One of those days.....weeks,.......months

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by turfguy33, Jul 14, 2001.

  1. turfguy33

    turfguy33 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 121

    Haven't posted in some time......It's been one thing after another and by the time I get home, I'm either tired or pissed off and don't really feel like getting on the computer to socialize with my LS buds. A couple weeks ago, an employee shattered a french door......Yea, very expensive. I lost a shindaiwa trimmer somewhere(don't know if it was stolen, fell off the truck or just misplaced)
    I had one excelent customer move, another customer found someone cheaper and had one customer piss me off so bad I couldn't stand to even mention her name. This lady thinks her lawn doesn't need to be mowed every week, so she would call to let me know when it should be mowed, which is fine, the problem is she will dictate what day I should come out. Well, I was swamped that day so I assumed I could run by the next day and take care of the lawn. I started mowing it and she ran out and told me she found someone more dependable to do it.......When I got back to my office, I seen to messages on my machine stating that I did her wrong and that she was furious with me and that she is going to tell everyone about how I treat customers........Hmmmmm, I am normally on time with every account I have, but I can care less with the people who think that there lawn is my only job and think that I am just waiting for a phone call to run over and do thier's. I've lost customers before for various reasons, primarily for price, but I have never lost a customer for quality of work or not showing up.......I guess it was my fault for not calling her up that night and telling her that I was unable to make it that day, but in a way, I'm glad she's gone, at least I don't have to worry about the hassle.....And it wa only a $35.00 yard, I'm just scared about the bad publicity that she can give....Has anyone had a client like this...........First one, and I hope its the last...Maybe I need to tell my clients that the service is done on a weekly or every 10 day schedule or find someone else........maybe...
    Sorry for the rambling but at 6 in the morning I'm still pissed about it......Maybe it will get better
  2. kris

    kris LawnSite Bronze Member
    from nowhere
    Messages: 1,578

    I can't imagine having to wait for a customer to call, to tell me when to cut the grass... I don't believe this is a proper way to run a service business ...How the heck could you ever plan your weeks??? She did you a favour by letting you go.
  3. Charles

    Charles Moderator Staff Member
    Messages: 8,952

    I have had and do have a few customers like this. But you meet all kinds when dealing with the public. You will never please them all and so theres no use in getting upset when you can't. Easier said than done though. I still get mad at them. Customers trying to move around the schedule like they world just revolves around them really piss me off too. I always tell them that I will TRY to fit them in that day but there is no gaurentee. It all depends on the weather and equipment and other factors. I never call them and let them know I cant make it that day because this only spoils them and I already told them that I would just try my best to get there. You will have to egt use to the fact that no matter how hard you try you cant get along with every customer and you will probably get bad mouthed. But most of her friends probably know how much of a pain she is and wont blame you. If they do, so what? She dont know the whole town.
  4. linky

    linky LawnSite Member
    Messages: 151

    Hey Turfguy33,
    Dont stress. She sounds crumby. I cannot believe that you dont sit at the phone waiting for her call and then run over to do her lawn, whats wrong with you-lol I would not worry too much about her telling other people. I have some 10 day cuts and they really screw up my schedule. Next season all will be 7 or 14 day cuts.
  5. SLS

    SLS LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Mars
    Messages: 1,540

    I don't even consider taking on people who "call when their ready". I only have two accounts left from last year that are bi-weekly. I keep them because they are easy to do, pay well, are next door to each other, and are very close to my house. I canned or converted the rest of them. I don't mind if they want to save a dime but I will not allow them to do it on my time.

    These people think the world waits on them and only serve to create major scheduling problems for you.

    These people interfere with the growth of your business.

    I learned the hard way last summer and now I ask 'up front' on the phone (before spending time driving to their place) how often they want serviced. I met one guy last month who expressed dissatisfaction with his current LCO...he said the LCO did sloppy work and left clippings in his yard. I then found out that he would only let the guy mow his lawn ONCE EVERY 3 WEEKS...for $35! I said "sure, I'll do it...for $120 a pop". Three weeks worth mowing=three times the pay! :D Needless to say- the same dude still cuts his hayfield.

    Now I even drop a difficult 10 day account every time I pick up a weekly.

    I have found that my 'bottom line' has increased nicely while I maintain the same number of accounts (30) as before.

    Don't let these people screw you....there are plenty of, AHEM.."upstarts" who will do the job for them. ;)
  6. bubble boy

    bubble boy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,020

    turfguy33, i wouldn't worry over her.

    even if she does tell everyone she knows (most people won't, just say they will in the heat of the moment) one of two things will happen.

    one, the person she tells her complaints to will agree with what she says. in this case they are not the type of people you want business from anyway. the last thing you need is a new customer who dictates to you like she did.

    two, the person she tells about you will think she's nuts, and will see that her demands are ridiculous. they will not hold it against you.

    so either way you should thank the stars you no longer have to listen to her.

    and if you don't have it get call display for your phone, ignore bad callers. greatest thing since sliced bread.;)
  7. dmk395

    dmk395 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Ma
    Messages: 1,006

    Customers like that aren't often worth the trouble. I would recommend getting rid of those types.

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