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Avoiding Clients

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  • #16
    If I show up at my client's house when it's raining, they usually get pissed. A little bit beyond a drizzle and it becomes a problem. I mean if you have 1 house left for the day, obviously you do what you can to get it done. But other than that, it's no good for the machines either.


    • #17
      Has anyone else found themselves so frustrated with a customer(s) that they began to avoid them?
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      • #18
        what ever happened to scott? I miss his posts about his night of partying or his lack of a girlfriend! he has some cool videos too!


        • #19
          There are too many people out there that will pay for reliable service. Hell, you ain't even gotta be all that good. Just show up. I'm done with telling people "Oh yeah I'll get ya next time around" then they never call me back. NO! PAY ME NOW OR I CUT YOU!

          I give my customers far too good service to be bent over without being kissed first. I had to hound one awhile back because she kept making excuses. It ain't rocket science. I give you three payment options: cash, check or charge. No 90 days same as cash, no ez term financing. Ya either pay up front or ya pay NOW! Ain't like I'm charging outrageous prices. If ya too lazy to cut ya own grass then hire a bum and give him a mower.

          Done with the breaking my back and then hope to get paid later.

          Not lyin' either, I carry a blade. Had to stick this one gal once. She said, "Ow, it's bleeding. I'm gonna need a Band-Aid." Went to the truck and got her a Band-Aid. She was so impressed she tipped me $5.
          Last edited by SGL1; 04-02-2015, 06:08 PM.


          • #20
            Cheese is so right on so many points.....

            I can understand removing someone from the schedule and just dropping them, being tired of excuses for not paying, but to just not say anything?

            Phone bill = Negative Dollars I am paying for
            Sometimes, it is just easier to cut your losses and not deal with the headache
            If you just call them and remind them that they have a bill do, you might get paid.

            I have, more than enough. I've even sent notices. If they didn't want to pay the first time, they are still not going to want to pay.

            If they ask why, you can be polite, and explain that you can't continue to chase payment.

            That doesn't accomplish anything on my part.

            Right again, people will do anything to save a few can be polite or be a dick...if they don't want to pay then they aren't going to.

            Also, if you service a property 1-2 days ahead of time, IMO, that's unprofessional. I've picked up many clients because the last company just came whenever, and there was no real set day. If you said you will be there on Friday, and you show up on Wednesday, without talking to them first, that's on you.


            If it rains on the day you're supposed to come and you come..they will bitch that it doesn't look good... or you left marks...if you come a day early they think you are desperate for work..if you come a day late then you wake up to emails asking what everything ok...are you still servicing my property..blaw can't win either way...sometimes people tend to forget you have over 100 other clients and **** happens!

            And then you got mad because he called to not only ask about the arrangement you made with him, but to make sure you were ok?

            Let's say every time someone calls you, and you don't answer. The first thing they assume is that you are dead. Without noticing that it has rained, or any other event - that's what all they assume. It's "Stupid B.S". Yup, I get mad at that, common sense and me get along.

            I wish they would just chill out... the grass is going to be OK! by receiving 100 phone calls, it is just slowing up your schedule even more.

            Now, it's one thing to change the day if, say, a holiday comes around. You have Labor Day on Monday, ok, so you service it on Tuesday, no problem. You are going on Vacation on Friday, so you visit on Thursday, again, no big deal. But tell your customers!

            Customers must realize that it will or has rained. I can either skip them completely, or do the work before or after the day I set. Regardless, they have been told of this.

            yup... i tell them I will keep them on a weekly or bi weekly schedule but holidays or rain gives me the right to come 1-2 days early or late...they always say, "o yea, I understand"....until that moment happens.

            You complain about taking the time out of your day to call a customer back?! You do realize that they had to take the time to call you in the first place, right?

            I do, and? I have other paying properties to do throughout my day(s).

            They have ONE phone call to make... if I have 30 properties to do that day then that is 30 phone calls I have to make... not to mention they are going to keep you on the phone for 10 the hell would you get anything done. The service to to cut the grass...not to be best friends and keep in constant check....if that were the case it would be like having 100+ girlfriends.

            And then you complain about privacy? You are running a damn business! Of coarse your customers are going to want to talk to you!

            I'm not in this business to make friends, to stop having dinner, or avoid my family just to spend time on the phone with clients who have nothing better to do than chit chat.

            yes yes yes....I dont mind the late text messages or phone calls but dont get offended if I don't reply right doesn't mean I am dead...maybe I am eating my first meal of the day, showering, not even home yet, doing paperwork, tweaking my schedule for the next day or doing family stuff. phone blew up after 730....texts, phone calls, facebook messages...all of a sudden I am accused of cheating (not joking...she left with the kid). I have attached the messages.... it doesn't piss me off or anything just making a point that this business can really affect personal life.

