Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Tuesday Coffee Chat: Employ Some Respect, Please

Rory Bore at Ink Interrupted hosts the Tuesday Coffee Chat, and this week she asks the question: The Struggle is Real!   Rant, or comic relief: what are you struggling with these days?

It is going to sound petty, my rant, that is.

As a small business owner -- usually only one employee, me -- i struggle with people who cancel my work at the last minute, or who don't pay on time, or who pay me less than what we agreed on.

Look, i don't mind cleaning your home, even though it can involve some rather nasty things.  Your freezer accidentally defrosted and i'm cleaning mold from it?  Not a problem.  The candle wax dripped behind the piece of furniture and held moisture into the hardwood floor and the floor is rotting and there's candle wax mixed with it?  Yes, i'll clean what i can before the people come to repair that part of the floor, even if it means dealing with rotten wood mixed with candle wax and splinters.  The kids are all sick and there are some nasty sheets and blankets in the wash?  That's okay, i'm a mom, i've been there, it isn't a problem.

The problem is that as a small business person, i count on every client.  My bills can depend on me getting to every workplace this week.  When you call me at the last minute and cancel, especially if it's for something you knew about weeks ago and we could have rescheduled, i'm out some of the money i needed for bills or groceries, and i have no way to pick up another client at the last minute.

Please, leave me a check on the days you know i will be there if you aren't going to be home.  Having to wait until i come back in two weeks to get paid, then having to remind you that you didn't pay me last time, again leaves me short of funds and is embarrassing for both of us.

If we agreed your house is worth a certain amount for me to clean, just because i've cleaned it several times now and gotten a bit faster so i'm done sooner (or Sweetie comes with me to clean because he's bored at home and so between us we get it done faster), that doesn't mean you pay me less, because i'm still cleaning the same amount.  I've just gotten used to the quirks of your home, so i know how to get it done more easily.  That doesn't make my work worth less.

Grandma and Grandpa have a housekeeper.  They pay her $100 every Wednesday.  She gets that whether she gets the house done in 8 hours or in 3.  She is good and efficient and generally takes 3-4 hours and gets to everything they've agreed on in that time and they are happy with it and she's happy.  That's how it should be.

That's my rant.  The fact is, i work hard, and i charge a lot less than all of the big cleaning companies you could call (they would charge you double or more, i promise), so please remember that i'm counting on this work.  If you get to where you can't afford it, that's fine, tell me, we will still be friends.  Please don't think that you can play fast and loose with my time or my pay just because i'm a company of one.

Today is:

9-1-1 Day -- the first 911 call in North America was placed, demonstrating the new system, on this day in 1968

Akiyoshidai Yamayaki -- Akiyoshidai, Japan (dry grass on the mountain side is burned in this coming of spring ceremony; date subject to change)

Bonten Matsuri -- Miyoshi-jinja Shrine, Akita, Japan (two day festival to ask for good crops this year)

Do a Grouch a Favor Day -- internet generated attempt to get us to either get the grouches on our side, or make us cynical

Independence Day -- Lithuania (National Day/Restoration of Statehood)(1918)

Kyoto Protocol Day -- International (treaty on climate change; today is proposed as "Wear purple for Kyoto Day")

National Almond Day

Respectable Tales of Kelp-Koli -- Fairy Calendar (5 minutes only) 

St. Juliana of Cumae's Day (Patron of the ill)

St. Onesimus' Day (runaway slave of Philemon, converted by Paul, of whom the Letter to Philemon was written)

Birthdays Today:

Christopher Eccleston, 1964
John McEnroe, 1959
Ice T, 1959
LeVar Burton, 1957
James Ingram, 1956
William Katt, 1951
Richard Ford, 1944
Barry Primus, 1938
Sonny Bono, 1935
Vera-Ellen, 1921
Patty Andrews, 1920
Jimmy Wakely, 1914
Hugh Beaumont, 1909
Richard McDonald, 1909
George Kennan, 1904
Edgar Bergan, 1903
Robert Joseph Flaherty, 1884
Johann Strauss, 1866
Nichiren, 1222
Emperor Yingzong of China, 1032

Debuting/Premiering Today:

