Frustrated With Client (Warning Long)! Advice?

Baking By cake4breakfast Updated 23 Oct 2008 , 10:16pm by JawdroppingCakes

cake4breakfast Posted 21 Oct 2008 , 9:31pm
post #1 of 27

Let me start out by saying that I normally post under another name. But since I am venting about a client, thought it best to do so under an "alias."

Here's the situation:
Last Thurs dd has an open house event at school. I bring decorated cookies. One of the teachers asks if I can do a last minute order for Sunday for nephew's birthday. I am completely slammed trying to prepare for a bridal show (also on Sunday- I tell her this), but because I am a glutten for punishment (and need the cash), say yes. Tell her that she will have to come pick them up. No problem. Leave without getting her phone number or cash deposit (2 things I normally NEVER do).

Sat morning: I track down her phone number from another teacher and talk to her. Tell her cookies will be ready that night if she wants to come get them. She asks if she can come late, between 9 and 10pm. No problem, I will be up working on dummy cakes. She'll call when she's on the way for directions to my house.

Sat night at 10:30: leave a voicemail that I haven't heard from her yet. I will be up all night working on dummy cakes and she can come as late as midnight. Otherwise, she needs to pick them up by 11am Sunday since my dh is leaving with the kids for the afternoon. Leave dh's name and number.

Sun evening: come home and cookies are still there. Call and leave message: I see your cookies are still here. Please call me as soon as possible.
I fall asleep at 8pm exhausted from bridal show.
9:43pm message on my voicemail: Hi, it's so and so. I was out of town longer than I expected. I still want the cookies. I will call you tomorrow at noon to talk about picking them up tomorrow night.

Monday: no phone call from client. I call at 2:30pm and say, still haven't heard from you, please call.
Pick up DD from school. Ask a teacher whom I am good friends with if client is generally reliable. Swears she is, can't believe she hasn't called, yadda yadda yadda.

Today (Tuesday): leave client a voicemail at 3pm: Still haven't heard from you. Please call and let me know what time you are coming today to pick up your cookies.

I am at loss as to what to do at this point! If you stuck with me for this long, thanks!! Any advice?

26 replies
CreationsByCaryl Posted 21 Oct 2008 , 11:44pm
post #2 of 27

Wow, nice of her to put you out and then no show and then put you out several more times. I'd send her a bill, giving her a specific pay by date, attaching all documentation of contact and attemps to contact, rush order, etc.

I'd also never touch her again with a ten foot spatula.

LeanneW Posted 21 Oct 2008 , 11:49pm
post #3 of 27

I think you answered your own question when you mentioned that you always get a deposit in advance.

obviously that doesn't help you now.

it is possible that you will have to eat the cost of the order if they don't pick it up. Do you have another way to reach them, email maybe?

give the phone messages a rest and be sure you get payment in advance from this customer in the future.

Sorry this has happened btw. What awful timing while you were already so busy.

-K8memphis Posted 21 Oct 2008 , 11:58pm
post #4 of 27

I got it.
Take one bite out of each cookie and pray to God that she shows up for them.


yankeegal Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 12:00am
post #5 of 27

So sorry this happened to you...You already put yourself out for her by doing the last minute order and then this run around about picking them up. I think I would have given her an ultimatum(sp?) with a time to pick them up and then if she didn't show...her loss. You were more than accomodating to her.

apetricek Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 12:12am
post #6 of 27

I swear people have some nerve.! Espeically since she is going to see you on a somewhat regular basis...ok so if the party has already happened what is she going to do with the cookies now? I know that isn't your problem....I know I had a situation last week where I had a friend of a friend order a cake, and didn't get a deposit, and it almost came back to bite me in the butt..long story! I have learned another valuable lesson to not do ANY business without money up front...I am sorry that you had to deal with this..especially when you are/were SO busy..I know I am a gutten for punishment too, I never say NO, even if it means pulling an all nighter! I would maybe take the cookies up to school when you know she is going to be there, and basically hand them over to her with the bill. If she is face to face with you, she will probably feel like an idiot (hopefully) and pay you. I would bypass the phone, obviously that isn't getting you anywhere! I would also "black list" her! I would refuse to do any kind of business with her again, I have done that in the past. Good luck, I hope you get your money either way!

angelatx Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 12:15am
post #7 of 27

i love k8memphis' idea!!! funny! that really bites that she did that tho. sorry. hope it all works out for you. icon_smile.gificon_smile.gif

costumeczar Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 12:23am
post #8 of 27

Take the cookies to school, put them in the teacher's lounge with a big note saying they're from you, then write the cost off as a donation on your taxes.

costumeczar Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 12:25am
post #9 of 27

But first, make sure to deface them with icing somehow...Change blue to pink, whatever, so that she can't grab them from the lounge and give them to her nephew!

