Sorry it's been awhile folks, been having some serious non-fun juggling the two jobs and some family drama/illness.
I've been half holding onto this for a bit, waiting to see if it'll be resolved soon. My guess is she'll magically appear tonight since I've given up and written in. Sorry if it's a little long. We'll call this woman Runner.
Runner comes in to get her poster, running number, and sheet with finishing times/placement/etc from the 2012 Boston Marathon. Brave and I talk with her a bit, congratulate her on finishing, and talk options. She wants it as small as possible, but still wants all the items in the frame, but given the size she wants to keep it to, we can't get it all in without covering a large chunk of the design on the main poster.
We spend almost 2 hours going over what the size would be if we just did the poster without the number & placement papers, how small we could get everything if we did have everything in, price differences between the two sizes plus all the regular glass/mat/frame options. We offer to save the options in the computer if she's worried about wall space so she can go home and measure to see what would fit, but she insists she wants to get it ordered today. Finally she decides to have all the items in the same frame, as small as possible, without covering the main design of the poster bust covering some stuff in the corners.
Wonderful! About $400 later, her order is all put in and she leaves. (I will go ahead and mention that the smaller size without the number & placement pages only dropped the price ~$35. Poster was big as heck anyway, and at the time, she was nice, and we liked her, so we didn't charge the extra labor for the fancy stuff we were doing.)
Fast forward about 3 weeks later when she comes to pick up her piece. Because this is on RHU, all you intelligent people can guess that Runner didn't like it. Or more to the point, "You did a wonderful job, but it is just too big."
I call Brave's cell phone, we pow wow for a few, and come up with a game plan for what we're telling her.
"Ok, normally, since this was a custom order, you'd have to pay to have it redone. We're going to redo it for you once for free, but after this, if you want to change it again, we're going to have to charge you. Ok?"
Runner's entire demeanor suddenly changes "But if I'm not happy, you have to fix it. I'm not happy now, and if I'm not happy then you have to make me happy. That's how this works."
In the course of three sentences, she has gone from someone sweet, who I didn't mind, to loathed. "Well, we try to make customers happy, but corporate also can't just keep redoing things for people for free if they change their minds. This was all custom ordered, meaning we can't use it for anyone else, and anything else we order as a replacement will be the same. We didn't do anything wrong with your order; we did what you asked. We're being nice and giving you one free redo, which we aren't supposed to do. I'm just required to warn you we won't be redoing it again for free."
Now Runner is kinda stamping her foot every few words to make a point. "This wasn't what I wanted. When I first came in, I said I wanted it small so you didn't do what I asked and I won't pay for anything. You talked me into that huge thing, it's not what I wanted. You need to calm down, you're getting hostile with me!"
I just raise an eyebrow at her. "Ma'am, I'm not getting hostile, I'm not yelling or stamping my feet. I'm trying to explain to you what we can and can't do, and why, so you understand. I'm not asking you to pay for anything now, I've just said several times we're redoing it for you this time for free, I'm just informing you that beyond that, there won't be any free re-workings. You may have said you wanted it small, but you all wanted all these items in the frame. If I hadn't been part of the team taking the order, you might get away with saying it wasn't what you wanted, but the other girl and myself went through all your size and assembly options several times and even suggested several times you go home and measure the space so you could be sure if it fit or not. Furthermore, you signed on this sheet of paper saying you understood what we were ordering in and doing for you and that you agreed to it. So, you can either work with me to decide on something smaller for your one freebie, or you can sign that you picked it up and leave unhappy."
She decided to work with me. We then went back and forth for another hour about how wide her new mat would be. She wanted it a 3/4ths of an inch. I warned her that a mat smaller than the frame can be visually distracting. (It generally looks like you were trying to force something. The other complaint I've heard is that people end up staring at the mat trying to figure out why their brain is telling them something is wrong instead of looking at whatever is in the frame.)
Runner whines, "But if I make the mat as wide as the frame, I'm only taking off 4 inches of the total size!"
"If you put it where you want it, you're only taking off 5 inches of the total size. It's an inch difference overall. Really, we'll stick to the re-doing this for free once. We'll hold it for you if you want to go home and actually measure the space you want to put it in. We'll put the re-order in when you come back." Again, she wants to get it done today. She makes a decision, I have her sign off on the paperwork, in which I have also noted she understands we're only doing this once.
Four days pass. I get a call from the new kid in the frame shop (who is looking like he'll last longer than 2 months, but that's another story). "You remember Runner? She called today. She wanted to cancel the re-order and just pick stuff up as it was. I know she was your customer and how frustrating she's been, so I didn't want to say anything until I checked with you."
After all that, she's willing to just take it? Now that we can't cancel the order anymore, the company is out the money, which we will get blamed for? "Don't worry kid, I'll call her when I get in."
Oh boy, did I. I told her if she just wanted to take it, she was more than welcome to come by and pick it up- it was hers. However, if she then got it home, changed her mind again and did want it smaller, her free re-do was already used because it was too late to cancel the new order we had put in and she would be paying for any changes. Alternately, when the new frame and mat came it, we could put the frame together so she could see how big it was compared to the old one, but for the time being leave the poster and everything in the current frame if she decided she'd like to keep the original.
The other caveat to this was that whatever she decided on the phone with me would be final and any other phone calls about changing her mind again would be ignored. We'd given her the opportunity to put off the decision until she had all the facts from her home in both instances, which she hadn't wanted to do, so we were putting our foot down at this point that she either took everything or waited for the new stuff to get in, period. She complained that this would count as her free re-do, but finally decided to wait for the new frame.
So, her new frame came in a few days ago, we're just waiting for her to come look at them. I can't wait to get this woman out of our hair.
May all your custies be decisive.