At what point do you give up trying to make somebody happy

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by wes92395, Jul 25, 2014.

  1. FireLTMower

    FireLTMower LawnSite Member
    Messages: 15

    I understand, as I also have a few neighboring yards. Chances are though, if she's complaining, you're not getting hers. Doing something for someone politely once or twice is the right thing to do, but after that, they are just a pain in the a$$ and you should tell them to pucker up, in whichever way you see fit. The sad thing is that is just the world we live in these days. Nobody has any respect for anyone, and just about everyone is looking for a handout or something done free. If they can't figure out that I'm a business and not a charity, that's their problem.
  2. Sponsor
    Messages: 804

    I try as well, but when the complaints border on almost hilarious, it's time to just give up. We had a lady mention to us that it was an "Ozone action day" and that we should not be cutting lawns today.
  3. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 19,635

    She just wants your body!
  4. Altair

    Altair LawnSite Member
    Messages: 29

    Unfortunately you cannot please everyone. And while I applaud you for trying to be nice to the neighbor, it sounds like you are not going to be able to make her happy, short of not showing up to your client's home to mow the grass. And even then the neighbor would probably complain that you are slacking off and being lazy for not showing up to mow the grass.

    So it really sounds like you are in a no-win situation here. It also sounds like you wouldn't want to have to deal with the neighbor as a customer anyways. So I guess I am with the other commentors here and say that the best thing to do is keep minding your own business on your customer's lawn and ignore the nosy neighbor.
  5. oqueoque

    oqueoque LawnSite Gold Member
    Male, from Jersey
    Messages: 3,491

    Yo no speakes ingles senhora.
  6. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,080

    If ignoring her doesn't work.

    I would tell her to stop bothering you.
    Yup it's time to be rude.

    Your 'mistake' was capitulating in the first place.
    She is now seeing how far she can push you.

    I would park back where I was always parking before, next time she says something:
    "Special parking arrangements are $25, in advance, talking to me is $2 a minute, in advance, lawn fertilizer is double the going local rate in advance, any more questions? $50 per question plus my per minute rate, IN ADVANCE"
  7. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,080

    I would tell her it was national chocolate ├ęclair day, and she should bring you one.... now run along and don't come back until you have my ├ęclair.

    Edit in the same sentence, Id ask her who gave her shoes?
  8. OakNut

    OakNut LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,104

    Doing things to make neighbors happy is not a bad thing no matter what anyone here says about people who aren't writing them checks. You can even do nice things for people you know will never hire you - it's called being a decent human being.

    That said, I think you know that this woman isn't worth your time. Ignore her - there's no need, or reason to be ignorant to her - just ignore her.
  9. easy-lift guy

    easy-lift guy LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,372

    The customers neighbor reads like she is very lonely and miserable.
    Since she continues to make contact with you personally you may be the only contact she has with the outside world. As long as your in the service industry
    you will have more examples of this same person many more times.
    Being rude or obnoxious to her will not help the situation. Remember your there to maintain your customers grounds, not hers. Unless she chooses to involve your customer in any future conversations my advise would be to remain professional and never lower yourself to her level.
    easy-lift guy
  10. hackitdown

    hackitdown LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,649

    It is all about what is reasonable.

    If you were blocking her driveway and she asked you to move, or if you were firing clippings into her yard and she asked you to stop, those are reasonable requests. You need to do as she asks.

    Is parking on the street reasonable? If it is, then continue to part there. Is mowing at 9AM on a Wednesday reasonable? If so, continue at 9AM. Is causing clippings to be airborne reasonable? If it is, then let them fly.

    Once you cave to an unreasonable request, then she will perceive that you are weak and will push for more and more unreasonable changes to your behavior. Next time you see her, give her a huge smile, wave excitedly, then immediately turn away and keep working. Ignore her. She is a crazy person.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2014

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