Dealing with impatient customers

Lazerrus

I LUV CURLY MAPLE!!!!!
Gold Member
Silver Member
This is aimed at the cue makers out there. I am not one but do perform services to customers in a different field. I am curious as to how you handle difficult impatient customers. You know the ones. When is my cue going to be done? Can I get more pics of the build? I want to change something.....again. You said my cue would be ready by now? Can I get an update again this week? Etc. As a customer of custom cues I believe in the practice of placing an order for a cue I want and then letting the builder do their thing only approaching them at the time of completion and take any offerings of photos etc as a bonus, not a demand. I understand that customers can be all different but I am sure there are some that just go over the top with impatience. How do you handle them?
 

dunkelcustomcue

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I am only a part time cue maker. I let the customer know that my family and regular job come first. I never promise a completion date, because I don't want to miss a date that I promised. I don't take a down payment and I give the customer 30 days to return the cue for either a full refund or another cue. I've only had 1 person in 7 years that I canceled an order on and that was because he called me every week to check on the progress of the cue and try to nail me down on when it was going to be done. Cue building is a hobby for me. If you take the fun out of it for me then I don't want to deal with you.
 

scdiveteam

Rick Geschrey
Silver Member
Hi,

I don't take upfront money unless the design or specs. are something that I don't think will sell to someone else. I would rather sell a finished cue to someone who can inspect and play with rather than spec a cue.

I tell them about one month but also explain to them that cue making has a schedule that can sometimes be unpredictable. It is also good to tell them that you need several weeks to take light passes on the wood.

After a week or two when they start calling I remind them if they want me to rush it, it will be bad for the cue. When they figure out that there was no downpayment and you are concerned with quality they will leave you alone.

Once you get their money in your hand they will hound you.

Rick G
 

aphelps1

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
For the few that hound me, I tell them that I have two speeds. If they don't like the present one, they're gonna hate the second one.

Alan
 

manwon

"WARLOCK 1"
Silver Member
This is aimed at the cue makers out there. I am not one but do perform services to customers in a different field. I am curious as to how you handle difficult impatient customers. You know the ones. When is my cue going to be done? Can I get more pics of the build? I want to change something.....again. You said my cue would be ready by now? Can I get an update again this week? Etc. As a customer of custom cues I believe in the practice of placing an order for a cue I want and then letting the builder do their thing only approaching them at the time of completion and take any offerings of photos etc as a bonus, not a demand. I understand that customers can be all different but I am sure there are some that just go over the top with impatience. How do you handle them?


I don't think there is a such thing as an impatient customer, I think in most cases inpatients is confused with poor communication. In my opinion customers are just like us, they want to be kept informed, they want to know the details of the transaction, and they must be kept updated with current information on the project good or bad. In my opinion if I do my job and keep my customers informed and up to date on the progress of their cue there is no impatience even those few times that the project has had to go past it's scheduled completion times frame.

JIMO
 
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cueman

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
I just get on the phone and give the best guess as to when I expect it to be done. I told a customer that has a cue on order now that we cuemakers are notorious for being overly optimistic about a complettion date. I am over a month past the original estimate now. He calls about once a week and asks how it is going. That is no problem. I think I might get it done within a week now. I got $150 down on a $725 cue so he does not have a fortune tied up, but I got enough to proceed. That is usually how I do it with about 25% down. He added another $100 to the original $625 cost afterwards after I made some inlay suggestions.
It does not bother me that they call regularly, especially when I am over due. They are excited about getting it and they should be. So a phone call keeps me on my toes. It should not be a problem when you give a time frame and they call you nearing that time. then if you extend it they have every right to call when the new completion date nears. Then if you need to extend it some more they again have the same right nearing the next date. You don't have to waste a lot of time. Just tell him what all you have done to the cue since the last time you spoke and what a reasonable guess at completion date would be now.
 

tattoo

Tatuaje in the house🤘🏻
Silver Member
I don't think there is a suck thing as an impatient customer, I think in most cases inpatients is confused with poor communication. In my opinion customers are just like us, they want to be kept informed, they want to know the details of the transaction, and they must be kept updated with current information on the project good or bad. In my opinion if I do my job and keep my customers informed and up to date on the progress of their cue there is no impatience even those few times that the project has had to go past it's scheduled completion times frame.

