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why you shouldn't bash former clients

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by thartz, Aug 1, 2003.

  1. thartz

    thartz LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 486

    Neat thing happened today.Lost a decent sized account in a business park earlier this year.All my other clients asked why they didn't renew their contract (decided to go with a major lowballer)I just replied (biting my tongue) that they had budget concerns.I didn't call them any nasty names or rake them over the coals.Well today the facilites manager calls me and asks to rebid( added 20% hassle charge) he was not happy but I told him I had replaced his slot on the cycle.As upset as he was I still got the contract back because the other LCO was doing a terrible job.He told me that inspite of me not getting the account back originally he appreciated the fact that all my other clients had said that I spoke positively of them.Moral of the story "don't crap where you eat"
  2. Green Pastures

    Green Pastures LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,457

    EXCELLENT advice.

    Thanks for reminding all of us of that.
  3. Nebraska

    Nebraska LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 525

    As a kid my Dad always said never burn any bridges when it came to relationships and employment......being in business for yourself is no different; the bridges are just bigger and thus sometimes blurred.
  4. Premo Services

    Premo Services LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,516

    That is good advice, but sometimes it is hard to swallow the $hi!.
    I had a customer for 6 years and he decided to stop paying, make late payments all of last year. Well I grew tired of his bs pretty quick. Lucky for me he signed a contract, because he said he wasn,t in town for month of july and august but I shouldn't have cut it because it never grows in these months. He refused to pay the bills and I would send another invoice with the past due invoices attached. He finally paid in october and kept calling me to come back and resume cutting. Yea right I will be there on the second, the second tuesday of next week. I do 3 others on that street, and the people always ask why I don't do his. I would like to tell them he is a cheapskate,low down @$$*#@!, but I just tell them we had a difference of opinion and decided he needed someone else to do his landscaping. I believe they know why. There is one customer that has told me the reason, and says that it couldn't be quality of work or anything related to me, but I stick to my story. All the neighbors talk and I don't want to be the one who spreads gossip. Also I am the bigger person, which is reallyu hard to do.

    DUSTYCEDAR LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Messages: 5,132

    i hate when people said u did not cut the lawn because they did not see u. do they ever see the cable company or the phone company do they not pay them noooo. why do some people feel they can kick the landscaper. i have had this problem mostly with my Senior clients? :blob2:
  6. Nebraska

    Nebraska LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 525

    Favorite line to use on certain customers: "Perhaps your needs and expectations will be better served with another contractor." Only once has someone caught on that it was a polite way of firing a customer; her response was "You can't fire me! I'm the customer!" My response was, "Yes your are 'a' customer, but no longer 'a' customer of 'our' business."
  7. proenterprises

    proenterprises LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,296

    I have had many problems with seniors who said i Wasnt their when i was. Their not much you can do to battle the elderly but just eat it and take it as a lesson learned.

    As far as the burning bridges portion, yes, never bad mouth a former client, they could have you back somtime.
  8. I am guilty of it.......

    Just got to remeber to "think before you speak."

    Mostly dealing with business.
  9. bob

    bob LawnSite Platinum Member
    from DE
    Messages: 4,260

    I had a simular story. I lost a restaurant contract to the restuarants ,assitant-managers ,son. After 3 months they caled me back. It seems the fellow was billing them for services that he clearly didn't do. I took them back at my original rate.
  10. Gr grass n Hi tides

    Gr grass n Hi tides LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,020

    Right on.

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