Fell For It - Venting

Decorating By howsweet Updated 5 May 2014 , 9:10pm by Claire138

howsweet Posted 26 Apr 2014 , 5:09pm
post #1 of 18

ACustomer is late to pick up... I call, she says Gps says 10 min. I'm like ok, if it's just 10 min I can wait. 20 min later.... I call. Oh sorry I'm here now getting off at the exit. (my driver is meeting her right by the freeway). 12 minutes later she rolls in.

She had to be lying to me the whole time and now the next cake delivery is 30 minutes late. In total she was about 55 minutes late. If she'd told me she was going to be that late, I'd have rescheduled her. Well played, inconsiderate person.

17 replies
howsweet Posted 26 Apr 2014 , 5:14pm
post #2 of 18

AIt doesn't take even take 2 minutes to turn into the parking lot after exiting. That's how I know she was lying.

-K8memphis Posted 26 Apr 2014 , 5:28pm
post #3 of 18

ouch--sorry that happened--glad it's behind you at least--wow not cool of her ---

retroactive pia upcharge on her next order :grin:

 

xo

howsweet Posted 26 Apr 2014 , 5:35pm
post #4 of 18

AHaha. It drives me crazy that I was tricked and outsmarted. She was foreign and I suppose maybe she's from some place where 11 am means noon and the way she handled it was normal. Driver said she had never seen clothes like what they had on.

georgiacakelady Posted 26 Apr 2014 , 5:44pm
post #5 of 18

AHey, at least she came. I've had people tell me they're on their way and never show up. That was before I started taking deposits. But even now, I'll still have people show up 4 hrs late!

howsweet Posted 26 Apr 2014 , 5:52pm
post #6 of 18

AFour hours? Holy cow.

georgiacakelady Posted 26 Apr 2014 , 6:15pm
post #7 of 18

AYep, some people are just very inconsiderate unfortunately.

ugcjill Posted 27 Apr 2014 , 12:09am
post #8 of 18

AUgh. That stinks. It's one of many reasons I only deliver.

Norasmom Posted 27 Apr 2014 , 1:12am
post #9 of 18

You could take a medical approach to this.  We had a 9:30 am appointment at our Children's Hospital to see a specialist who books out months in advance.  He's one of the best, so when my husband and I found ourselves stuck in traffic I freaked out..it was taking 2 hours for a normally 45 minute drive (and we left super early).  Soooo…I called to tell them we would be late and the receptionist said "Okay…I will tell the doctor and if he wants you to re-book I will call you back…"  Fortunately he was able to see us.  It was up to me to us to be on time though.  A professional's time (cake decorators!) is precious.

 

Too bad you can't "re-book" a cake because you have other orders!  As in, if you aren't here in 20 minutes I will have to put your cake in the fridge and you can get it later…

Apti Posted 27 Apr 2014 , 2:07am
post #10 of 18

Quote:

Originally Posted by howsweet 

Customer is late to pick up... I call, she says Gps says 10 min. I'm like ok, if it's just 10 min I can wait. 20 min later.... I call. Oh sorry I'm here now getting off at the exit. (my driver is meeting her right by the freeway). 12 minutes later she rolls in.

She had to be lying to me the whole time and now the next cake delivery is 30 minutes late.
In total she was about 55 minutes late. If she'd told me she was going to be that late, I'd have rescheduled her. Well played, inconsiderate person.

Sorry that happened to you.  For 30 years I lived by the clock.  I was in medical equipment sales and was required to be on time--EVERY time, no matter what.  The way I survived was to leave a "cushion" of time before and between every single appointment.  I used the down time to do paperwork.

 

I know this doesn't apply  to cake deliveries/meetings, but with a laptop and cel phone, you may be able to leave a cushion for inconsiderate customers (or some that are truly lost) and still do some of your calling/scheduling, cake design, ordering, etc. while waiting.

