O.K. I need your opinion. And I will just appoligize now for the book I am about to write.
I have a friend, actually more of an acquaintance who knows that I make cakes. And I know her son's birthday is on the 23rd. I have been invited to the party, but never assumed I was making the childs cake. I figured if she wanted me to make the cake, she would ask me - Right?
Now - for the past week she has been e-mailing me about her son's birthday cake. She apparently has a friend of the family's who usually makes their cakes, but she cannot seem to get this lady to call her back. So instead of just asking me if I could make the cake, she keeps saying things like "Well if I can't get ahold of her, then I will ask you to make the cake." I told her that she needs to let me know soon because lately my weekends start filling up, and I don't want to have to tell her no.
Then yesterday she starts talking about cost. "How much is the cake going to cost?" I told her we would need to talk about what she wants. All she has told me is that she will have about 55 people there, and she wants Blue's Clues. I gave her some ideas and sent them to her. All she said was "you are so cute you are already planning the cake. I am still waiting to hear from that lady."
Then today, she e-mails me again - same question. "How much?" I don't honestly know how to just give her a price off the top of my head without knowing what she wants. I asked her to give me a call so we could throw some ideas around, but now she is too busy. So I e-mailed her and said "Since I really dont know what you want, it is hard to just give you an estimate. Sorry, I am not trying to be difficult. It all really just depends. A basic decorated sheet cake is going to be priced different than a 2 tiered cake or some sort or a character cake. I just need an idea, and I try to work with my friends."
I used to not even charge my friends for a cake. But they all told me - "No - we are going to start paying you." They are all so supportive. But I feel like this friend is expecting me to say something like - "oh don't worry about it." or "I will only charge you for the ingredients."
I guess what I want to know is - am I being difficult?
No, you're not being difficult at all... this lady obviously knows she wants a Blues Clue cake and wants it to serve 55, but if you asked her to contact you to discuss it and she has time to get on a computer and email you but yet she's too busy to call you? hmmmmm doesn't add up with me... seems like she's trying to get a freebie ... just tell her unless she calls you to discuss exactly what it is she wants on the cake and the cost of the cake, you can't do it.
You are not being difficult. Some friends are only our friends when they want something, in our case, cakes. Stand strong and don't be afraid to hurt a feeling or two when it comes to your cake biz. If we let every "friend" walk on our prices we will never get to where we want to be on our cakes. I'm not telling you to purpously be rude but in a way I think she is being very rude to you. Just stand up to what you feel is right and don't let her make you assume you are making her a free cake. Its just like you said, Your friends support you and would not dream of taking you for a ride. Someone is not being a very good friend to you. I learned this lesson from not a friend but a family member. It hurts and bothers me as I am sure it bothers you, but you just get back up and stand strong. Good for you for being "difficult"
I totally agree! If she's just going to hint around, trying to get a free cake or cheap cake, then I would tell her no, too. It's not too much to ask to have someone call you with the details of what they want on their cake. Obviously she had the time to email you, she must have the time somewhere to call??!! I think I would just straight up tell her that if she wants you to do the cake, tell you, and if not, that's fine, your feelings won't be hurt at all. And, then you could leave that day open for people who are willing to pay for the cakes they order!!
As far as I am concerned, Bubbles, she either wants you to do the cake or not. From the way you are describing her, unless you really need the money, book yourself an afternoon or morning off. Get my meaning? Friend, acquaintance, or customer, she seems too wish washy.
You are not being difficult at all. It sounds like she wants it for free or very cheap.
I agree with ntertayneme If she is to busy to call you now, but can email you something is wrong. Let her know she has to call you if she wants the cake done. But make sure you give her a deadline to do it by. Otherwise she may end up calling you the day before and expect you to do it.
I know most of my family/friends understand I need enough notice and don't get upset if I tell them no b/c I don't have enough time to get ready/or do it.
Stand your ground, there is nothing wrong with that!
I agree. I say give her a deadline. Tell her you need to know #1 if you are doing the cake and #2 what she want. SInce she seems to like email, I say email her the information you need to know, and in that email you can put the deadline. That way, if she doesn't let you know and when she does try to come to you the day before and ask you to do it, you have concrete solid evidence.
