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Clients. Can't live with them can't live without them...

Old 01-11-2019, 04:39 PM
  #21  
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Originally Posted by mymojo View Post
Yeah, the missus is pissed cause I returned the check, but I have to tell you it felt good to me.
The high road is never the wrong road.

People tend to be very unrealistic... the words "I want" don't guarantee any success.
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Old 01-11-2019, 05:37 PM
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I love my profession but the people factor like you describe is why I very much look forward to semiretirement.
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Old 01-11-2019, 05:57 PM
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You are feeling bad while having done nothing wrong. Do not feel bad about someone else's mistakes. I would've (and have) deposited the check. I bet if he tells his side of the story to any reasonable person they will call him out on being the dick.
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Old 01-11-2019, 06:15 PM
  #24  
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Originally Posted by Elusive View Post
Zero upside to doing business with friends and family. Avoid if at all possible. If unavoidable, consider it pro-bono
This ^^^. there will be no winners...
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Old 01-11-2019, 06:22 PM
  #25  
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Rule #1. Never do business with friends.
Rule#2. Never do business with family.
Rule#3. See #1 & #2.
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Old 01-11-2019, 06:53 PM
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I am an account lead delivering business outsourcing services. I often struggle feeling as co-workers with the client and then be treated as a vendor. It sucks, but job pays more than most. I have to remember the client allows me to have the house, bbq, boat, family, and give back to those less fortunate. It is really hard sometimes. Buffalo Trace at the end of the week helps.
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Old 01-11-2019, 07:19 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by mymojo View Post
Yeah, the missus is pissed cause I returned the check, but I have to tell you it felt good to me.
That kind of reminds me of that quote that I used to see on here, "If you loan a friend 20.00 and never see him again. That was 20.00 well spent."
mymojo, I would have sent it back also. Along with something like "keep this, it's one of many things you need worse than I do."
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Old 01-11-2019, 07:22 PM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by fbsaltfly View Post
I am an account lead delivering business outsourcing services. I often struggle feeling as co-workers with the client and then be treated as a vendor. It sucks, but job pays more than most. I have to remember the client allows me to have the house, bbq, boat, family, and give back to those less fortunate. It is really hard sometimes. Buffalo Trace at the end of the week helps.
braggaaet
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Old 01-11-2019, 08:09 PM
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Originally Posted by DotRotten View Post
braggaaet
​​​On a Friday night after a long week with clients and more than 1 buffalo trace, the post helps me for remember how lucky I am. Am a bragging, no. I can only afford a 22' center console which is more than most, but not on this site.
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Old 01-12-2019, 02:39 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by dsharp View Post
No good deed goes unpunished. Repeat in the mirror daily.
Last time I heard that was when someone was working on my boat. Guy thought he was doing me a favor by damn near destroying my boat. They let the hull fill up to the deck with water and came very close to destroying my engine. Fortunately, I went and got it to take to another shop that knew what they were doing.
2 days later it got down into the teens and if that water had froze, ...............
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Old 01-12-2019, 03:40 AM
  #31  
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There is a lot of pleasure to be derived from accomplishing a challenging project while solving all the problems that present themselves. I have determined though that most people are going to convince themselves that they got screwed somehow no matter how well their project turned out.
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Old 01-12-2019, 04:07 AM
  #32  
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Feel your pain bro, being in bookkeeping and Income tax bus I run into this from time to time.

One thing you will never hear me ask a Friend is about doing their work, they know what I do and I never ever talk work and honestly I understand some folks just do not want others knowing all their business . (It all runs together and I have grown up seeing stuff like this so I NEVER think anything of it )

Have quite a few I charge a very minimal rate and some I never charge a penny but that is my choice.

The ones that kind of piss me off are the “do it yourselfers “ that have no clue what they are doing and call or even drop in to “ask a quick question “ but I just take it with grain of salt and move on .

Did have one of those last year that I really do not know, guy came in and I did his return and quite honestly he had it correct but was unsure of it. Charged him my min fee of $100. He was some what abrupt with me and told his wife “I wasted my money “. I finally responded that YOU CALLED ME and took up over an hour and half of my time (phones ringing off the hook, clients waiting to see me, my “to do boxes overflowing with work” . He walked out pissed had threw check at my receptionist when he left. (His MIL is a great client of mine).

He came back by my office the next day and gave me a huge apology and was embarrassed at his actions and even gave my receptionist a gift card .

I think you did the right thing, I have clients that DO NOT WANT TO HEAR what I am telling them, can not make their issues go away but we can TRY is all I can say. Lot of folks out there just think there is a way to “beat the system “
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Old 01-12-2019, 04:44 AM
  #33  
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I am always amazed that so many people from varied backgrounds and completely different professions say the exact same thing to me:
"I love the work I do, it's the people I hate dealing with."
Sad commentary on people. Its usually a small per cent age that leaves such a bad taste.

OP, I am self employed hvac contractor and I dont take it lightly but have fired a few clients over the last 30 years. Good for you.

