Not Sure What To Do Here Not Exactly Cake Here

Decorating By Ginni Updated 16 Jan 2010 , 3:35pm by FACSlady

Ginni Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 8:17pm
post #1 of 65

This isn't exactly a cake disaster but since someone on here might have run into this before, I need some advice.

I work at a Christian school. One of the VIP moms asked me to do brownies for Christmas grams for the school. Thinking it was just going to be brownie squares, I agreed especially since this was almost 2 months ago. They came to me on last Thursday and said they needed 280 of them for Tuesday. They also changed the order from squares to large, cut out, iced, and individually wrapped brownies. They kept telling me to just let them know a price when I dropped them off and they would take care of it.

So I dropped some of them off on Monday and the rest on Tuesday. I had to take off work to finish them. They were selling them to the kids for $3. I decided that $1.25 would be a good price since it was for the school. They came to me for the price and I told them and now they want to see itemized receipts for all 75 brownie mixes, all my sugar, meringue powder, colors, flavors....... I don't have them. But I'm a little insulted that in a business, someone would ask to see my receipts for deciding what my price should be.

Does anyone else show receipts for cakes or anything else? I sat down and added everything up and if I added my time and everything else, and it came up to being over $7.00 a brownie. they are holding some of the money until I can show proof of why I am charging so much. I thought I was giving them a pretty good break.

What should I do? These people also control my paycheck and my job at the school.

64 replies
__Jamie__ Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 8:21pm
post #2 of 65

Oh goodness. Another example of why you have to, must, no buts about it, agree on a price before you crack an egg. This is awful. I don't know how you can get out of this. icon_sad.gif

__Jamie__ Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 8:24pm
post #3 of 65

And no Ginni, in the business world, we don't show our receipts for our materials. That's not how it works. We give a quote, if they agree to it, they pay a deposit, or the entire amount long before we start making something. Otherwise, well....what happened to you is what possibly happens.

Ginni Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 8:26pm
post #4 of 65

Yeah this is one of the first times I didn't give them a price before I started. I've never done brownies for an order before so I had no idea on how much it would cost. I'm beginning think they are trying to take advantage of me because I'm 21.

Ginni Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 8:29pm
post #5 of 65

I'm still definitely learning. I would have never thought to have a deposit before I made them. Something else I can learn from this is to keep receipts. They did give me a lecture about running a business and keeping receipts. I've always added everything up and then threw the receipts away. I guess I wont do that again. But I don't think I will show them anything except that maybe they should have paid $7.00 a brownie

cakegrandma Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 8:35pm
post #6 of 65

If you can give them an amount for however many mixes you used for the brownies as well as the ingredients for the icings and whatever you used to mix the brownies then hopefully that should be sufficient to get paid the money that is owed you. I would also let the person in charge know that these costs certainly do not cover your time involved in baking, decorating or packing the brownies so they got a bargain. Hopefully this has taught you to determine a fee before starting and get a signed contract. Hope this reluctant person pays you all that is due to you.
evelyn

2SchnauzerLady Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 8:37pm
post #7 of 65

Give them a receipt that spells out your hourly wage for doing these.

Ginni Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 8:40pm
post #8 of 65

What do your contracts look like? Thanks for all of your advice

mallorymaid Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 8:42pm
post #9 of 65

I'm curious, when the school buys books is there a cost break down in the receipt, or do they ask the company for the $ amounts for paper, ink, glue, typing, editing, printing etc., if they have pizza days does the receipt or do they ask for a cost break down for the flour, yeast, salt, sugar, oil, cheese, sauce, pepperone, labour, utilities etc.,

Ginni Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 8:48pm
post #10 of 65

mallorymaid

that is kinda what I was thinking. Nobody has ever asked to see receipts for supplies before and I doubt they ask anyone else for receipts.

they are saying they need to see them so the other parents who are part of the VIP club for the school know what they money was spent for.....but I don't think that she would have gotten those brownies cheaper at any bakery in Baton Rouge and I definitely don't think any other bakery would be willing to show their receipts.

I've been doing cake for about 2 years but I'm just now getting into doing then for other people and trying to keep a business. I'm still pretty much lost on this aspect of cake decorating.

tiggy2 Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 8:57pm
post #11 of 65

That is so rediculous I'm speechless. Do you get recipts for school lunches to see if they are priced right? I'd tell them I don't have them but they are welcome to call grocery stores to get prices of ingredients. Then they would also need to add in gas, elec. water, etc.

juleebug Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:07pm
post #12 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ginni

One of the VIP moms asked me to do brownies for Christmas grams for the school. Does anyone else show receipts for cakes or anything else? I sat down and added everything up and if I added my time and everything else, and it came up to being over $7.00 a brownie. they are holding some of the money until I can show proof of why I am charging so much. I thought I was giving them a pretty good break. What should I do? These people also control my paycheck and my job at the school.




No, no one else shows receipts, either. Most intelligent people realize it's the customization/artistry that they are paying for and not just the supplies. Unfortunately, it seems that you aren't dealing with intelligent people.