            Depending on how large your business is, the bigger, the more problematic this situation becomes. If I were to now implement chit chat into my business, which for sure could always help with the retention, I would have to hire someone specifically for that. Unfortunately, that is not an option.

            My clients receive a very competitive rate as is, and our clients receive a full service every time we visit. We don't have time to spare on nonsense.



            In my area, we have more competition than you could imagine. It's no longer about quality, it's all about price. Our market is inexpensive, and profit is only made depending how fast you can accomplish your work per lawn.

            The business is profiting, but we are working very hard every day to keep it that way without cutting corners.

            If a client wants to interrupt my time of rest, or delay my workload, dropping them does not affect my morale - it helps it. If you want all of my clients who like to call me at odd hours, you can have them! It's funny, because I've offered to have other companies take them with warning, they said, "NO!".

            In short: If you don't pay, we don't know you.

            ^ That's how I do business.

            I could not agree with Cheese more... if we were a 24/7 service that wanted to chit chat and hear about how your son went to Princeton or how your doctor was your 6th grade student (just two stories I heard today) then we would have to charge twice the amount of money...why? bc time is damn money. Lawyers charge $300+ an hour...yes they have an education...they charge for every damn phone call though....people don't question their rates though....people always question our rates....they don't think about:

            time you take to do invoices
            time you take to ask them where the payment is 1,2 and 3 times
            fuel to get to their house and you use on equipment
            new blades!
            cost of equipment... some customers have even said, that's a nice mower... must have set you back a grand or two... I laugh
            wear and tear of equipment
            the fact that you actually pay your employees, crazy!
            etc etc etc.

            The only difference is that their are so many guys who cut grass but the truth is they all come and go...if you keep your foot down, do great work and run your business the right way then you will stick around and continue t build your clients. The customers who let you go will always crawl back to you (has happened so many times this year.
            Attached Files


            • #21
              My favorite email from a cleint...and my response

              I called you and left a voicemail then called 3 times today and your mailbox is full. You were supposed to be here this last week but never showed up. Last time you serviced you did not weed around the garden beds and there is a huge patch of grass that was never touched. Do I need to get another lawn care guy? If I do not hear back from you by Monday morning at 0700 then consider yourself fired.


              James Key

              Robert Dunleavy <>

              to Brian

              I could not come last week because of the weather. It either rained or was soaked from all the rain. All of my customers are very understandable that I have no control of the weather.

              I did not answer your phone calls because I was busy working, taking advantage of the nice weather.

              Regular mowings include: mowing, edging and weed eating. Weed eating is for areas that the mower can not reach, this does not include clean ups of areas that have been neglected over periods of time. I also do not know why this would not have been brought to my attention a couple of weeks ago if it was a concern.

              I service over 120 homes/businesses in the area and have not once received an e-mail such as this and had someone not be understandable of the weather. I was nice from the start and gave you a break in price, even though the edging was out of shape and the grass was so tall and than you send a rude e-mail. Consider finding someone else to service your yard.


              • #22
                Another reason it's great to have a phone girl. I'd have to say that with any business I've ever had my phone girls have made me way more money than they cost me. Even if they don't do it exactly as you want them to do it, having a phone girl is worth every penny. It's one of those things where some people say they can't afford one but in reality they can't afford to NOT have one.

                If the phone girl solves just 1 money problem a week, answers the phone for 1 new customer a week and handles 1 complaint a week she is worth it.


                • #23
                  How much did you pay phone girl?


                  • #24
                    It depends... I've been through so many through the years. It doesn't help to pay a high wage. You get the same for a $7.25 girl as you get for a $15 girl.

                    The main thing is that I can see who calls and if she picks up the phone or not... my sister's phone rings if she doesn't pick up. I can also see all texts and voice mails. Pay as low as you can and micromanage. Personally I like my calls handled a certain way so in order to keep customers happy, I have to keep close watch. Atleast that's what I make it sound like to them.... in reality I just glance at 1 or 2 a day and then mention something about the call/text so it makes them think I know exactly what's going on.


                    • #25
                      Dude......what's wrong with you?

                      Communication is key to everything. Any and all relationships require communication.

                      So you don't like calling. You don't like being called.....then why are you in business for yourself?

                      I don't know anyone who hates......yes, hates the phone as much as I do.

                      To get paid. If that means calling everyday, 2 or 3 times a day. I'm going to call........If getting paid means banging on their door a couple times....I'm going to bang on their door.

                      And I will try to keep the customer and get paid.......what ever I have to do

                      It's not easy with the global recession going on today. No matter who says the recession is over.....IT'S NOT's lingering on and on. People are doing what ever they have to do to protect themselves and their interests...Today, more and more are looking for less expensive service providers.....Less and Less today, does the public care if they use a legal company or some gypsie illegal.

                      People don't give a crap about you........they don't care if you are nice guy, the most educated in horticulture or what ever.....

             friend are setting yourself for a slow death................because of pride ?


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