I have to get this off my chest, because I feel bad but don't think it's my fault. Or is it?
An acquaintance of mine; really sweet young woman and former teacher of my kid, asked me 1.5 yrs ago to make her wedding cake. After that, they planned, then canceled plans and decided on a destination wedding, and finally booked everything here locally once more. All through this, I've kept up with the changes and promised I'd do her cake again. She booked a date and we changed the original contract somewhat to scale down the cake size. Everything else stayed the same at the time. She would communicate with me through Fb messages, not my work email, so we've gone back and forth several times on Fb.
Her wedding was last Friday night, and I baked the flavors Thursday night according to the contract. Then when looking through our Fb posts to confirm something else, I came across an exchange where she asked me change the flavors of the wedding cake. I had a slight moment of panic and kicked myself for forgetting to note the change on my contract copy, then baked up new layers for the new flavor. I finished the cake on Friday and delivered to the venue.
Got an email this morning, which was written in a nice tone, but she said they hadn't ordered chocolate cake and had expected a vanilla tier and a Red Velvet tier and had those flavors printed on their menus. She said it confused the staff and guests when chocolate cake was served. She wasn't p'd off in her email and told me that the cake was beautiful, but obviously she felt compelled to write.
When I got the email, I panicked again and reviewed everything I had about their order. She did ask me for a flavor change but I guess she hadn't remembered that. I nicely wrote her back and apologized for the confusion but explained where I found that wires had crossed (for lack of a better term). I haven't heard back from her and I really do feel bad. If I hadn't located the Fb messages, I would have dlvrd the "wrong" cake (wht/rv), and it would have been the "right" one in her mind, I guess.
Thanks for letting me vent.
Using her Facebook message, I'd reply to her that I'm very sorry about the confusion and that she was disappointed. I'd explain that this was the message that you reacted to and that you do wish that you'd called to confirm the change that she requested.
This way, you're apologizing, not blaming... yet it does make it clear that there was a very legitimate reason (initiated by her!) for your change.
These things happen. Put the facts on the table, and then let it go. She got her beautiful cake, and I'm sure it was absolutely delicious, too! You did your very best, plus some, to meet her expectations.
What a shame when you put in all that extra work on her cake, not to mention the expense of the extra layers. But she DID change her mind, as you pointed out. I guess it's always a good plan to confirm the details of an order just before baking (or maybe shopping for the ingredients!), but this isn't something I've ever found it necessary to do. Maybe I'll start now! But in the end, this is all HER fault, not yours. I just hope she realizes that. And now that you've had a chance to vent, I hope you won't keep beating yourself up about it. We are a masochistic bunch, aren't we? I'd be feeling the same way.
Ugh that's a messy situation. If it were me, in the future if someone requests a change on FB tell them you'll need to have them initial that change on a revised contract.
That's the only way to cover yourself.
Hopefully she'll have an "aha" moment when she reads about her FB message requesting the change.
I would DEFINITELY let her know, in the nicest way possible, that you did what she asked you to! Copy and paste or take a screen shot of the message she sent you with the flavor change and send it to her. She sounds like a scatter brain, anyways! Poor you, and poor her!
Well, here's an update. Or shall I say lack of an update.
I did email her, as I'd mentioned earlier. Heard...crickets. Nothing. Nada. Which is weird for the convo to stop short like that. I figured she'd come back and say "Oh my gosh, I forgot about that." Or, "Alright, but I just wished you'd checked in with me to confirm because we'd put it on the menu." Or something. Crickets. And you all know the muddy water that happens when a client is not a stranger, but a friendly acquaintance or someone with ties to your family. She's my daughter former preschool teacher, and often babysat my kids up until a year or so ago. And we're obviously Fb friends. Haven't heard a peep from her since the email.
Oh well. :-/ C'est la vie!
You're hearing crickets because she knows that you're right and she's embarrassed that she made the mistake!
I would have printed out the facebook convo and highlighted where she changed the flavors...and said you were going by your facebook exchange.
facebook messages are like post it notes and I never did business via post it notes.
As a suggestion for the future, I always confirmed everything via official email (the idea of trying to track down an old FB message just makes me cringe!) AND a revised contract/order form showing the changes,
As I told my brides, "This is the piece of paper I'm looking at when I make your cake. Not emails, not phone messages, this form right here. So if it's not on this form, it's not happening."
As always, the goddess has spoken! Ignore her at your peril - she's always right. Thanks, Indydebi!
Drat - this is happening a lot lately: I submit my post, my computer says the internet has failed for the moment. If I don't submit the message again, it doesn't post. If I do submit it, it posts however many times it took to get the right response (the "Information" screen). And I don't know how to delete messages once they´re posted. Sorry for the bother, you guys!