I would show the receipts (or tally of supplies in your case) and don't forget to include an estimate of electic usage, the individual wrappings AND a fee (anywhere from $25 - $50) for the last minute order change.

I think part of the problem may be that these people know you are afraid of their control over your job & paycheck. I would DEMAND (DEMAND... not ask for) payment IN FULL immediately. Once I had it, I would politely inform them it would be a cold day in... the Bahamas icon_twisted.gif before I EVER baked anything for them again.

Is there any way this could be taken in front of your school board? I would think that whoever is pulling this stunt wouldn't want it to be known that they are behaving in this manner when they represent a CHRISTIAN school.
Hope you get it all worked out.

Ginni Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:07pm
post #13 of 65

I did sit down and write out what I spent and on what on a piece of paper. Should I show that to them or say no I'm not going to show you what I spend on my business?

KHalstead Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:09pm
post #14 of 65

ok, there is a couple things wrong with this scenario.

First of all you're saying this order came from a "Christian school"...that is dispicable for them to insult you by insinuating that your brownies are only worth the ingredients used to make them. If it was a matter of just mixing the batter and baking, someone else could have done it.

type up an invoice for them, if you pm me your business info I will make one for you... they do not need to know what YOUR costs are! However, if you choose to disclose it then that's your business. I have NEVER had someone ask for that information (unless it was my mom, out of curiosity)............lesson learned on making them before agreeing on a price, but they are nearly tripling the cost so what's the issue???

I would tell them that this is your price (you have to stick to your guns here, as hard as it may be) and if they don't feel that they are worth it, then you'll take the brownies back.

In the future, maybe when you do stuff for them you can give them a list of stuff you need and let them buy it and then tell them you'll charge a flat rate of $50 or whatever for the labor involved.

I will help you break this all down on an invoice if you'd like? Pm me!

Ginni Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:11pm
post #15 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by juleebug

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ginni

One of the VIP moms asked me to do brownies for Christmas grams for the school. Does anyone else show receipts for cakes or anything else? I sat down and added everything up and if I added my time and everything else, and it came up to being over $7.00 a brownie. they are holding some of the money until I can show proof of why I am charging so much. I thought I was giving them a pretty good break. What should I do? These people also control my paycheck and my job at the school.



No, no one else shows receipts, either. Most intelligent people realize it's the customization/artistry that they are paying for and not just the supplies. Unfortunately, it seems that you aren't dealing with intelligent people.
I would show the receipts (or tally of supplies in your case) and don't forget to include an estimate of electic usage, the individual wrappings AND a fee (anywhere from $25 - $50) for the last minute order change.
I think part of the problem may be that these people know you are afraid of their control over your job & paycheck. I would DEMAND (DEMAND... not ask for) payment IN FULL immediately. Once I had it, I would politely inform them it would be a cold day in... the Bahamas icon_twisted.gif before I EVER baked anything for them again.
Is there any way this could be taken in front of your school board? I would think that whoever is pulling this stunt wouldn't want it to be known that they are behaving in this manner when they represent a CHRISTIAN school.
Hope you get it all worked out.




There is a board but the only people who are allowed to go before it is the director, his assistants or the lady that ordered the brownies

mallorymaid Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:18pm
post #16 of 65

I get that they need a receipt to account for money spent so that is what I would give them, indicating exactly what they received 280 custom cut, individually iced and wrapped brownies @ $1.25 per brownie, include the date received, amount paid and outstanding balance owing

Ginni Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:28pm
post #17 of 65

I actually did give them a receipt for 270 brownies at $1.25 a piece, they gave me some of the money and wrote down that they still owe me the rest and when I brought them receipts of exactly what I spent that they would give me the rest. I kept the paper that they gave me.

I don't know if its just that I'm so young and so they don't think I deserve that much or if they thought that I would do if for free or what, but they have seen my cakes and always loved them. I know they were probably trying to help me by giving me business too. I don't think they will ever ask me to do anything else though. There goes like a third of my business.

juleebug Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:29pm
post #18 of 65

Try being firm with her... I really feel like she's just a bully who thinks you will back down and let her do this to you. If it's still not resolved, start with whoever has control over her and work your way up until you get paid.

And, don't let ANYONE make you feel like you are being petty because you expect payment, because that's probably her next move... you were approached to do them in exchange for payment.

If none of that works... let go and let God, honey. I would tell her to her face, "By not paying me, you are stealing from me. And I want you to know that if God has to take it from your hands and send it through 15 other people, I will get it back because He will not allow you to steal from His child."

Mensch Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:30pm
post #19 of 65

It is not that you're young.... it's just that they're just a-holes.

Ginni Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:31pm
post #20 of 65

juleebug
i like your thinking lol

juleebug Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:32pm
post #21 of 65

I can't take the credit for that. I heard Joyce Myer tell a story once how someone had cheated her husband in a business deal and that's a paraphrase of what Dave said to them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ginni

I don't think they will ever ask me to do anything else though. There goes like a third of my business.




