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View Full Version : Dropping accounts during season


ince8728
06-02-2005, 06:01 PM
So i had this one account for about 1.5 years, did all the maint + snow removal. This woman was always a b*tch and always whined about everythin. She thought that she was entitled to a clean-up everytime there were a few leaves in her beds. Also her mother (old & senile) would always come out and harass my workers saying that "thats not how you do it, or when my husband did it he didn't even need a mower w/an engine (reel mower)". So I cut it for the last time the other day, then i put a short letter in her mail box saying that i will be discontinuing all services effecting immidately. I just got a pissed off message from her. Did I do the right thing? Also should i return the call i'm trying not 2 burn britches, cause i don't need anyone shooting their moulth off.



- Matt

kc2006
06-02-2005, 06:03 PM
Did you do the right thing? Well I'd say so if it was that big of a pita to deal with.

I'd call them and see what they have to say or explain why you dropped them.

ince8728
06-02-2005, 06:10 PM
yea, that was by far my worst pita! I have plenty of accounts that love my work, and i get some to pay more that they did w/their last guy because they like the work so much. I'll prob call, but it's not somethin i'm looken foward to.



- Matt

DFW Area Landscaper
06-02-2005, 06:14 PM
It's a lot easier to do when they are on next day credit cards. That way, you can drop them AFTER you have processed payment.

How much do they owe you right now? Think you'll get it?

As for the decision to drop them, I think that was a great decision. I wish more LCO's would start doing this. I've only dropped one customer in three years, but if I could go back in time, there are three others I would have dropped too.

The whole problem is, typically, the LCO does the work on credit and at any point during the year, the PITA will owe money, so dropping them isn't without financial risk. If you hurt their feelings, they will probably figure out a way to justify non-payment, at least in their minds.

Later,
DFW Area Landscaper

ince8728
06-02-2005, 06:18 PM
ooo no, i made sure they paid for the month before i said anythin. I put up w/her for the last day, got the check and had the bank process it. The nxt day i wrote the letter & took care of things.


- Matt

lawnguyland
06-02-2005, 07:05 PM
It's all about the letter saying you suck, you're fired. Do it nicely, and lie even, just let them think you are sad to lose the job.

Travis'lawnsn'at
06-04-2005, 07:23 PM
I live in a horrible area for business and last year I peaked at 70 yards with up to 3 workers with me. many people were the something for nothing people. not dealing with them will make the job so much less stressful for you.

this year I'm only cutting just over 30 and I only use one helper. I just wait for minor landscaping calls to fill my new free time. volume of business is way down but I'm profiting more with much less problems.

don't feel bad for anyone who gets the axe, it is usually warranted.

shortgut
06-04-2005, 08:08 PM
Dropped 1 customer the 1st part of season I had sent him a bill for $35.00 he sent me $30.00 I called and ask him about it he said that was all he was going to pay so I told him that he needed to find somebody else .
The 2nd one is a commercial Dollar Store and you spend I kid you not about a hour doing nothing but picking up trash and then about a hour weed eating and then 1.5 mowing too much manual back breaking labor for me plus if it rains then it is a red clay mud hole so I decided to cancel it too. Got one more that is more weed-eating and trash pickup than mowing it to is fixing to go bye bye .twj

Mo Green
06-04-2005, 08:25 PM
So i had this one account for about 1.5 years, did all the maint + snow removal. This woman was always a b*tch and always whined about everythin. She thought that she was entitled to a clean-up everytime there were a few leaves in her beds. Also her mother (old & senile) would always come out and harass my workers saying that "thats not how you do it, or when my husband did it he didn't even need a mower w/an engine (reel mower)". So I cut it for the last time the other day, then i put a short letter in her mail box saying that i will be discontinuing all services effecting immidately. I just got a pissed off message from her. Did I do the right thing? Also should i return the call i'm trying not 2 burn britches, cause i don't need anyone shooting their moulth off.



