Customer Related Question: What Would You Do?
In 2008, I sold a maple board to a customer. Some time later, about two months later I believe, I received an email from him saying the board warped and he demanded a replacement. When I refused, given the amount of time, he skewered me on another forum going so far as to post photos and try to make me look like a cheat and a thief. When he leaked the details out, things changed. Seems he left it under hot running water for 5 full minutes and was mad because it warped. (A detail he conveniently left out in the emails he sent me.) In the photos there were dark splotchy areas which I believe was mold. His last post in that thread was that he gave the board to his mother and purchased a teak board.
Fast forward to a few weeks back. He sent another email asking for pricing on a special order. I thought the name was familiar and when I checked my records, I found it was the same person. So I deleted the email. Today he sent another email asking for pricing. I replied this time asking if this was ***** **** who bought a board in 2008. Here is his reply.
"You're a terrible business man. Believe it or not I've referred a lot of business to you since then. Are you going to be petty or do you want more business? For the record, you treated me like sh** before and I got past it, have you?"
Would you send the quote or ignore this customer?
Move on. You will never make him happy and most people that hear ranting and raving on the forums know something is a little "off."
IMHO, don't sweat it, and don't ever knowingly do business with him again. -M
Neither - I'd reply with something like that you while you appreciate his inquiry into making another purchase, you are respectfully declining to do any further business with him.
You're a class act, Dave. Whatever you do decide to do, it'll be a good choice.
I'd never sell anything to a guy like that.
Sorry Dave, I wasn't trying to be rude.
I think you should sell him whatever he wants to buy. His money spends just fine. You can always tell him where to go if he invents another problem. Positive reviews for you will drown this guy out no problem.
Ignore him. To do otherwise is just feeding the monster.
Hmmm. It's interesting though that he'd come back for another order, and a special order at that. Someone looking for trouble or genuinely unhappy with a provider wouldn't do that. Dave, if you feel up to it, perhaps it would be useful to write back and politely express that you have some concerns about taking on the order given how things went last time - and then ask why, given the way the customer felt last time, he's now interested in another order from you.
Simply by asking whether this is so-and-so, you have still remained polite and I think you can still keep on that way. If nothing else, and even if you do decline the order, it could be good to find out why the change of heart - if indeed it is a change of heart.
Advise him on another teak board. After a run in like the first one you are going to have nothing but more trouble, if you don't mind putting up with it and defending yourself money is money as someone above said.
Dave, it's only one customer, disgruntled at that, so my suggestion is to just move on.
I'm surprised by all the conjecture about his intentions and how he might behave in the future.
What we know for a fact is the guy has a pattern of being a manipulative liar who is looking to make trouble.