I Think I Am Dealing With A Wacko Customer....(Long!)

Business By yankeegal Updated 23 Aug 2008 , 1:41am by mysonshines

yankeegal Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 12:27am
post #1 of 26

I need some advice...I do believe this person is slightly crazy.
Some background info...I did some cookies for her last year for a team. She constantly changed the order, gave me half of the info, paid for half then some more, etc...I don't want to do her cookies again. Real pain. She is also the co-worker of a family member and is kind of a "kooky" character let's say....(hindsight is 20/20)
I was on vacation for 2 weeks-beginning of August. Put notice on my website as well as on my phone machine. She called and ignored the vacation message and put in an order. I chose not to return the business call because my business was closed. She called again giving me all kinds of grief for not calling her. I called her back yesterday(vacation was over and I was open for business again) and let her know (nicely of course) that I didn't make business calls while on vacation and I would not be able to do her order. I didn't want to say I was booked (I'm not) so I just said I couldn't do it. Wished her well, etc...(left a message on her phone machine)

Today there is a message imploring me to do the order-pleading with me to call her back and agree to do it. I just want to be done with her. I don't want her business, don't want her referrals-nothing! I am afraid I am going to lose my temper when I talk to her. Actually, I just want to ignore her-but I think she will just continue to call. If it is not this order, she will try to order something else. I have a cookie stalker!
So, what I am looking for is a "polite", business way to let her know that her business is not wanted. I could just be mean, but that would put my family member in an awkward situation.

I think I need an indydebi intervention!!

25 replies
Kiddiekakes Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 12:36am
post #2 of 26

Yup....I would just politely state that when you are on vacation...that is indeed where you are ON VACATION!! period....you don't take orders...you don't answer the phone....you don't answer emails etc...If she cannot respect that you deserve a vacation as well as 20 million other people in the country then maybe your business relationship should be dissolved.Who cares if she gets pissed....maybe she'll get the hint!!

cakesbycathy Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 1:13am
post #3 of 26

DO NOT feel bad about turning down any orders from her!

"Dear Ms. PITA,
I appreciate that you would like to order from me. However, as I mentioned before I will not be able to take your order. May I suggest XYZ Bakery?"

Then ignore any other calls or emails you get from her. Hopefully she will take the hint.

indydebi Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 1:22am
post #4 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by cakesbycathy

DO NOT feel bad about turning down any orders from her!

"Dear Ms. PITA,
I appreciate that you would like to order from me. However, as I mentioned before I will not be able to take your order. May I suggest XYZ Bakery?"

Then ignore any other calls or emails you get from her. Hopefully she will take the hint.




Amen. Contrary to popular belief, not everyone operates on a 24/7 schedule. I don't see how this would put your family member (co-worker) in an awkward situation unless they made a promise they were not authorized to make.

littlecake Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 4:26am
post #5 of 26

OH man...i heard it all now!...a cookie stalker!

i think she'll go away eventually....if it weren't for PITA and TAXES...business would be a lot more delightful wouldn't it?

Carolynlovescake Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 5:01am
post #6 of 26

Here's how I would handle it.

Call her back early in the day (That's when I am at my best professionally). That is when I am at my best and tend not to cave. If someone calls me begging that is when I cave in because I'm tired and just want it to go away. LOL

I just can't do your order at this time. Let me refer you to another baker in town who I am sure would love your business. They are "Bakery Name" and you can find their number in the phone book as I don't have it handy."

Don't let her run the conversation and if it turns out to be a run on sentence then so be it.

When that is said she'll have some begging plea I'm sure and just sit quiet a moment (this is the silence is golden lesson) and then say "Again I say I can't do your order, have a nice day." and then hang up.

No I'm sorry's, no excuses, no guilt trips.

I do suggest though that you be careful what you say to the family member who works with her. You never know when that family member no matter how trusted they are will break and repeat you just to get rid of them as well. Then the awkward situation is back in your lap.

Best wishes to a sticky situation!

Mike1394 Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 12:59pm
post #7 of 26

Raise the price so high she goes some where else

Mike

summernoelle Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 1:16pm
post #8 of 26

I had a customer like this once. I basically just told her no, and she kept coming back, demanding I do her order. You just need to stand firm-maybe call her one more time saying the same thing as before and then ignore all other messages.

