Scared I Screwed Up, What To Do?

Business By karateka Updated 9 Jan 2011 , 7:45pm by karateka

karateka Posted 5 Jan 2011 , 3:04am
post #1 of 18

I was going through my calendar and emails today, double checking things, seeing if I needed to follow up with anyone, and contacted the lady I remembered I had down for a tasting this coming weekend.

I was then suddenly seized with the certainty that I had someone else scheduled and couldn't find her. I remember talking to her because she hung up on me, called right back to apologize.

I think I remember writing down her name on my calendar in the kitchen. I can't remember if I wrote down her phone number or asked if I'd use the one in my caller ID.

I am FREAKING OUT! The only names on my calendar already showed for their tasting in December. What the heck to I do now? I checked my caller ID. It doesn't list 2 consecutive calls from the same phone number, so I can't check that way. I went through every piece of paper I could find, looking for a scribbled note, name and date, ets.....nada. I know she called....the other emailed me.

I guess it won't be a total disaster unless I scheduled them both for the same time. I can get out more cake and have it thawed, have extra plates clean and extra water bottles cold. But what if they show up together? I have NO IDEA what I would do in that circumstance. And I really can't afford to screw up and alienate potential customers. Why am I such a colossal idiot?

icon_cry.gif (insert freak out emoticon here)

17 replies
nonnyscakes Posted 5 Jan 2011 , 5:30pm
post #2 of 18

karateka, If your phone is anything like mine, it doesn't show multiple calls in the caller ID from the same number. If you have itemized billing, you might be able to access your detailed phone activity online to see if you can find where multiple/consecutive calls were made....
Hope that helps - and best of luck to you.

costumeczar Posted 5 Jan 2011 , 6:17pm
post #3 of 18

Don't paic, just get the extra cake ready, and if she shows up apologize and do both appts at the same time. Sometimes it's good to have two clients there at once, depending on how chatty they are they get each other excited about their cakes.

karateka Posted 5 Jan 2011 , 6:27pm
post #4 of 18

I checked my bill and it only shows outgoing calls. I'm such a dolt.

Costumeczar....would you offer any kind of compensation? Some discount or other for the inconvenience of having to share, when I promise "private appointment" ?

Of course I'd have to offer it to both of them. And I'm horrible at on the spot calm, fluid, responses...

"Oh, crap, I screwed up big time! If you can manage to trust that I won't do the same to your cake on your big day, I'll offer you $50 off your wedding for having to sit here and make nice with another strange bride!"

I am generally so good about writing this stuff down. Is this a situation where you PRAY for a no show?

costumeczar Posted 5 Jan 2011 , 7:44pm
post #5 of 18

It wouldn't hurt to offer free delivery or something like that. Don't apologize more than once, though, you don't want to be grovelling, that makes you look more frantic than you need to!

Just say that you made a mistake and double-booked the time, but that you can have both of them taste cake at the same time, then work on designs. While they're tasting you can ask basic questions like the guest count and any other specifics that you need for the contracts. If one person isn't sure what she wants she could be looking at pictures of cakes while the other person talks to you about her design, or you can just talk to both of them alternately. Just don't let one sit there for a long period of time while you ignore her, try to go back and forth some so that they both feel engaged all the time.

Brides are really interested in what other brides are planning, so it might not be too bad. I've had people show up really late or really early for appointments before, and I've ended up having to deal with them at the same time. Offering a free delivery will make them both happy, or at least take the edge off if they're mad about it! Don't mention it until you get to the pricing, and just say "Because it was my mistake about today's scheduling, I'll leave the delivery charge off to try to make up for that. I apologize again..." Then add it all up without mentioning it again. When you show them their totals don't let the other bride see it, either, just say "This would be the total, and the deposit is this amount" while showing the pepers to them. that's the one thing people are touchy about, they don't want their finances broadcast everywhere.

karateka Posted 6 Jan 2011 , 12:12am
post #6 of 18

Sigh....My DD confirmed that the hang up/call back incident happened about a week ago. So, therefore, I def have a tasting scheduled that I have no idea what time/how many. Going to tear my shop apart next, looking for something I probably scribbled on like a moron.

Jim says he'd meet whoever got there second out front, tell them that one appt is running late and escort them to the kitchen and let them taste cake.

I just want to smack myself with something hard.

Thank you for letting me vent.

Kiddiekakes Posted 6 Jan 2011 , 1:50am
post #7 of 18

Be calm..It will all fall into place....

Swede-cakes Posted 6 Jan 2011 , 2:08am
post #8 of 18

Take a deep breath, and thank Jim for that great idea! That sounds like it will work out just fine. What a good guy he is. thumbs_up.gif Best of luck!

tryingcake Posted 6 Jan 2011 , 4:46am
post #9 of 18

Stop freaking yourself out right now!!!!! It's not a big issue. Be prepared for two consults and be done with it. Do not apologize. "ACT" as though it's the most normal thing in the world. If they complain - and they won't - be ready. I watched Disney Weddings once - they had 4 couples -that's 8 people - at their tasting appointment - and it was a tiny room around around a stainless steel commercial table. I once scheduled two couples on purpose. I always schedule a minimum of three couples for catering tastings.