- Matt
Don't sweat it. If you didn't like working for them, then it's your option to cancel them. They'll get over it.......and then they'll find someone else to harass.

Tn Lawn Man
06-04-2005, 08:33 PM
The whole problem is, typically, the LCO does the work on credit and at any point during the year, the PITA will owe money, so dropping them isn't without financial risk. If you hurt their feelings, they will probably figure out a way to justify non-payment, at least in their minds.

Later,
DFW Area Landscaper


This is why I do invoicing in the middle of the month so at the end of the month I am owed nothing.

Nelson lawn
06-04-2005, 08:49 PM
I think you did the right thing, just go about it in a good way.Be nice to her, let her know that you have a lot of things going on and you have to make some changes,tell her sorry for the inconvenience. show her respect , its good on your part. trust me there are more jobs out there.

Nelson lawn
06-04-2005, 08:53 PM
that is some good thinking,TN

HighGrass
06-04-2005, 11:04 PM
So I cut it for the last time the other day, then i put a short letter in her mail box saying that i will be discontinuing all services effecting immidately. I just got a pissed off message from her. Did I do the right thing? Also should i return the call i'm trying not 2 burn britches, cause i don't need anyone shooting their moulth off.

- Matt
I see this kind of response alot. What you did, was correct. How you did it, is what i have a problem with. (Here comes my my 2 cents) I think it's important to face them and look them square in the eye and tell them face to face.

I had a lady last year and mowed her lawn 4 times and finally had enough when she and I didn't agree on how high her lawn should be cut and when. "My husband did this and my husband did that, and you're still new". and bla bla bla.

So, when I picked up my check for that week, I told her that I will be cutting her lawn one last week and that she should find another person to cut her lawn. I will expect to be paid in advance and that the next cutting would be it. She was shocked and asked why. I said because I could no longer cut her grass and listen to the complaints and it was time for us to go our seperate ways. No arguing, no yelling, just look right into there eyes and tell em like it is.

Leaving a note, or a voice mail in my opinion, just don't cut it. If I could make up a bumper sticker I think it would read...."Got Seeds?"

and another right beside it would read....."Use Em if ya got em"

lawncarepros2004
06-04-2005, 11:22 PM
I see this kind of response alot. What you did, was correct. How you did it, is what i have a problem with. (Here comes my my 2 cents) I think it's important to face them and look them square in the eye and tell them face to face.

I had a lady last year and mowed her lawn 4 times and finally had enough when she and I didn't agree on how high her lawn should be cut and when. "My husband did this and my husband did that, and you're still new". and bla bla bla.

So, when I picked up my check for that week, I told her that I will be cutting her lawn one last week and that she should find another person to cut her lawn. I will expect to be paid in advance and that the next cutting would be it. She was shocked and asked why. I said because I could no longer cut her grass and listen to the complaints and it was time for us to go our seperate ways. No arguing, no yelling, just look right into there eyes and tell em like it is.

Leaving a note, or a voice mail in my opinion, just don't cut it. If I could make up a bumper sticker I think it would read...."Got Seeds?"

and another right beside it would read....."Use Em if ya got em"Good call. class act all the way. i like the idea of clients dealing with me face to face as well and not voice mail or letters.

trying 2b organic
06-04-2005, 11:30 PM
Dropping pita's is one of the best things ive done not just for my business but for my day to day life. In fact im writing a letter tonight to tell a pita that I will be unable to continue servicing thier property. I drop about 2 a yr and it really does make a difference to my happiness. Celebrate being the boss.
:blob3:

JimLewis
06-07-2005, 03:19 AM
From what you describe, you most certainly did the right thing. Dropping PITA customers is always in order. And it's the only way to communicate to them that maybe they are a PITA. After enough LCOs drop them, maybe one day they'll realize it's THEM.

Then again, maybe they never will.

Either way, it's always better to focus your attention on your good customers who don't treat you this way.

I am not surprised at her reaction. Should you call her back? Heck no! What would it accomplish - absolutely nothing.

Forget her name and move on.