One of the biggest problems of being in a business that makes people happy like the cake business is that you often get caught up in the cycle of saying YES all the time to please people because after all, this is why you started baking in the first place – right?
I mean that feeling we get after a customer or a friend gets their cake and are so happy with it just makes up for all the effort and the love we put in that cake but after a while of saying YES to all the things you don’t want to define yourself with, that type of very difficult customers you don’t want to deal with again and the absolute ugly designs you hated making but made them anyway because you just couldn’t say NO from your fear of upsetting a customer.
For the past five years, I have done this mistake and I have never been able to say NO to any customers, even those who abused their right to a cake and played with my feelings to get more than what they had asked for and what they are paying for just because my ultimate goal was to please all my customers.
And then this made my profile full of those crappy cakes I never wanted to make, which attracted customers that anted crappy cakes and I kept getting all the people who couldn’t get their last-minute orders anywhere else, my reputation as the cheap cake lady that says YES to everything even if that meant that I didn’t get sleep for three days in a row.
This became a never-ending cycle, I was tired, drained and unhappy with my cakes.
This all changed about a week ago after spending two days trying to satisfy a customer even before she confirmed her order, I sent her sketches and waited patiently for her confirmation while she refused one sketch after the other and then drew an unrealistic sketch and tried to force me to make it. This is the point when I came to realize that not every inquiry is a customer and unless I say YES they are not my customers yet.
Say YES to the things that get you closer to your goal, sacrifice your sleep and anything you want for it as long as you end up one step closer than yesterday to where you want to be.
I’m surprised that it took me this long to realize it, but having the right set of friends has helped me a lot.
Asking people who are not in business for business advice is not the best thing to do even if they are very dear to your heart!
To get a business advice, ask someone who is running a business that you look up to become like one day.