Here's what I tell them - thank you for coming. I like to book multiple customers because that saves me money which saves you money. I have ALWAYS gotten a smile from that. And I tell them how much fun it is for the couples a to compare notes and bounce ideas off of each other. So - let's dig in and have a good time!!

Just let it play out. What choice do you have? What else can you do? This is not a life threatening situation or even a business breaker. Let it roll.

Oh - and your Jim is a saint!

jennifer22780 Posted 6 Jan 2011 , 9:12pm
post #10 of 18
Originally Posted by karateka

Sigh....My DD confirmed that the hang up/call back incident happened about a week ago. So, therefore, I def have a tasting scheduled that I have no idea what time/how many. Going to tear my shop apart next, looking for something I probably scribbled on like a moron.

Jim says he'd meet whoever got there second out front, tell them that one appt is running late and escort them to the kitchen and let them taste cake.

I just want to smack myself with something hard.

Thank you for letting me vent.

thats a good idea! And lucky Jim is so helpful! ((breathe)) everything works itself out!

karateka Posted 7 Jan 2011 , 1:13pm
post #11 of 18
Originally Posted by tryingcake

Oh - and your Jim is a saint!

He totally is. I'd be totally lost without him.

Thank you guys.....I've no idea how this will turn out. But I've got all my fingers and toes crossed! Wish me luck. I'll let you know what happens.

-K8memphis Posted 7 Jan 2011 , 1:59pm
post #12 of 18

Idea for going forward.

I have tons of ongoing issues brewing especially with vendors that can sometimes last for months/years even, books to order & track, customers to notify when books come in, all kinds of stuff at work.

So I have a 6x8 ish size spiral notebook on the shelf by the phone and I whip it out and 'doodle' on it during the call--and write down dates & names & phone numbers for most all calls (in a perfect world when I remember) --because I never know which ones I'm going to need the history on--for ex.--"I've called three times already on this issue--I talked to so & so on this & that date--how's about we resolve this asap".

I tape other important receipts in there until I can do what's supposed to be done with them, from purchases, from the fax machine. (I've already faxed that on blabla date)

It gives me a place to put all that important information in a tidy little bundle. Some of it I never need again--some of it is invaluable.

And I fold big hunks of used pages down to help me find my current place so I don't flip endlessly through tsunamis of minutiae to find a clean sheet.

A thought for you for going forward.

online_annie Posted 7 Jan 2011 , 2:33pm
post #13 of 18

I use a Cake Binder. It contains notebook paper, serving / pricing guidelines, a monthly calendar I keep updated with clients etc.. I also have a Color Coded Divider w/ pockets for each bride or customer of the month. I write who called from what number at what time. I think we have all experienced clients "not remembering" what we already discussed or agreed on. This makes it very easy to read it back to them. This binder is kept by the phone so all information can be accessed quickly without hesitation. When I leave, I take it with me. Any and all notes are "processed" and filed before the end of the day. I also have everything entered on my laptop, so I have a digital copy. Lucky for me I have 3 teenagers that LOVE data entry. I pay them to keep it up to date daily. Nothing is ever lost or misplaced, all notes and scribbles are then filed in the Month received after the final entry has been updated. I can always go through the months should my computer crash...which is backed up daily or heaven forbid....something dreadful would happen to my binder. I am much more confident with clients and relaxed since I started implementing the binder method. It was overwhelming and time consuming at first, but now there is a relaxed rythm about it. My customers are quite impressed as well when they see it. I think it gives them confidence in me as well. Afterall, they usually have their big binder too! lol

karateka Posted 7 Jan 2011 , 9:19pm
post #14 of 18

I realize I should have written it down centrally. I usuallly write them on the calendar so I can see it daily and be prepared for it. Somehow I was elsewhere when I answered the phone and it didn't get done.

If I can do a reverse phone lookup on the Caller ID numbers in my phone, would you call these people?

I don't remember the name of the person who I'd just have to tell who I am, and ask if they made an appt with me for this weekend...just say that my computer or whatever crashed on me and I'm desperately trying to re-create my appointments? Or should I even bother?

Dayti Posted 7 Jan 2011 , 9:44pm
post #15 of 18

I think if you somehow get their number, I would definitely call - the excuse of the computer is fine. It would definitely put your mind at rest!!

karateka Posted 9 Jan 2011 , 2:07pm
post #16 of 18

I was able to reach about 5 people via the reverse phone number lookup. The other numbers were listed in the database as "invalid number". So far no answers.

Today's the day. Cross your fingers for me that they don't show up at the same time, willya?

neelycharmed Posted 9 Jan 2011 , 2:48pm
post #17 of 18

Hope everything works out for you! thumbs_up.gif
Keep us posted.

karateka Posted 9 Jan 2011 , 7:45pm
post #18 of 18


Where's the extreme relief emoticon???

Thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you !

Now it's just the waiting game, to see if another one shows up later today. Geezl, I could just pass out. I will NEVER take a phone call without writing it in my notebook ever, ever again.

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