..don't you love it? People think we have nothing else to do but wait around for them....period! If you have contact with her again, just give her a deadline that you need to have the details by....and stick to it! If she doesn't decide one way or the other by the deadline....forget it! It almost sounds as though she is keeping you hanging as a back up plan and that would tick me off royally!
I don't think you are being difficult at all! If anything you are being too nice. I would do what everyone else suggested, give her a deadline and if she can't make up her mind by then...that is her bad.
No I don't think that you are being difficult. This is business not friendship and a firend would know that. If she wants something she needs to let you know. This is just a common courtesy. BTW, it's saying something if the other lady won't call her back. People call back when money is involved. Maybe the other lady doesn't want to do the cake. Maybe you should leave this one alone and just tell her that you are booked that weekend. Let her get the cake elsewhere, she sounds like trouble.
...good point Mchelle! There must be a reason the other lady isn't calling her back!
I'm with the others, you aren't being difficult but too nice!! I was thinking why wouldn't the other lady want to do a cake of that size, that's good money, unless, your friend is the difficult one. I think I'm with Debbie, book that day and tell your friend you are already busy for that day!
I say she has til a week away from the party to tell you what she wants etc-if that day comes and goes-you have too much on your plate to be able to help her-sorry but you tried to help her with enough time and she dropped the ball-better luck next time.You have to stand your ground and set rules/limits on your time-you are just as important as her childs cake....she came to you-sounds like you have enough business that you don't need to be led on a string til she decides....
I agree with everyone here, no you're not being difficult. I also agree that you probably shouldn't be doing her cake...she sounds difficult. If you do still want to do it, I'd tell her that someone else wants to book you for that day too, and she needs to tell you for sure in 24 hours!! Just remember, you owe her NOTHING.
I agree with everyone else. Personally, I wouldn't even contact her again and if she contacts you-you are already busy for that day. But be prepared. From the way it sounds this "friend" will blame you that she has to rush around and spend a fortune on her son's birthday cake. I used to work in marketing-I have met this lady many times over and they are never satisfied and want something for nothing!! Don't feel guilty for trying to be helpful when she won't meet you half way
let me put it like this we have friends and Family that work for my husband, but on the job they are not here nor there. business is business.. Cant let her walk on you, I really think the "other lady" may be advoiding her for good reason. maybe she wants big cake for lil money. and weither it cost us 10.00 or 2.00 to make we have lots of time, Love and Effort in each and every cake we do. If I were you next time she calls saying she can't get in touch with the other lady and if I dont you can do it. say Oooo no didn't I tell you I am booked. Sounds to me like she is waiting for you to OFFER to do it and when you OFFER most likely she will also think of it as its a Gift.
Good Luck and Let us know what happens.
But most of all.. KEEP SMILING!
YOU ARE NOT BEING THE DIFFICULT ONE - SHE IS! THERE I SAID IT AND YOU DIDN'T HAVE TO. YOU WILL HAVE TO LET US KNOW WHAT HAPPENS - GOOD LUCK!
Well - I acutually called her on Saturday because I was going to pick up some supplies. I just said to her, "I am going to pick up supplies, do you want me to go ahead and pick up the stuff for your son's cake." She tells me that they haven't contacted this other lady this weekend because they thought it might be rude to bother her about a cake over the holiday weekend. So I just told her that I had another lady who wants a cake that weekend, and I am going to go ahead and do it. If she needs the cake then she needs to let me know by the 15th. She seemed a little bent out of shape, and said something about not wanting to hurt this other lady's feelings. All I could think about is, What about my feelings.
She drives me nuts. And I do feel like she is looking for some sorta handout. If she calls me fine, but if she doesn't I don't care at this point.
Good for you, I like your response, and remember stand firm on your date and tell her that if she wants the cake after that date that a rush charge will be involved.
You're not being difficult. She's being extremely rude by obviously keeping you dangling as her second choice for this cake. Keep in mind that if you do it for her this time she'll be coming back for another and it'll be the same thing. And if you give it to her cheap she'll expect it cheap the next time and maybe even tell her friends. Not the way I'd want to get business. I'd tell her I'm not available to do the cake. She still has plenty of time to find someone else. Life is too short to mess around with people like this gal.