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Dear Client, Please Value My Time and Respect My Business. Warning: You’re About to Witness a Full-Scale Rant!

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Disclaimer: As I have said before, the customer is the backbone of any business, and I value all of my customers and their time. BUT, why is it that the 1% spoils it for everyone else? The vast majority of my clients are lovely, considerate and do value my time. However, sometimes I get those customers who are not valuing me back… And for a relationship to work it needs to be reciprocal!

Allow me to blow off some steam and share with you, my fellow lash n’ brow gals and guys, an open letter to all those bad clients out there who disrespect us, and our time.

Dear Client,

I may not be happy about it, but I am going to admit it to you, “I’m not perfect”. I get mad, frustrated, angry, and just plain baffled sometimes. I’m in the business of pleasing people; so let me explain myself to you, so you understand that our relationship is a two-way street.

Dear Client, Why Do I Get Mad?

See, dear client Sometimes you do things that upset me. You are late, or you don’t show up to our scheduled appointments, or sometimes you just plain disrespect my time, business and professionalism. Sorry, do I sound mad?

Dear Client, I Am Fuming When You Are Late

When myself and other salon professionals take on a new client, we have an in-depth consultation. We explain the refill process, we tell our clients how to care for their lashes or brows, and we send them on their way until next time. Everyone leaves happy.

When YOU have a scheduled and confirmed appointment, we rely on YOU to keep us informed if there is a scheduling conflict. When you, the client, stroll in with a big honkin’ Starbucks fifteen minutes late and tilt your head, and say, “sorry”… Well, I just want to blow my stack! Did you not think I would be pacing the floors wondering if you are still coming in? Wondering how could someone be so rude?

Believe it or not, dear client, we worry about your well being too. What if something terrible has happened? I pace around considering what kind of mess I might find your lashes or brows. Will I have enough time to even get the service completed before my next client comes in? And lastly, and really most importantly, where is my big, honkin’ Starbucks? Really folks, if you are going to be late and are stopping off for a “pick-me-up”, you better bring me something too!

Dear Client, Learn How To Pick Up The Phone

Please understand, I know things come up, like traffic, meetings, sick kids, and so on, but could I ask ever so kindly for you to simply communicate? I will let you know that being late is only going to dip into the time I scheduled for you. I don’t ever run into the next client’s appointment.

This tardiness can create a hostility toward the client – “Oh no, did I pull your lash out? Oh, I’m sorry – not sorry!” Now, before you think I’m cruel and heartless, I don’t do this. But as I said, I’m human. I want you to know how I feel when you are late. It’s a little uncomfortable, and hurts just a tiny bit.

The moral of this story, dear client, is that if you want your brows or lashes to look great, be on time!

Dear Client, Don’t No-Show Me – It’s a Jerk Move!

The only thing that boils my blood more than you being late is when you just don’t show up! Oh boy, does this make me upset!

There can’t possibly be anyone out there in the world that doesn’t understand the “no-show”.  We text and email a reminder two days before your appointment – you know that you have absolutely no intention of keeping your appointment. Humor me, please, and tell me why you don’t just cancel the darn appointment?

Frankly, I don’t really need to hear why you aren’t coming back in. If you think I suck, or you don’t have the time or resources that is not my business. I don’t need any excuses, just a simple text, email, or phone call will suffice. Simply state you will not be making the appointment. See, that wasn’t so hard, was it? I even accept smoke signals, or carrier pigeon.

Dear Client, You Are Fired!

Just plain no-showing is never acceptable. You will NEVER be my client ever again. Unless something devastating has happened, or you call me and tell me you left town and forgot to let me know, you will never be my client again! Not even the biggest, freakin’, honkin’ Starbucks will get you back in my good books!

Dear Client, Put Yourself In My Shoes

What YOU may not want to realize is that this salon business is my livelihood. This is how I pay my bills, care for my family, and save for my retirement. Consider this, how would you feel if you showed up to work on pay day and the boss was off that day? Oops, your paycheck arrived and there is a day’s pay missing… I know what you would do, dear bad client, you would raise the roof, demand to be paid, and not stop until you were compensated for your time!

