as things come up we're happy to accomodate to make the event a complete success, whatever is needed) - however this is the "receipt" that protects you if somebody wants to argue and withold pay for any reason.
    3. Lastly, have staff take "as left at departure" pictures.
    4. if you really want to go to it - have another form that customer signs off on the before/after pictures that they were accurate.

    Sounds like you and staff do a terrific job (cleaning their kitchen before you start????) - congrats and continued success :)

  8. #27
    Platinum Member catfeeder's Avatar
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    When the goal is to make clients feel fabulous about you, your staff and the service, it makes no sense to right-fight in order to make them 'wrong'. I'd tell client, "My staff said that you threw one of the finest parties they've ever seen." I'd refund her a few bucks for any inconvenience she incurred and wish her happy holidays and a splendid new year.

    Head high, and enjoy making everyone feel good about the outcome. It's likely to pay off far better than creating an enemy.

  9. #28
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    Originally Posted by LHGirl
    Perfect email, perfect response, and agreed that I wouldn't take her party again if she calls. You will be "busy" that night, and you wish her the best.
    Thank you very much, LH. :-)

  10. #29
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    Originally Posted by thisisrichey
    I agree with everybody else that you don't want to get into a right/wrong with the client. The ONLY time you get into that is if there are legal proceedings going on and testifying. Then you bring all your paperwork, receipts, eye witnesses etc. Your email back was perfect - always be professional. Always keep your options open but you also know you can think about whether you want to have them as a client again in the future. (ALWAYS get the offer first and have the option to turn it down rather than lose the business/offer to begin with). You never know when things get cold and you could use a client :)

    Her personality DEFINITELY sounds like she's one who isn't good under pressure (whenver she puts pressure on herself) and this is how she acts out or needs to to keep it together (i'm using the term loosely). She's very critical and particular and needs to complain about something for some reason. But in the end I think deep down she knows its her as she makes such comments and still pays and tips etc. So somewhere in that brain of hers, she knows it's her.

    Lastly.. there is ALWAYS lessons learned. The lessons learned here can be this:
    1. Have staff take pictures when they arrive to document "as arrived" conditions.
    2. Perhaps incorporate a hard copy iternirary that the client must initial or sign off (always better with signatures) to confirm it is correct and the plan for the night (like the dessert timing). Of course things happen and you can make it clear that - as things come up we're happy to accomodate to make the event a complete success, whatever is needed) - however this is the "receipt" that protects you if somebody wants to argue and withold pay for any reason.
    3. Lastly, have staff take "as left at departure" pictures.
    4. if you really want to go to it - have another form that customer signs off on the before/after pictures that they were accurate.

    Sounds like you and staff do a terrific job (cleaning their kitchen before you start????) - congrats and continued success :)
    Thanks Richey. I didnít think to take pictures (we never really had to.) But itís a good idea! And yes hopefully deep down she knows itís her. But Iíll just move on professionally with my head high, knowing we did the best job we could.

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