2sdae Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 1:29pm
post #9 of 26

you have returned the messages and declined to do the order. The end.
Dont except or return any phone calls or emails.
If she happens to call and you happen to answer the call then state once again
you are not accepting the order and thank you for thinking of you. HANG UP.

mcelromi1 Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 1:37pm
post #10 of 26

There truly is no 'polite' way to tell someone that their business is not wanted without that person getting offended, but you should'nt have to put up with someone you doesn't respect your time and buisiness.

By her actions regarding the first order and her ignoring your vacation message, she's shown that she doesn't respect your time or your buisiness.
You're just going to have to be honest with her. If you turn down this order it's not going to stop her from calling with another one somewhere down the road. Be blunt. And explain the situation to the relative she works with. The relative may already know shes a kook.
Either tell her that it would probably be best if she found someone else to fill her orders from now on or set up strict guidelines that she has to follow if you choose to work with her in the future (No changes after a certain date, payment in full by a certain day, etc.).

If she's really crazy, telling her you don't want to work with her anymore may not stop her, she may just get someone eles to place the orders with you on her behalf.

grama_j Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 1:37pm
post #11 of 26

You have already addressed the situation...... the fact that SHE doesn't want the conversation to end, is NOT your problem....... You have already told her "NO", so let it go at that..... No phone calls, no e-mails , and most of all NO COOKIES......

doughdough Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 1:40pm
post #12 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by littlecake

OH man...i heard it all now!...a cookie stalker!




icon_lol.gif That's what I was thinking!

I would say you really don't need to do anything else, since you've already called her and told her no. If you end up talking to her again, just say what you've already said & end the conversation as quickly as possible. And if that doesn't work, you may have to be a bit more agressive and say something like, "I'm sorry, but I really don't feel comfortable talking to you about this anymore. Please stop calling/emailing me." Hopefully she'll take a hint then!!!

CarolAnn Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 1:43pm
post #13 of 26

Once you've explained to the woman that you cannot do her order you've done your part. She needs to get the idea and you need not have any more contact with her. Your family member needs to stand by your response to the woman and it should be a dead subject. If the woman is a loon then your family member ought to know and understand that. Hopefully the gal will get the idea and go elsewhere for her order. A cookie stalker sounds scarey!! LOL

mayamia Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 1:54pm
post #14 of 26

When I get customers that I just dont feel right about I just raise my prices for them, or I recommend someone else it usually does the trick.

yankeegal Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 1:55pm
post #15 of 26

I think I was just trying to look out for this family member-she is younger and even though she has made it clear to this woman that she has nothing to do with my business, this woman will continue to pester her. I think I was trying to spare her the grief.
I am not going to respond anymore to her...I told her I was unable to do her order and I am sticking to this. If she calls and I answer the call, I will repeat what I said and leave it at that.
Thanks everyone for your advice...I knew you would all be right on point!

CakeMommyTX Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 1:56pm
post #16 of 26

I had a similar situtaton just a few days ago.
I posted on my website and on my voicemail that I will be going on maternity leave from August 15 to Oct 1st.
I get an email from a lady wanting a cake, I tell her I am not taking orders after August 15. She then emails me back saying she needs the cake on the 23rd of August, is that ok?
Well seeing that the 23rd is after the 15th I'm going to go with a no.
I emailed her back and told her I would not be able to do it, once again she emailed me back , but this time she asked me why!
Why?
Because chances are I will be in labor and a little busy at the moment. But of course I did'nt tell her that I just reminded her I will be on maternity leave.
I did give her the option of paying in full for the cake and if I just so happened to go into labor and was unable to make her cake the payment would be non-refundable. I think I finally got through to her with that option.
Some people just don't get it.
I like Mike's suggestions, charge an outrageous amount and maybe she will back off. If not at least you can make a pretty penny off of her!

melvin01 Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 1:57pm
post #17 of 26

I just saw some of your cookies...NO WONDER YOU HAVE A STALKER!!

I'm wondering if you ship? I'm wanting one of your cookies, too!! Maybe I'll start stalking you next...but I won't be a PITA, I just want the rejects! YUM!