 

The only other alternative I can see would be to tell a customer BEFORE a specific meeting time, that if they are 20 minutes late, the meeting or delivery will be rescheduled.  Again, I have no idea if this approach would work in the real world of cake customers who are paying for custom cakes.

howsweet Posted 27 Apr 2014 , 4:03am
post #11 of 18

A

Original message sent by Norasmom

You could take a medical approach to this.  We had a 9:30 am appointment at our Children's Hospital to see a specialist who books out months in advance.  He's one of the best, so when my husband and I found ourselves stuck in traffic I freaked out..it was taking 2 hours for a normally 45 minute drive (and we left super early).  Soooo…I called to tell them we would be late and the receptionist said "Okay…I will tell the doctor and if he wants you to re-book I will call you back…"  Fortunately he was able to see us.  It was up to me to us to be on time though.  A professional's time (cake decorators!) is precious.

Too bad you can't "re-book" a cake because you have other orders!  As in, if you aren't here in 20 minutes I will have to put your cake in the fridge and you can get it later…

Thanks, hope your little one is doing well.

That's exactly what I would have told her if she'd let me know she hadn't even left the house yet, which I think was the case. Or she could have met the driver where the other cake was going.

I've had other customers with traffic issues, etc and they don't repeatedly give inaccurate info about what's really happening. That was the real problem. There were actually 3 phone calls, where this person did this and I simplified it to two in my original post. The more I think back on the conversations, her intent was to keep me on a string rather than deal with me honestly and fairly. On the first call, she wouldn't tell me where she was on the road (probably because she was in her house) and on the second one she would only say the number of the exit, like exit 30 - she wouldn't give me a street name. And on the last one she claimed to be getting off at the final exit. She wasn't even driving - her husband was, so this wasn't so hard, right?

Original message sent by Apti

Sorry that happened to you.  For 30 years I lived by the clock.  I was in medical equipment sales and was required to be on time--EVERY time, no matter what.  The way I survived was to leave a "cushion" of time before and between every single appointment.  I used the down time to do paperwork.

I know this doesn't apply  to cake deliveries/meetings, but with a laptop and cel phone, you [I]may[/I] be able to leave a cushion for inconsiderate customers (or some that are truly lost) and still do some of your calling/scheduling, cake design, ordering, etc. while waiting.

The only other alternative I can see would be to tell a customer BEFORE a specific meeting time, that if they are 20 minutes late, the meeting or delivery will be rescheduled.  Again, I have [I]no idea[/I] if this approach would work in the real world of cake customers who are paying for custom cakes.

Thanks, I have sometimes said that when the schedule is tight and should have in this case. But the other delivery would have been ok even if she'd just been 30 minutes late. Only one other time have I had someone like 45 min late.I wouldn't have waited for her if she hadn't strung me along.

I did call the delivery driver to tell her to go onto next delivery and they drove up right then.

My bad - lesson learned.

celiazumbach Posted 27 Apr 2014 , 8:46pm
post #12 of 18

AI hear you Howsweet. I am a retired florist and learned a lesson a long time ago to have no pick ups just deliveries. I now apply that to when I do cakes. Pickups are a risk not only are people on their own time they seem to think you are in their time as well........WELL we are working to a schedule.......also as the cake decorator you know how to respect a cake when transporting, non cake decorators have no idea. Like Apti we have a cushin to counteract any possible delays. Delivery does add extra cost unless you say free delivery and add that into the price of the cake. I do cakes from home, not many but I don't want people coming to the house so I insist on delivery.

howsweet Posted 5 May 2014 , 6:16pm
post #13 of 18

Update:

 

Background:  this customer had placed 3 small orders, each to be picked up separately within 8 days of each other.

 

For the second one, they were 45 minutes late. *sigh*

 

For the last one, after 45 minutes, I started calling--no answer and the phone is going straight to voicemail. So, I call one more time and leave a voice mail saying, thanks for payment,  I've run your card, but am wondering if you still want the cake?  I'm assuming you don't since you didn't come to get it. Will probably donate it to some sick children, do you have any preferences? I'm going to make some calls and see who will accept it and get back to you. Immediately I get a call saying they are on their way. How long will it be? 45 min. They hadn't even left their house yet.