Dear Client, Your Actions Have Repercussions

We salon professionals don’t operate that way. If you are a no-show, we don’t get paid. And the thing is, most times we can’t put another client in that spot because after fifteen minutes passes you finally realize you have been stiffed, and it’s just too late. We take a pay cut, thanks to you not having the decency to cancel.

In the salon, our schedules are like a well-choreographed dance. We have a flow, a rhythm to our day, week, month, and year. When you no-show us, it messes with our self-confidence, we question our skills and the balance in our bank account. So please, just don’t do it!

Dear Client, My Fees Are Not Up For Negotiation

There are other ways you have disrespected me, and I’m going to tell you all about it. As salon professionals we do our very best to do everything by the book. We set up our business, pay the fees and licensing, insurance, rent and operating costs, and then YOU march through the door and question our prices. What’s up with that? I want to come unglued.

I was paying less, but my girl moved, can you lower your price for me?” NO. NO. NO! Please don’t insult my intelligence. Other comments that drive me crazy: “It can’t cost that much in supplies to do these services, why so pricey?” Lady, step back! My time and education is why I charge the fees I do. Hey, just for you, I’m going to jack up the price by $10.00, because you are so “special”.

This one takes the cake: “If I bring my own supplies will you do the service for less?” What do I look like? A charity? A chump? NO. NO. NO! I do not discount. I may on occasion do something above and beyond for you – that is, if you respect me, and my business!

Dear Maryann, Please Remove Your Cranky Pants

There it is. I got all of it out there and off my chest. I’m going to take a deep breath now, take my cranky pants off and put my professional pants back on, and rock my business! I know that all you other professionals out there can relate to these issues. We are professionals, and we will almost always grin and bear it, before we ever go off on a client. Our heads may explode from frustration, but we will continue to smile and push on. But sometimes, we just need to vent… Thanks for being here for me 😉

Come Rant With Me

OK folks, I’m dying to hear about the worst client you ever had. Also, when you do say ‘no’ to a customer, how do you know it’s the right thing to do? As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts, please share with us in the comments section below.

Right, I’m off to Starbucks now.

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Maryann Matykowski

Maryann has an accomplished, 30+ year background in the beauty industry. As a cosmetologist she opened her first salon in ’83. She has specialized as an educator since 2006. Maryann knows what it takes to create successful salon businesses and is here to share her experience with you.

Disclaimer! Opinions expressed on the Glad Lash Blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Glad Lash Inc. Content is provided for informational purposes only and should not be considered professional advice. You should always seek professional advice before making decisions that could affect your business or clients.

11 thoughts on “Dear Client, Please Value My Time and Respect My Business. Warning: You’re About to Witness a Full-Scale Rant!”

  1. Karen Harrington says:

    Hi Maryann,
    I am Australian based, also in the beauty industry as a salon owner and trainer for over 30 years and LOVE LOVE LOVE your article. It certainly hits the spot with those few clients that just don’t get it. I assume they run their whole lives like this and I for one have absolutely no trouble in asking them not to come back. It is great when your business gets to the point where you can afford to “dispose” of these particular clients.
    Karen

    1. Maryann Matykowski says:

      Hi Karen,

      Thank you so much for the Love, Love, Love!

      😉

  2. Christine says:

    Like you, for the most part most of my clients have been great but my 1% was a gal that was constantly calling and canceling or rescheduling at the last minute with a couple of no shows at an average of 1 – 2 x’s per month over the last 10 month’s. She was scheduling almost weekly and making 1/2 of those appointments. When I finally confronted her about it and told her that I would only schedule her for every other week she came up with all kinds of things such as she showed up for appointments that were no longer on the books and was turned away by the receptionist, etc. Liar!! She has gone to see a couple others and keeps coming back to me because I’m the best in the area but I have not seen her now for a couple of weeks so good ridance. What I would like to know is, does anyone out there enforce a cancellation policy? i.e. add a charge on to the next appointment if they cancel in less than 24 hours or no show? I realize most no shows are not coming back anyhow but what about those last minute cancellations that can’t be filled due to time constraints? I do a non refundable dp of $50 on new sets to hold their time slot but I don’t do anything for fills. I would like to be able to enforce at least a $15 cancellation/no show fee. Comments?