JIMO

rep heading your way....
 

CocoboloCowboy

Cowboys are my heros.
Silver Member
I am only a part time cue maker. I let the customer know that my family and regular job come first. I never promise a completion date, because I don't want to miss a date that I promised. I don't take a down payment and I give the customer 30 days to return the cue for either a full refund or another cue. I've only had 1 person in 7 years that I canceled an order on and that was because he called me every week to check on the progress of the cue and try to nail me down on when it was going to be done. Cue building is a hobby for me. If you take the fun out of it for me then I don't want to deal with you.

Honestly is the best policy, customers need to understand the problems a cue maker faces in deal with woods, if they did they would appreciate what a cue maker does better.
 

ARROWCRUSHER

N/ CUE STROKER
Silver Member
???

I guess every situation is different and it depends if there is good communiction from the cuemaker and customer from the start. Is it really to much to ask for a picture the veneers or forearm of a cue you are haveing made before the cue is done! And you already sent money for !! And if you see the maker post pictures of others so why would it hurt to ask ! I myself have pictures of cues I had made in raw form to finish. Two pictures I dont think would be impatient ,,,<< ED
 
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Russell Cues

Maverick Cue Builder
Silver Member
I deal with customers this way, I will only give a "possible" completion date as wood is unpredictable even when the greatest of care is taken. I will take phone calls from a customer anytime and give them any new information I may have. As far as a deposit, if the customer offers or they want a cue that I don't think will sell because it might not appeal to a wide number of people.

Deal with customers politely and genuinely, people respond well to that. If it is near the possible completion date and the cue is not finished, I will let the customer know what is left to be done on the cue and it is imperative that you don't rush any part of building a cue. I dint mind questions or inquires as it keeps me on point as to what I need to do next and when. I love building cues and my wife is sure that is one of my mental defects.

My 2 cents :grin:
 

BHQ

we'll miss you
Silver Member
This is aimed at the cue makers out there. I am not one but do perform services to customers in a different field. I am curious as to how you handle difficult impatient customers. You know the ones. When is my cue going to be done? Can I get more pics of the build? I want to change something.....again. You said my cue would be ready by now? Can I get an update again this week? Etc. As a customer of custom cues I believe in the practice of placing an order for a cue I want and then letting the builder do their thing only approaching them at the time of completion and take any offerings of photos etc as a bonus, not a demand. I understand that customers can be all different but I am sure there are some that just go over the top with impatience. How do you handle them?

i saw this early this morning,
but didnt really have an answer
i still dont :wink:

i have been the luckiest guy on the planet when it comes to customers and thier expectations
at this moment, i'm a good six months behind on one guys cue, and not only is he NOTcomplaining ,
he even wanted to send me more money,
that i turned down

i just finished up one for blowfish, it was probably 3, 4 or 5 months late too
he never bugs me about it, he just let's me go at my own speed
you just cant ask for better people than that
 

KJ Cues

Pro Cue Builder & Repair
Silver Member
Great post Brent

There are a lot of great buyers out there and they are to be congratulated.
They have a real grasp of the intricacies of this trade.
On the other hand, every barrel has it's own bad apple.
So to those bad apples(buyers), do you want to be someone that I will bend-over backwards for to provide my best service or do you want to be someone that I hope I never hear from again?
The CM has to accurately determine for himself who he's going to deal with and who he won't. Otherwise he may find himself driven into the ground like a fence-post. Once again, it ain't always about the money.
 

leon sly

old school maniac!!
Silver Member
Smile:) Say Cheese send a picture to the customer of the Build and everyone's Happy:happydance:
 
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phread59

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I have a cue on order with a well known and respected cue maker. He has missed 3 deadlines so far. Am I worried about it? NAHHH not a bit. His reputation is platinum plated. I know it will get done. And it will be right. I understand wood. It's alive and has it's own mind. It takes some real work to get it to do what you want. I want the perfection he is known for. If it takes extra time so be it. It'll be worth the wait.

Mark shuman
 
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