Customer knows it all!

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by clc2003, Sep 28, 2006.

  1. clc2003

    clc2003 LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ia
    Messages: 284

    I have a really good paying customer that I have had for 4 years now and he is really getting to me. Every year he gets into his mood and tries to tell me what to do and how I am doing something wrong. I just bite my tongue and remember that he is a good payer and I don't see him that often. Now this time he has really pissed me off. I was driving buy his place and saw somebody else cut the grass. I stopped and looked at it and it looked like crap. He told me that he mowed it himself with his old Crapsman that cuts like a brush mower, and on top of it he mowed it at 3 inches when I was mowing it at 3.5 inches. Clippings everywhere. He also said that the blades were dull and the grass was being folded over. The last cut I did before he cut it the blades had two yards on them. So now I am mowing it at 3 inches and I think he is still pissed but won't say anything. I found some uninsured lowballers business card in the driveway this week while mowing. :realmad: I have looked at the yard and what I am seeing is the grass blades being bent from the tire tracks and from the striping. The yard is narrow and deep so going different directions isn't nearly as efficient as the pattern used now. Look at my pics and tell me what u guys think, and also what u would do. Thanks guys and sorry for the long post.:dizzy:

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  2. WildWest

    WildWest LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 384

    It looks pretty long and not THAT narrow (to me anyway)
    I would cut it diagonally next time. Explain to him why you cut it at that length and politely let him know that if you go too short it's not good for the grass.

    Is that his problem.... he wants it shorter????

    Nice looking lawn though! Good job!
  3. AL Inc

    AL Inc LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,209

    That is a nice looking lawn. Some people are just never happy regardless of what you do for them. Ride it out until he becomes a not so good payer or a constant complainer.
  4. Tharrell

    Tharrell LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,967

    Pics can be deceiving but, I like that yard. I think it looks good.
  5. lawnwizards

    lawnwizards LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,439

    maybe its the stripes thats confusing him. try cutting it just the opposite of how you are doing it now and see if you can eliminate the stripes and then see what he says.
  6. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    On that note, see if you can criss-cross the pattern... I've had a few customers to whom the straight one-way stripes just did not appeal, but very few argue with the criss-cross (so it doesn't waste time, do it one way one visit and another the next.
    Oh and btw, very nice lawn, flawless really you won't get much better than that, maybe some but daaaang.

    On another note, I have a fancy guy like this myself, lives in a big castle and has a lot of money and is not afraid to spend it. I dare say he's likely my biggest but certainly one of my biggest spenders, and yes you know it: 2-3 times a year he likes to get on me about every little thing and unfortunately I just sit there and for the most part just listen to him...

    It is something I learned, I have NEVER had a high roller that wasn't a bit eccentric... So long they have the money and are not afraid to spend it, I think they like to ride us sometimes, not sure why but for the most part I just listen to them and be polite and do NOT say a whole lot. I mostly shake my head up and down a little, and go uh-hmmm: I try my best not to agree to doing extra crap lol and also don't come up with solutions to try and defuse the problem (it's just how they are, I think, there is no solution)...
    Another thing I found is if they waste a lot of my time, charge an extra $30 and slip it into the billing and so long they pay, it helps (call it a consulting fee but don't itemize it, just slip it in there). I usually get an extra $30 / year or so, but of course they also get a free service here and there, it's back and forth but over a couple grand that they spend, I don't argue but so much anymore.

    Now if it's just way to where you can't take it anymore, then maybe this is your last season with him... I dunno, it's up to you, my high rollers test me too, and there's been a few times I swore I'd never show up again but their money sure talks LOL.
  7. DBL

    DBL LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,219

    are those the pics of you cutting or the other guy because they dont look that bad
  8. clc2003

    clc2003 LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ia
    Messages: 284

    Those are pics of my work right after I completed it this week
  9. clc2003

    clc2003 LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ia
    Messages: 284

    Thanks for your thumbs up. It really isn't that narrow, but in relation to how deep it is makes it seem like its narrow. I also don't like the fact that the driveway is in the middle of the yard, making me cross it every pass if going another direction. The owner is retired and used to own his own business so I think that he thinks he knows it all. I think personally he would like it if I mowed in a circle:dizzy: :laugh: . But then I would hear about excessive clippings on the yard. Oh well we'll wait and see. Thanks again guys more comments welcome
  10. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Messages: 4,899

    Nice stripes but if the owner wants it cut at 3" then cut it at 3". If it makes a mess charge him to clean it up. Customers come and go and it sound like this ones ready to go. And I would slap a set of sharpened blades on and show them to him before I mowed it down to 3"
    Take all his excuses away before you take his money

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