    1. Sandy says:

      We have a 100% cancellation/no show policy that we do enforce. The client can cancel up to 24 hours prior to the appointment without a penalty. Within 24 hours, if I can’t fill that space, I do charge 100% of the scheduled appointment. Of course there are always exceptions, and depending on the client, we will waive the penalty. Enforcing the penalty has cut down on our no shows and our estheticians aren’t losing that income.

    2. Maryann Matykowski says:

      Hi Christine! As far as a deposit for no show on maintenance appointments, you should set up a credit card on file for these transactions. I put a disclaimer on my website and my booking platform stating these charges. I have only had to enforce it a few times. When people know they will be charged they will be more likely to follow your policies.

  3. Natalir says:

    This was the most wonderful article! Thank you so much for writing this! I have felt that numerous times in the past 12 years. I have been nice and let clients walk all over me, but I have put my girl panties on and told them no more! I have , or I should say had one client. Ooh she boiled my blood : showing up late canceling 10 mins into apt., calling my child the devil, or the best one she said is “oh your people are such a problem for me” . By my people she was referring to religion. I try to be patient and understanding that we all have issues . But this client was terrible I told her finally after she decided that she was going to try another lash artist again and see what my problem was. Well when she tried crawling back to me I just told her that I will never do her lashes as she was rude disrespectful and down right mean. After that I have got my voice back that I am a person with fillings and I desert respect. Keep up the great work everyone! We all need to raise each other up!

    1. Patrice says:

      Love these stories… I also have had some real winners.a mother/daughter always booked two appts for Facials every signal time were 20 to 40 minutes
      Late I requested them please don’t be late anymore my time is valuable and I
      Don’t work like that…the daughter said what is the problem we’re your last
      Clients…shocked! I said this won’t ever happen again or I will not be able
      To do them.said they were sorry.next month again 30 minutes late…I locked
      My door with a note…saying Sorry please find someone else..I will not be disrespected anymore!!!! They left a note of apology and a check which
      I returned…. Never wanted them back.it felt good to end the disrespect
      It took 4 months to finally do it!! Now, I set polite rules up front ..all has been Good!!!! Love to share this stuff…we need to express! Thank you ladies?

    2. Maryann Matykowski says:

      Hi Natalir,

      I’m so happy you enjoyed my rant. We have all been there. And thanks for sharing.

      🙂

  4. Melanie says:

    I love these stories as well! Thank you for writing! I have been doing lashes for 5 years and an esthetician in many different capacities for 15 in Denver. I have found my lash clients to be a part of this industry the most frustrating. Yes, I have broken up with a few or find they eventually retire. One of my worst experiences is a woman who would sit in her car a smoke a pack of cigarettes before she came into my studio. After she would show up 30 minutes early every appointment, I could no longer
    deal with the odor. Then I think we all have a client who can’t be on time. The other client that comes to mind is a mother & daughter. They would always be 30 minutes late. She would call and come up with reasons and I allowed her to do this 4 times on my calendar. Not only would they be late, I did lashes on both of them back to back while she laid on my bed and talked non stop the entire time and then would talk the entire time I worked on her daughter while she sat in the chair and waited. We would light a candle in our bathroom when we knew she was coming in because she would also like to use it and it was truly awful. At her 5th appointment, Thanksgiving week 2015, she once again showed up 30 minutes late and walked in and I said, “Our lash relationship is over today. I am not making my other clients any longer who come in on time after you late. She turned around and stomped right out the door.

    I think I’ve had almost every situation… a woman who stole her ex husband’s money, a woman who came in intoxicated, a woman who asked me what it actually costs for me to do her lashes, dirty lashes that make me want to vomit all over and of course the ones who tell you they don’t do anything to them when they walk out your door and come in with 5 left.

    In Denver, some of us have contemplated making a list a clients that we don’t want warning other lash artists to not take them.

    I have weeded out the ones I don’t find worthy of my talents, time and certainly don’t want them.

    On a positive note, I find everytime I get rid of a bad apple it opens the door for a good one! I’ve been grateful and just say
    thank you!

    Thank you for writing this! All the best, Melanie

    1. Rickina says:

      Melanie, that last part of your comment is so so so true. When you respect your business and let toxic clients go…more good ones take their spot! Yes!!!

  5. Denise Vermelen says:

    This has nothing to do with the above. I’m having awful retention issues. I follow humidity don’t swipe make sure lash is clea proper application what am I doing wrong

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