OMG! Now I'm starting to sound like some of my friends who benefit off of my cake scraps! NOOOOO!

I'm with everyone else, sounds like you are set on not doing her order, stick to your guns no matter what. No one can take advantage of us without our permission (I have to tell myself that a lot). She'll eventually take her crazy booty somewhere else.

IF you do end up doing something for her in the future, I'd make sure to get everything firm, in writing and have 100% paid up front. No last minute changes, etc.

yankeegal Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 2:02pm
post #18 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by melvin01

I just saw some of your cookies...NO WONDER YOU HAVE A STALKER!!

I'm wondering if you ship? I'm wanting one of your cookies, too!! Maybe I'll start stalking you next...but I won't be a PITA, I just want the rejects! YUM!

OMG! Now I'm starting to sound like some of my friends who benefit off of my cake scraps! NOOOOO!

I'm with everyone else, sounds like you are set on not doing her order, stick to your guns no matter what. No one can take advantage of us without our permission (I have to tell myself that a lot). She'll eventually take her crazy booty somewhere else.

IF you do end up doing something for her in the future, I'd make sure to get everything firm, in writing and have 100% paid up front. No last minute changes, etc.




Thanks!! LOL!

I will never do cookies for this woman...I just have to find my backbone again and set her straight.

kansaslaura Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 2:18pm
post #19 of 26

There are some people that no amount of money make it worth dealing with them.

I had a similar incident -- after a potential customer changed his mind several times a day for 3 days. He picked at price, he picked at color choices, he picked at design *I must have e-mailed him 3 different variations of the 2 cakes he wanted and kept hearing, would it be less if you left off the right arm of the figure.. how much without ears (ok ok.. I exaggerate, but you get the point...)*

The final straw came when he had the gall to ask me when I would be baking the cake *freshness issues* ... I simply said "Never"

Trust me, I have endless patience for most people.

Even after that he smiled (what is up with some people... were they at the snack bar when they passed out the "get a clue gene"??) and said, oh-- ok I guess you're a little upset, I'll call you next month for such and such... I said.. um.. NO!!

His mom goes to Chamber meetings each month and I was wondering how she'd react to me after that exchange. She has been great, in fact has made several comments about how Jr. and his Mrs. never can make up their mind.. I just snickered.

Stick to your guns, life is too short, and *$$ ain't worth kissin' it always leaves a bad taste in your mouth! icon_lol.gif

michellenj Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 7:21pm
post #20 of 26

I think kansaslaura said it all! There is nothing else that I have to add, other than your cookies are gorgeous!

sweettoothmom Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 7:34pm
post #21 of 26

I assume that your younger family member who works with the cookie stalker knows of the stalkers crazy nature. She must take it with a grain of salt that this person will want to pursue her to get to you. Here is the thing tell your family member that SHE referred the crazy cookie stalker to begin with and not to do that again. hee hee Your both victims to the sugar crazed cookie stalker stand together to be strong.
No means no.

yankeegal Posted 21 Aug 2008 , 11:44pm
post #22 of 26

Follow-up...
Crazy woman called me again today...I happened to answer the phone. She started her act "Why, why, won't you do the cookies?" I told her calmly that she needed to find someone else to do them for her-she tried to continue on and I just said that I didn't want her business and good-bye. I hung up on her! If she calls me again, I will do the same. Feels good!
Thanks for all of your support!

melvin01 Posted 22 Aug 2008 , 1:55pm
post #23 of 26

Wow! You go Yankeegal!!

What a psycho.

sweettoothmom Posted 22 Aug 2008 , 6:34pm
post #24 of 26

Yankeegal, you're a yankee doodle dandy! Good work.

2sdae Posted 22 Aug 2008 , 6:37pm
post #25 of 26

The spirit of Indydebi prevails again!!! YOU GO GIRL! thumbs_up.gif

mysonshines Posted 23 Aug 2008 , 1:41am
post #26 of 26
Quote:
Quote:

I just saw some of your cookies...NO WONDER YOU HAVE A STALKER!!


I agree!
Thanks for the update, Yankeegal. Good for you thumbs_up.gif
And thanks for the chuckle kansaslaura!

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