When I first started in the floral business I was trained by some pretty awesome retail florists. I learned how to describe my product, how to listen to what the customer wanted and how to sell it to them in a way that made them feel good. “The customer is always right.” If you’ve worked in a retail location you have no doubt uttered these words aloud to your coworkers…most likely in jest or with extreme sarcasm due to an insane incident with a customer…or, perhaps you’ve said it and actually meant it.
In many cases the customer is right. After all it’s our job to try our best to make them happy, but what about the times when the customer is not right? What about the customers that aren’t “right” because what you do is not what they are looking for? This is why realizing that not everyone is your customer is essential.
Perhaps you’ve had a customer with floral budget for their wedding which you find somewhat modest, but completely workable for what they requested. To you it may seem modest, but to your couple it may feel like a lot more. That customer may make your work much harder than someone with double the budget because of how they feel about spending that money. Every client’s needs should be evaluated and if need be, you should pass them up if they are unmanageable or unreasonable or perhaps simply because they request a design style that is not your taste.
For the first time in 10 years I walked away from a client because we simply weren’t a good fit. At first I struggled with the decision…Was I really going to refund a non-refundable deposit?…Was I overreacting?…Could I just forget about her rude conduct and move forward? The answer became clear to me and the answer was GET OUT! RUN! Refund and don’t look back. That’s what I did (in an ever-so-polite way) and I did not regret my decision one bit. This was not my customer. This customer was not right for me.
When you find a customer base that believes in what you do, believes in your talent and feels that you’re worth it, then you and your customer will both be right.
Floral Artistry by Alison Ellis