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Trials & Tribulations - The drama of running a business and of life. It's not as easy as it looks. Running a business is full of drama. Customers, employees, money, family, time. You name it, it's a problem. Share with us your drama and how you handled it.

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Trials & Tribulations - The drama of running a business and of life.

It's not as easy as it looks. Running a business is full of drama. Customers, employees, money, family, time. You name it, it's a problem. Share with us your drama and how you handled it.
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  #1  
Old 03-22-2012, 01:20 PM
CHEESE2009 CHEESE2009 is offline
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I'm so fed up.

Unlike you guys, I'm not calling my previous clients from last year for lawn maintenance. I'll send them a card or something, but I'm really sick of talking to people you know? If they bite, they bite but I'm not going out of my way for anyone.

This job has made me become so antisocial it's disgusting.

-

Every company should have a scapegoat/someone to pass the blame to. Being the face of the company who keeps the clients happy, and also being the guy to keep the clients in line is IMPOSSIBLE without stressing out. I'm tired of putting up with nonsense, and I can't win being the nice guy, and I can't win being the bad guy. There is no 'middle'.


People are just starting to call me, and I'm too annoyed to answer the phone and can't shake it. I just want simple transactions and no more 'relationships'.

Me: How are you doing?
Client: Not well, my husband is in the hospital again, he's dying.
Me: Oh No...
-waits-
Client: Will you be doing our lawn again this year?
Me: Yes.

I really have nothing more to say to her, and no interest to show that I give a damn. I'm losing touch with my charm.

-

How can I get over this hurdle? I really don't care about my clients anymore. They sucked the life out of me.


That's right forum, I gave you an impossible scenario to work with! LOL




ADDED:

I feel as though clients are always messing with my mind. They do something negative, like avoid paying me (last year). Yet they act as though it's somehow not their fault, and I'm a monster for scolding them.

Like the clients who usually call me every damn day, I end up avoiding their calls (because they are useless), then I become a monster because I avoid them, things become awkward but ONLY FOR ME AND NOT THEM! I always get screwed over this way. I've got a bad tempter this year.

Last edited by CHEESE2009; 03-22-2012 at 01:26 PM.
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  #2  
Old 03-22-2012, 07:31 PM
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Quote:
I feel as though clients are always messing with my mind. They do something negative, like avoid paying me (last year). Yet they act as though it's somehow not their fault, and I'm a monster for scolding them.
But Scott it is so easy to mess with your mind.
You do realize it's all your fault that you let them walk all over you.
That you are attracted to this kind of customer because you really like the abuse.
You Scott are the cause of all your own problems.
do you understand what I am telling you.
IT ALL YOUR FRIGGIN FAULT

You sniveling snot nosed waste of human flesh, You low life yellow bellied sap sucker. Miserable whining bag of puss. You would need a ladder to climb up over a ant your so low in the chain of life.

So keep up the good work buddy and we will have to get together for coffee one day next week.


Call me.
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Old 03-23-2012, 07:14 AM
CHEESE2009 CHEESE2009 is offline
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LMAO

Well at least this year I know to avoid the retired customers. Hopefully I will get lawns that don't come packaged with chit chat.

I get the trailer out Monday. Should be exciting.
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Old 03-23-2012, 01:15 PM
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Scott,

Is there another area where you could service that might give you better results? Is it possible that the customer base in the specific area you are servicing now are just pickier and maybe cheaper?
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Old 03-23-2012, 07:52 PM
CHEESE2009 CHEESE2009 is offline
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Originally Posted by Steve View Post
Scott,

Is there another area where you could service that might give you better results? Is it possible that the customer base in the specific area you are servicing now are just pickier and maybe cheaper?
Well I'm in 8 towns, and I focus more on the best of all of them. It only gets rougher the more I head out.

-

Today;

Client: I CAUGHT YOU!
Me: What do you mean?
Client: You abandoned me this winter!
Me: You never paid me for anything.
Client: Don't crap on me, I know other guys who want to replace you, and I have your money.

(8 months late to pay, chased him for the first 3 months)



If I take him back, It's a headache for me. Him telling me that he will replace me, I take offence to that. I also take offence to him thinking that I actually need him. He talks like a big shot, but can never pay on time. Sad.

I will be sending him an overpriced contract. Then if he complains, I will say, "That's fine, someone else will fill your spot for the season".

In my area, customers drive business owners in this field insane like nowhere else. The people here are very interesting!

In the states, I'd imagine people sue every chance they get. Here, people will try to blackmail you instead LOL.
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Old 03-23-2012, 08:01 PM
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Scott have you ever bid on commercial work ??
If not why not ? Yes it dose come with its own headaches but maybe you might like it better a lot less Chit chat.
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Old 03-26-2012, 10:20 AM
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One of our other forum members talked about how he found commercial work was the way to go for him because he had to socialize less with the customer and they seemed to just want quality work performed. Maybe this would be a helpful path for you too?
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Old 03-26-2012, 10:47 AM
CHEESE2009 CHEESE2009 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve View Post
One of our other forum members talked about how he found commercial work was the way to go for him because he had to socialize less with the customer and they seemed to just want quality work performed. Maybe this would be a helpful path for you too?
There is only one stretch of road with decent commercial work, and most of it is taken by my friend or family member who is also competition. There isn't much of a difference when it comes to pricing commercial properties, the profit isn't really there for us.

Everywhere else is kinda ghetto without any decent parking. Not to mention this wont be a permanent cure for headaches, I still need residential clients.

My main concern is getting clients to pay more, to raise prices all around. I have spoken with some other owners about creating a minimum, but together we are still not able to get others to side with us on this issue.

I have to re-valuate who my allies are, and get rid of the ones who do not agree to an overall price raise.

One of my allies has decided to move out of the territory, buying a home further away. It's not good when the lowballers are actually driving us out of town. People here are too cheap and there isn't much we can do when we're all trying to get the last piece of pie.
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Old 04-03-2012, 10:41 PM
ChrisandCathy ChrisandCathy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CHEESE2009 View Post
There is only one stretch of road with decent commercial work, and most of it is taken by my friend or family member who is also competition. There isn't much of a difference when it comes to pricing commercial properties, the profit isn't really there for us.

Everywhere else is kinda ghetto without any decent parking. Not to mention this wont be a permanent cure for headaches, I still need residential clients.

My main concern is getting clients to pay more, to raise prices all around. I have spoken with some other owners about creating a minimum, but together we are still not able to get others to side with us on this issue.

I have to re-valuate who my allies are, and get rid of the ones who do not agree to an overall price raise.

One of my allies has decided to move out of the territory, buying a home further away. It's not good when the lowballers are actually driving us out of town. People here are too cheap and there isn't much we can do when we're all trying to get the last piece of pie.
I don't pretend to have an easy answer for this, but we have found that customer service is key to everything. My brother had been running the business this way for 20 years before I started helping him again this year... sometimes I REALLY think that he should just drop difficult people more often than he does, but he perseveres and ends up getting paid by all but one or two (and those were the people who left town to avoid paying anybody!) It's not easy to deal with customers, but you just absolutely have to do it.
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Old 04-04-2012, 04:33 AM
CS-LawnService CS-LawnService is offline
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Scott
Sue your customers for mental pain and anguish you should be able to at least get a years worth of beer money and court cost from them
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