Author Topic: SOLVED! You can delete....  (Read 816 times)

tag

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SOLVED! You can delete....
« on: January 10, 2018, 04:33:57 PM »
Hi all!

Thanks to advice and support from many of you I recently started my own business! I am a Professional Organizer/Home and Family Consultant....I help people organize their living and working spaces, their time and their lives so that they reflect their highest priorities and deepest desires. I'm focusing on home organizing, retirement downsizing and minimizing (the closest to my heart :). I am absolutely loving it so far and I know I've hit gold because I would do it for free. We are FIRE so this isn't about the money for me. But I'm finally filling a void that I have had for 7 years - since leaving the work force to homeschool my 4 kiddos.

ANYWAY, I'm learning that I need to protect my time. I'm putting a cancellation policy in place and want to run it by anyone who will read it. I don't want to make it harder for people to do business with me, and I don't want to "punish" people for canceling due to circumstances beyond their control or even just for changing their mind actually. The main thing is, I still have to book a babysitter in order for me to go out, and I pay her well and have to schedule her in advance. So I'd like to as much as possible minimize cancellations.

This is what I'm thinking....

1) Initial phone or internet communication (brief).

2) In-home consult, 30-60 minutes. Charge my hourly rate for this but if the appointment converts to payed business, this hour is waved. At this time, take payment for a 3 hour working session (my minimum) and schedule it.

3) If the client has to reschedule at any time, no problem. The 3 hours can be used at any time or even gifted to someone else. If the client wants to cancel, I offer 1/2 refund. (Or no refund? Or all? Or a completely different process?)

Of course I had a situation that caused me to think all this through. I had a consult with a client, I did some shopping for her for some very specific supplies to be used during my first session, she had to reschedule (not sure if/when it will happen). And I still have the product. I got it off Amazon and have to pay to return it or else it would be no problem. If she reschedules it will be no problem. If she doesn't, I have product I can't use or return.

Any thoughts for me?
« Last Edit: January 10, 2018, 05:31:48 PM by tag »

Gin1984

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Re: brand new small biz - review my cancellation policy
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2018, 04:39:34 PM »
I would never use your service if I saw this policy.  I pay after the service is complete.

tag

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Re: brand new small biz - review my cancellation policy
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2018, 04:43:03 PM »
Actually, most professional organizers sell packages and they are paid in advance. I'm not kidding! It surprised me too!
« Last Edit: January 10, 2018, 04:47:14 PM by tag »

tag

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Re: brand new small biz - review my cancellation policy
« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2018, 04:48:45 PM »
I should have added also, I guarantee my work. If someone isn't satisfied, I'm going to offer a refund.

SC93

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Re: SOLVED! You can delete....
« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2018, 06:27:58 PM »
As for a refund.... I've never offered a refund in any business I've ever owned. I would advise against it.

As for your policy... I think the initial consultation..... I would think that would be FREE but if they schedule you to come in, then you would need to receive payment in full with no refund.

That's the way I would do it, having dealt with the public for so many years in their own house.

I can see paying ahead of time for a service like this but I can't see paying for you to come over the first time meet & greet so-to-say.

Now I'm a guy and let me tell you why I got so many bids that females didn't get and for a higher price. I always took off my shoes at the front door.... even if they said I didn't have to. I always made friends with the kids and the dog. I'm not a dog lover or a kid lover but that was my roll, so I played it. I looked them in the eye. I always had control of the conversation. You go in there and know what you want to say, you lead the conversation. Don't let them take over.

Here is what I mean..... I'd walk in and before they had a chance to say anything I'd say, "If you want to show me around that would be great!". And then make small talk to the first room. And then you lead the conversation from there. Ask questions or lead with a statement.... what ever, as long as you lead. That shows them you know what you are doing. If you are uhuh and aaahhhhh..... you must stop that.

And have your rates written down. I always found writing down $250 was much easier than looking them in the eye and saying it.




GizmoTX

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Re: SOLVED! You can delete....
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2018, 09:34:31 AM »
We interviewed a dog trainer when our puppy was 5 months old. The trainer came out to our house, met us, explained what she covers, & got our input on what we wanted out of the training. We could see how well she interacted with our dog & managed to get some immediate & impressive results. We knew from the initial phone call that her service is a package of 8 weekly sessions at our home, so that we all could be trained. Her initial visit was free, but we paid in full to continue with her package.

You should do something similar. Provide the initial consult for free, so that you both know you're a good fit, but charge to do any further scheduling, preferably in full but at least a deposit, including any supplies. You may need to provide a detailed proposal, which will then become the work agreement. Collect the remainder as you deliver. Except for the initial sales call, you never want to leave without getting paid for your time, as you cannot reclaim it. Put a calendar limit on schedule changes.