She knows you think that and is taking advantage of you.

Ginni Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:39pm
post #22 of 65

lol i do like that saying though.

I think I might show them a breakdown of everything and let them know how much it might have cost at a real bakery.

In all honesty, I am losing money I think. They should have paid me at least $4.00 a brownie because each one was iced and decorated with royal icing. It wasn't just like chocolate fudge icing. Although I did try fudge icing at first. So I'm really losing money on this.

DeeDelightful Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:43pm
post #23 of 65

So they made over $800 selling your brownies and don't want to pay you $337?????? I would NOT show an itemized break down on a grocery receipt. THAT has nothing to do with it, because it is none of their business to determine your cost for the final product. I'd stick to my guns, state firmly: $1.25 per brownie (individually iced and packaged!!!!). If they decide not to pay, it will be a lesson learned and you can decide if you want to go to Judge Judy. On top of that, I would dare myself to take another order from them and i'd bring Little Debbie snacks to the next potluck.

FromScratch Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:48pm
post #24 of 65

Sure... give her an itemized list and let her know that you were wrong and they are actually much more per brownie... icon_wink.gif

I am sure that you are losing money on this order. Between the mixes and the oil and the eggs and the stuff to make the icing and the packaging... no way $1.25 per brownie covers the raw materials... nevermind your labor.

Ginni Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:51pm
post #25 of 65

they did actually make over $800 on them. I know the school does need the fundraiser too that is why I kinda feel bad but I get paid minimum wage from them. Thats $7.25 and hour and I've been there over 2 years. The people that work there (including me) work there out of loyalty to the church because I could teach preschool anywhere else and make more. So on the other hand, I don't feel bad.

Mensch Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:56pm
post #26 of 65

If the school isn't loyal to employees, why should employees be loyal to the school.

Twisted.

DeeDelightful Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 9:56pm
post #27 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ginni

they did actually make over $800 on them. I know the school does need the fundraiser too that is why I kinda feel bad but I get paid minimum wage from them. Thats $7.25 and hour and I've been there over 2 years. The people that work there (including me) work there out of loyalty to the church because I could teach preschool anywhere else and make more. So on the other hand, I don't feel bad.




They need the fund raiser and they asked YOU to make the goods for the fundraiser. It's a lesson learned they should have found out what their initial investment would be and decided if they could make the profit they wanted to make, but YOUR price is YOUR price and i would stick to the $1.25 or like the other CC'er said, go up on the price because after evaluating the TRUE costs, you have determined they are worth more! The ball is in your court.

Ginni Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 10:02pm
post #28 of 65

I am probably going to stick with this price because I do need their reference later on if I ever do decide to quit. I will definatelly never do anything else for them again. I never thought that they would do this to me. I really want to just say NO I'm not showing you anything, because they gave me almost all of it, but I really want to show them how much those things were really worth too.

I am not loyal to the school at all. We are loyal to the church itself. And the public schools are not on the top of the charts, so coming from a well respected private school is a good way to get a better paying better job. I'm getting married in january 2011 so I will probably be quitting after this school year because I need a better paying job and I will have more education to back me up.

sadsmile Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 10:27pm
post #29 of 65

That is a really low thing to do. Say, Sure whatever the cost it will be fine... until they add it up and don't want to pay $337.00 That's like hey we don't believe they cost that much and we have decided that after the fact we are only paying for your ingredients so cough up the receipts because we don't believe they cost that much to make even. Wow a new all time low. And not to mention all the time you spent, mixing, baking, cutting, decorating and cleaning up after. I would make a request to appear before the board there is no need for them to hide in a closet and not address you personally. Tell them next time to buy Little Debbie's. They wouldn't get decorated individually wrapped brownies for less unless they were Little Debbie's. That was really nice of you to cut such a deal too.

BlakesCakes Posted 16 Dec 2009 , 10:32pm
post #30 of 65

They have no right to hold the money--for any reason--because they received the product, accepted the product, and re-sold the product.

They have no right to request receipts for ingredients, or anything else. For all they know, the ingredients were gifts to you that you chose to use for their product.

They received a receipt that showed how many they received and what each cost. That is all that they're entitled to.

I would bill them for the remainder, with NO additional specifics (other than, perhaps, making up any difference by inserting an hourly wage), mark the bill as "Past Due", give them 30 days to pay the balance before instituting a 10%/month Late Fee, and let them know that at the end of 90 days, if the balance has not been paid, that I will be taking them to Small
Claims Court for the balance--AND I WOULD STICK TO IT, NO MATTER WHAT!

These "VIPS" are being bullies and merely hoping to make you ashamed so that you'll go away and shut up. Instead of allowing them to win, SHOW THEM WHO IS BOSS--AND NEVER, EVER, MAKE ANYTHING FOR THEM (OR ANYONE ELSE) WITHOUT GIVING A PRICE UP FRONT AND COLLECTING A DEPOSIT!

Rae

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