"What's My Line"(TV Game Show), 1950
"Le Voyageur Sans Baggage"(Anouilh Play), 1937
"The Marquise"(Coward Play), 1927
Chung Sai Yat Po(Publication; first Chinese daily newspaper in US), 1900
"Werther"(Massenet Opera), 1892
Ladies' Home Journal(Publication), 1883
"Orpheus"(Liszt Opera), 1854
"Elegy Written in a Country Church Yard"(First Publication), 1751

Today in History:

9th recorded perihelion passage of Halley's Comet, 374
Pope Gregory the Great issues a decree saying that "God bless you" is the correct response to a sneeze, 600
English king Charles I accepts Triennial Act, requiring the king to assemble Parliament at least once every 3 years, 1641
The first known check (cheque) is written, for 400 English Pounds Sterling (currently on display at Westminster Abbey), 1659
Kentucky passes a law permitting women to attend school under certain conditions, 1838
Weenen Massacre: Hundreds of Voortrekkers along the Blaukraans River, Natal are killed by Zulus, 1838
American Charles Wilkes discovers Shackleton Ice Shelf, Antarctica, 1840
The Battle of Sobraon ends the First Sikh War in India, 1846
Studebaker Brothers wagon company, precursor of the automobile manufacturer, is established, 1852
The French Government passes a law to set the A-note above middle C to a frequency of 435 Hz, in an attempt to standardize the pitch, 1859
The Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks forms, 1868
The first Chinese daily newspaper in the US, Chung Sai Yat Po, begins publication in San Francisco, 1900
The first US Esperanto Club organizes in Boston, 1905
The first synagogue in 425 years opens in Madrid, Spain, 1917
Howard Carter unseals the burial chamber of Pharaoh Tutankhamun, 1923
The first patent is issued for a tree, to James Markham for a peach tree, 1932
Wallace H. Carothers receives a United States patent for nylon, 1937
Canadians are granted Canadian citizenship after 80 years of being British subjects. Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King becomes the first Canadian citizen, 1947
Britain abolishes the death penalty, 1956
Fidel Castro becomes Premier of Cuba after dictator Fulgencio Batista was overthrown on January 1, 1959
In Haleyville, Alabama, the first 9-1-1 emergency telephone system goes into service, 1968
The first computer bulletin board system is created (CBBS in Chicago, Illinois), 1978
The trial of John Demjanjuk, accused of being a Nazi guard dubbed "Ivan the Terrible" in Treblinka extermination camp, starts in Jerusalem, 1987
The Kyoto Protocol comes into force, following its ratification by Russia, 2005
The last Mobile Army Surgical Hospital (MASH) is decommissioned by the United States Army, 2006


  1. I'm sure as a business woman you need as many clients as you can get, but the offenses you mention must make your blood boil. I would have a two strike rule and then tell them to go fish! Of course as a business woman that may not always be your best option...you could just complain to your boss...wait...guess not.

    Anyway, that does suck, I hate how some people think it is ok to take advantage.

  2. i wish you could print this out and give it to those problem clients - but you know they'd get all in a huff over it. *sigh*

  3. I may have been guilty of this at times not realizing that money on time is essential. We can pay our telephone etc. over several days and we forget that small business owners rely on regular flow of income. I wish we could advertise this more often!!

  4. Your time is as valuable as mine. I cancelled a hair appointment the day before the appointment. I stopped by and paid her the full amount and then rescheduled for the next week. The next week I paid her in full again. Her time is just as important as mine.

    I would be dumping the person that's doing this to you as soon as this person settles up. Just saying. This stress isn't worth it.

    Have a fabulous day. ☺

  5. I imagine it's common for people to take advantage of people like you. It's a shame.

  6. Ugh. I'm sorry this has been an issue for you. I hate that people can be this way. I used to help my grandmother clean houses when I was a kid. It's dang hard work even on the days it doesn't take long. Sending you love and hugs, mimi!

  7. I can empathize with you on this. We're self-employed as well and we are at the mercy of when our clients decide to pay us for services provided. I can't tell you how many times one of our clients beg for us to fix a door right away and then it takes them 3 months to pay the bill.

  8. My boyfriend deals with these problems in his handyman business all the time. People should realize that when they hire one person to do a job, and they trust that person to do it, that it's worth more than just minimum wage, whether or not life gets in the way. Also, it's okay to "fire" a bad client who doesn't respect you. Sometimes jobs just aren't worth it.


Thanks for meandering by and letting me know you were here!