One guy would call us in for emergency service in his commercial buildings. After we got his heat or ac working we would send an invoice. He would then Give himself a discount saying we all need to do our part, times are tough. He would show up at buildings in his S class Mercedes. I told him after he paid me in full on ALL the past invoices, he should find another contractor. He did.
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Old 01-12-2019, 05:01 AM
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Originally Posted by mymojo View Post
.Been in private architectural practice for over 25 years and have had my good days and bad - mostly good but today was a frustrating day. Working on a small residential project that required a State variance on a flood plane issue to get a building permit. They are rarely granted and I told the client ( a kind of friend who I've known for years) that from the beginning repeatedly. I had gotten one for a project 3 years ago but told him I was shocked we prevailed and it was no guarantee for success on his project. Well we got denied in September. I sent a bill for my time for the preparation and presentation at the hearing - a total of 6 hours - 3 of which where driving to Boston for the hearing. After 3 months of not getting paid I sent him a friendly hand-written note asking if he overlooked the bill. I got a check today along with a nasty letter about how I disappointed him in failing to get the variance.... I picked up the phone and called him to discuss, I did not lose my temper and we hung up after some discussion. Upon more thinking about how I had done nothing wrong I wrote him a letter stating my case and re-iterating that I never guaranteed success in getting the variance in fact the opposite and that these cases all take time. Time that is billable success or no and that I billed very reasonably for my time. I included his check in the letter and dropped it in the mail... I hate most people. Rant over.
Being a licensed GC, I've dealt with similiar situations. You absolutely took the high road here and are the better man.
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Old 01-12-2019, 05:28 AM
  #35  
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Never walked in those shoes. Always worked for large Corps or the Government. I would be a horrible self employed businessman.

But from what I hear from my friends you are not alone. Your last sentence is all you need to do here . "Rant over."You did good. Let it go.
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Old 01-12-2019, 06:05 AM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by DotRotten View Post
No sympathy here. As a builder I get multiple sets of plans a year for me to bid on. A single bid can take anywhere from forty to over a hundred hours. I don't get to bill for that but if I call an architect, engineer or a lawyer for some quick advice it's on the clock. Sometimes it's better to fire the client.
False equivalency. I'm a civil engineer I never get paid for job pursuits either. My company spends millions every year responding to RFPs ad RFQs with no guarantee of getting any work (equivalent). My Seal, Expertise and Computer are my "tools". If I use these on your behalf (incurring professional liability) I expect to be paid...…….what if I called you up and asked you for some quick help (using your tools)...….I only want to drive three hours and bring your bucket truck so I can take a quick look at some bridge beam bearings to prepare a RFP for repairing/redesigning them...…….would you expect to get paid??????

Last edited by xl883lo; 01-12-2019 at 06:15 AM.
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Old 01-12-2019, 06:07 AM
  #37  
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I think about 99 in 100 people you come across in business will be generally honest and reasonable. About 1 in a 100 will be whacko. 1 in a 1,000 major whacko. I find it helps to be ultra transparent up front or those numbers change a bit. But I think you were very transparent and handled it great.

For me when something like this happens the next step is to compartmentalize it in my mind and shelve it. No longer worth thinking about.
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Old 01-12-2019, 06:12 AM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by mymojo View Post
.Been in private architectural practice for over 25 years and have had my good days and bad - mostly good but today was a frustrating day. Working on a small residential project that required a State variance on a flood plane issue to get a building permit. They are rarely granted and I told the client ( a kind of friend who I've known for years) that from the beginning repeatedly. I had gotten one for a project 3 years ago but told him I was shocked we prevailed and it was no guarantee for success on his project. Well we got denied in September. I sent a bill for my time for the preparation and presentation at the hearing - a total of 6 hours - 3 of which where driving to Boston for the hearing. After 3 months of not getting paid I sent him a friendly hand-written note asking if he overlooked the bill. I got a check today along with a nasty letter about how I disappointed him in failing to get the variance.... I picked up the phone and called him to discuss, I did not lose my temper and we hung up after some discussion. Upon more thinking about how I had done nothing wrong I wrote him a letter stating my case and re-iterating that I never guaranteed success in getting the variance in fact the opposite and that these cases all take time. Time that is billable success or no and that I billed very reasonably for my time. I included his check in the letter and dropped it in the mail... I hate most people. Rant over.
I would have kept the check unless this guy is one of my bigger clients and stood by your original discussion.
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Old 01-12-2019, 06:32 AM
  #39  
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Thanks all - I'm working on the 'forget about it part' now! I've been fortunate in that the vast majority of my clients are great folks and as I told this one
I can count on 1 hand literally the clients with whom I parted company with on a bad note. It's ironic because on the drive to the hearing I talked with him at length how much more of my time is spent these days dealing with code issues versus actual architecture and that the wrangling on code stuff was my least favorite thing to do. Oh well, no regrets about sending him his check back.
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Old 01-12-2019, 08:42 AM
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My first construction job was with a major publicly traded nation-wide home builder. I was green as hell and kinda fumble-fucking my way around for the first few months before I got the hang of it. So in one neighborhood I had two builds going up right next door to each other, one a month or so ahead of the other. Both were built to order for specific clients. Client A's home was the one that started first and a little further ahead. Client A was awesome and we got along great, no major snafu's during the entire build. Client B was a major c**t and there were a few issues with their build, some their fault with change orders and some mine. It all came to a head with Client B when we had a meeting with my area manager over their issues. Client B was bitching about this that and the other and concluded her tirade by accusing me of being racist and treating Client A better. I'm white. Client A was a black army veteran married to a gorgeous white lady. Client B is hispanic. After all of that my area manager says something to the effect of "Well Client B it sounds like we aren't the builder for you. Please see the sales associate on your way out of the neighborhood to get your deposit back." I just about shit myself trying not to laugh in that bitches face as she came completely unhinged.
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