Hi everyone I never really post on this but I'm so annoyed and need your opinions please....
I've recently been made redundant and decided to venture out into my own business , I won't say what because I don't want to b recognised but anyway at the start of this venture I gave freebies to my friends but now a couple of months on the same friends use my service and never pay I'm kinda shocked by this and feel I can't say anything because il sound mean. Am I being mean? Sorry for being so vague.
You're not being mean, but you are responsible for the situation.
Offer them mates rates in future, or just say no.
I work for myself as a massage therapist and have never given freebies, from the get go, was advice my mother's friend (a beautician) gave me, I do offer them a mates' rate and have given treatments as presents on a [i:134xxqyu]very rare[/i:134xxqyu] occasion. You wouldn't ask your accountant mate to do your taxes for nothing, or your solicitor mate to represent you in court for nothing... so I apply the same rules to myself. I know a couple of people think I'm a tight b!tch (overheard my old housemate on the phone to her friend saying I was "scabby with massages", glad I don't live with her anymore) but it's water off a duck's back to me. I don't make huge money as it is, freebies would kill me. You should tell your friends they have to start paying a mates' rate. Business is business!
Whether your service is a massage or a product, it doesnt matter, as in the world of commerce, goods and services are of equal value.
This isn't ok at all.
Shame on your friends that you are put in an awkward position where you don't know how to resolve it.
What you could do is, send out a generic email like youre advertising your business, and put the prices next to each service/product and say in the subject line to your friends "finally getting around to pricing everything
It's not okay but you'll have to manage it better . If they take the hump then they're not very good friends !
Oh that is very annoying, and you will have to do something about it. I like the idea of "Mates Rates" and sending them a mail or something like Katief suggested. Best to nip it in the bud now. If they dont like it, then they wont use the service but at least its not costing you money ! Freebies are prob a bad idea but sure you live and learn. Best of luck with the new venture.
That's a very tough one. I'm self employed too and was trying to think what I'd do in your situation. Is there one person that you might be able to talk to honestly about it? Maybe tell him/her how hard things are, trying to start a new business, and that you didn't expect people to take a freebie at the start to mean that they'd never have to pay. Tell them that you don't know how to deal with the situation, but that you really can't afford to keep having people use your service for free. Maybe they'd be able to discreetly put the word out that you really do need people to pay if they use your service.
I hope you get it sorted soon hon.
Thanks a million girls for all your replies it makes me feel better that I'm not being a tightass! I am totally at fault though I'm way too soft and find it very hard to ask people for money which does not make a great combo for a good business person so I either have to toughen up or forget about doing well :-) It sounds stupid but I was actually really hurt by it, as if they have a lack of respect for me or something. Anyway thanks again!
Don't be too hurt by it - if they're not self employed they probably just don't get the fact that your time is money, and how hard it is - they probably just think it's great that they have a friend who does whatever it is that you do, and that they get the benefit of it. They probably think it doesn't cost you anything, and equate it to them doing something nice for their friends - they don't necessarily see that it's actually the equivalent of them going to work....if that makes sense!
its a tough one alright,im self employed too and at the start i dident want my friends to come in,i would actually lie and say i was too busy that day to do them,i would offer to do it at home for them because i just dident want to charge them,eventually i told them why and now i do mates rates and sometimes freebies ye know for birthdays and that,if you explain it to your mates they should understand,but i do think it was really cheeky of them for you to supply a service and them just get up and go no offer of payment