 

By this time, it was so bizarre I wasn't even mad any more. I don't think I'm going to change the way I handle pick ups. Never had anything like these people before and I'm guessing I won't again. Knock on wood. 

MBalaska Posted 5 May 2014 , 7:09pm
post #14 of 18

Howsweet,  what you have experienced with this one 'turkey' explains why there are so many varied and opposing answers on threads about a topic such as this.  Some people have had not even a hint of unpleasantness, others have had enough to turn their original methods upside-down to protect themselves.

 

I like reading about so many different methods (policies or practices) of doing the same thing.  It lets me choose which one of them fits my circumstances.  If things change and get better or worse for me, I can revisit the options and try another method.  The arguments about who is correct is more about what is correct for my situation. IMO

craftybanana Posted 5 May 2014 , 7:22pm
post #15 of 18

If she was truly relying on the GPS, then I can understand her being late. We had a GPS with a rental car one time and it took us into someone's driveway instead of to a fast food place. Even Google Maps will send us to the wrong place if we don't check the street view. But if that was the case, she should've checked with you on the best way to get to the meeting place. But late three times? Wow.

howsweet Posted 5 May 2014 , 7:27pm
post #16 of 18

Alaska, my situation is that I mostly sell high end celebration cakes to normal people with enough sense to order at least 3-4 weeks in advance.. But I've been trying to make some extra money and for the last few weeks, I've been accepting last minute orders that I would normally turn away.

 

Now that I think of it, these customers might need different handling. I had another one who was d-e-s-p-e-r-a-t-e. I actually felt sorry for her. She just didn't know if she could afford the cake and sounded so despondent on the phone that with less than 8 days to go, i told her to sleep on and and let me know the next day and I would just shred her card info if she decided not to go with it.

 

When she shows up to pick up her cake, she is in a brand new Mercedes full of bags from stores I never even consider entering. A huge $1500 Gucci bag is peaking out of one them and she looks at this gorgeous cake, and i do mean gorgeous, and says, "it needs another bow. I really only ordered with you because I like the way you do bows".

 

I haven't been treated this way by customers since my very first 5-6 cakes when i was undercharging.

-K8memphis Posted 5 May 2014 , 7:58pm
post #17 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by howsweet 
 

... and says, "it needs another bow. I really only ordered with you because I like the way you do bows".

 

 

 

 

ughuh, my hands and arms weaken when i get sh*t on--hate the way those cakes flip right over outa my fingertips and i hear that satisfying splat on the ground--ruh roh-- 

 

:grin:

 

'course that's no way to make money but that's one way to salve your soul-- ugh! fun/cathartic to daydream anyhow

Claire138 Posted 5 May 2014 , 9:10pm
post #18 of 18

Quote:

Originally Posted by howsweet 
 

Alaska, my situation is that I mostly sell high end celebration cakes to normal people with enough sense to order at least 3-4 weeks in advance.. But I've been trying to make some extra money and for the last few weeks, I've been accepting last minute orders that I would normally turn away.

 

Now that I think of it, these customers might need different handling. I had another one who was d-e-s-p-e-r-a-t-e. I actually felt sorry for her. She just didn't know if she could afford the cake and sounded so despondent on the phone that with less than 8 days to go, i told her to sleep on and and let me know the next day and I would just shred her card info if she decided not to go with it.

 

When she shows up to pick up her cake, she is in a brand new Mercedes full of bags from stores I never even consider entering. A huge $1500 Gucci bag is peaking out of one them and she looks at this gorgeous cake, and i do mean gorgeous, and says, "it needs another bow. I really only ordered with you because I like the way you do bows".

 

I haven't been treated this way by customers since my very first 5-6 cakes when i was undercharging.

 

I had the exact same experience. Really taught me a lesson & she complained about it too.

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