Have To Cancel An Order...

Business By too_nice_to_slice Updated 21 Apr 2009 , 2:00pm by Katie-Bug

too_nice_to_slice Posted 18 Apr 2009 , 1:55am
post #1 of 10

I did the baby blocks in my photos for my best friend's baby shower last weekend. Well like the next day I got a call from another friend's mom saying she wanted me to do a cake for her daughter's shower as well, but she would need significantly more cake. I told her I'd look into how many servings she needed, etc and came up with three block tiers stacked cockeyed, and mentioned that to her, but she hadn't picked flavors or anything.

Anyway... my daughter has some medical issues, and I found out today that we're going to start her therapy this week. She'll have that out of town for three days, and I'm already booked for a large birthday cake for Saturday. So I've decided I can't fit both cakes in, and the birthday order was placed first (though I don't have a deposit on either) and she's not someone I'm giving the "friends and family discount" But how do I tell friend's mom?? Am I terrible for turning her order down?

9 replies
Kitagrl Posted 18 Apr 2009 , 2:02am
post #2 of 10

Well with no deposit, just tell her you have medical issues with your child....certainly she will understand.

leah_s Posted 18 Apr 2009 , 2:21am
post #3 of 10

I'm sorry about your daughter's illness.

If you don't have deposits on either cake then, really at this point you don't have orders. Just contact one or both and explain your situation.

costumeczar Posted 18 Apr 2009 , 1:57pm
post #4 of 10

Personally, I'd just tell both people that you're unable to do the cakes since you're having to pay attention to your daughter's situation. Like leahs said, if there's no deposit on either, technically you have no orders yet. It would be easier on you if you don't have to worry about making cake while your daughter might need your attention.

erinalicia Posted 18 Apr 2009 , 2:07pm
post #5 of 10

I'm wishing I had backed out of doing the cake and cupcakes I'm now baking because my son is in the hospital and has been since Tuesday. Luckily my DH can stay at the hospital with him, but I feel like I should be there instead. I just didn't want to back out so close to the party.

I think you should just tell them the truth, I would hope that most people would be understanding of having a sick child to attend to.

artscallion Posted 18 Apr 2009 , 2:27pm
post #6 of 10

I have an agreement with a couple of other local bakers that allows me to tell the client, "I had an unexpected emergency situation come up. Here's the name of someone who can do the cake for you. I've contacted him and he's expecting your call. Thanks for understanding."

It's a two way street so the customers flow both ways and I seldom actually lose a customer. In fact, they're usually grateful that I didn't leave them in a lurch or force them to start shopping around again, and come back to me next time. Occasionally a customer will stick with the baker I've referred them to. But really, what's the alternative? If you just cancel on them, no matter the reason, chances are much higher that you'll lose them anyway.

If you don't have an arrangement like this now, I'd highly recommend setting one up for the future.

serendipitysweets Posted 18 Apr 2009 , 2:38pm
post #7 of 10

how far away are the parties? This next saturday? You also need to decide how important it is for you to have future business with these people. I had this happen to me but I was on the customer side of things. I had requested a cake and cupcakes for my sons b-day (this was before I was doing them myself!) We had everything verbally agreed on- no contract. and a week before the party I e-mailed her to confirm and she had something come up last minute and not able to do the cake. I understood her situation but I was so bummed and it made me decide to not do business with this person again. I had worked with her before so I really wasn't worried about the contract because she had delivered before. how I would have handled it and plan to if I ever start selling cakes would be to go to someone else locally and have them make the cake with the design I came up with. I would pay any additional cost from what I quoted the customer and what the other person charged so that MY customer wouldn't have to go through the trouble of finding another decorator and not coming back to me. I work in customer service so that 's HUGE to me! BTW I had to end up getting a crappy cake from the grocery store because it was too close to my date for anyone else to fit me it! icon_cry.gif Just my 2 cents

too_nice_to_slice Posted 18 Apr 2009 , 6:21pm
post #8 of 10

They're both reasonable people, so I know they'll understand, I just hate to leave anyone in a bind, ya know? I think I'm going to call today and tell them both, that way they have as much time as possible to find someone else. I just wish I had someone to refer them to, as PP said. I know I won't lose customers over it, they'll more than likely be slightly disappointed, but come back next time they need something. Thanks for your advice and well wishes for my daughter. icon_smile.gif

MaisieBake Posted 18 Apr 2009 , 10:25pm
post #9 of 10

You're cancelling a week out and not offering any help in getting what you agreed to provide? If it were me, I'd feel bad that your kid is sick but there's no way I'd plan to buy from you again. One can understand without wanting to repeat past mistakes (and counting on someone who has made no contingency plans is, yes, a mistake).

Katie-Bug Posted 21 Apr 2009 , 2:00pm
post #10 of 10

I just wanted to let you know that I hope everything goes good for your daughter.

Also, sometimes business isn't important, family comes first. When the torando hit last year I had three orders for Friday an it hit on Tuesday. I wasn't able to contact one lady until Thursday afternoon, I felt bad but it wasn't worth it. I had family an friends that needed our help, that comes first for me.

Sending postive thoughts your way,
Katie

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