GeminiRJ Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 12:00pm
post #10 of 27
Originally Posted by costumeczar

Take the cookies to school, put them in the teacher's lounge with a big note saying they're from you, then write the cost off as a donation on your taxes.

LOVE this idea!

Definitely never do another order for this person...unless you tack on a large "handling" fee and get the money upfront.

carleen2140 Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 3:16pm
post #11 of 27

I would find out where she lived, show up at her house unexpected, and say something like "Since you are busy and can't find the time to pick up the cookies, I decided to deliver them to you". She's screwed now, she has no choice.

darandon Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 3:39pm
post #12 of 27

I would take them to school and leave them, along with an invoice at the office for her.

Peeverly Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 4:08pm
post #13 of 27

Have you heard from her yet? Just wondering and hoping for you (I want you to get paid without a hassle!)

chutzpah Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 5:47pm
post #14 of 27

What a dickwad.

Some folks just have no do-right.

MichelleM77 Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 6:42pm
post #15 of 27

Goodness. No money, no bakee. icon_smile.gif

smab109 Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 6:48pm
post #16 of 27

Very rude... how many cookies did she order? I like the odea of giving them to the school, but pipe big ol pink hearts or something girly on them first icon_smile.gif

PGray315 Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 6:57pm
post #17 of 27

I would have donated them to the local homeless shelter or Headstart program by now! I assume after 2 days, the customer is a no-show, so on the third day I find a new home for the "orphaned" goodies.

projectqueen Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 7:58pm
post #18 of 27

Personally, if it were me, I would place one last call:

"Hello, so-and-so, I am giving you one last phone call to try to arrange pick up of your cookies. I made a special exception in making these for you without a deposit because you are a reputable teacher at DDs school and I never dreamed it would be so difficult to get ahold of you.

In any case, the cost of the cookies I made for you is $____. Since I have no other way to reach you, I am leaving the invoice for you with Ms. ____________ at school and would appreciate your prompt payment. As I am sure you understand, I already laid out my own money for the ingredients for your order and spent a lot of time on your custom cookies. I expect to be paid on my invioce regardless of whether you come for the cookies.

Thank you in advance for your prompt attention to this matter."

Then make an invoice, drop it off at the school and see what happens. Don't hold your breath for payment, but at least she will know that you took the high road and she can't badmouth you. Chalk it up to experience.

Sorry it happened to you.

mixinvixen Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 8:07pm
post #19 of 27

i disagree with leaving the invoice in someone elses hands....i think it puts them in a spot that is not their responsibility to be in. i would revise that suggestion, though, by asking the secretarial staff to put your invoice in her school mailbox, and leave the cookies in the lounge as stated.

projectqueen Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 8:33pm
post #20 of 27
Originally Posted by mixinvixen

i disagree with leaving the invoice in someone elses hands....i think it puts them in a spot that is not their responsibility to be in. i would revise that suggestion, though, by asking the secretarial staff to put your invoice in her school mailbox, and leave the cookies in the lounge as stated.

Excellent point, minivixen. The school mailbox is an excellent choice. I would not, however, leave the cookies in the lounge or anywhere if I asked for/expected payment for them. I'd put them away in the freezer in case the nut actually does come for them. Just my 2 cents!

cake4breakfast Posted 22 Oct 2008 , 10:07pm
post #21 of 27

An update!

I finish typing up a very firm letter (worded very similar to projectqueen's suggestion) and am having Dh proofread for me when she finally calls! She's been sick, still wants the cookies, will meet me at school today when I drop off DD.

I will say that when I saw her she did look terrible (but still if it was me I would have called!). She loved the cookies. I got paid.
Thankfully, a happy ending!

angelatx Posted 23 Oct 2008 , 12:09am
post #22 of 27

thats awesome!! so happy 4 u! icon_biggrin.gif

Peeverly Posted 23 Oct 2008 , 11:28am
post #23 of 27

YEAH! icon_biggrin.gif

projectqueen Posted 23 Oct 2008 , 1:14pm
post #24 of 27

I love a happy ending, sniff, sniff.... icon_biggrin.gif

tx_cupcake Posted 23 Oct 2008 , 1:34pm
post #25 of 27

Glad everything worked out.

Originally Posted by chutzpah

What a dickwad.

Some folks just have no do-right.

Chutzpah, you crack me up!!! icon_lol.gif

newmansmom2004 Posted 23 Oct 2008 , 1:50pm
post #26 of 27

I agree with MixinVixen - don't get anyone else involved (especially people at the school). This is between the client and you. At this point since the cookies are - how many days old? - I'd write her off, write off the order and make a note to never to do business with her again.

Then go enjoy those cookies with a big glass of cold milk!

JawdroppingCakes Posted 23 Oct 2008 , 10:16pm
post #27 of 27

It is good to hear there was a happy ending at the end of all this.

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