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I was taken advantage of!!

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
I am very new at decorating cakes...and this is a sticky situation...feeling the need to rant!!

I have only been working at my job for a few months- and of course everyone knows I am getting into the cake business. One of my boss asks me to make her brother's birthday cake - in the shape of a snowmobile! I smiled and said no problem, but was cringing inside---I've never even rode a snowmobile-let alone know what they look like!

But I research it and am excited for a challenge- my first sculpted cake...then my other boss asks for an anniversary cake on the same day!! Hard to say no, right!?! A fall themed cake with sugar flowers--never made sugar flowers, either- very excited for the challenge again!

I put a lot of effort into planning, and told both I'd make the cakes for what it cost me- since I am so new and just want to make them for experience pictures...ect ect. (That was 2 months ago-now I charge full price b/c of the time and effort alone!)

I quoted the anniversary cake at $40, and the snowmobile at $70 (of course I spent more the 70 though)
The anniversary paid me 40, no problem- loved the cake, raved about it the next day.

The snowmobile boss had previously given me 40 and said -let me know if it will be more then that (ha ha)
When I delivered the cake, she loved it, I told her 70, she made a face...I said pay me when you can though.

Well, it's 2 months later- she never paid me, didn't rave about the cake, and she's been out for a month b/c her back hurts. She comes back to work on Monday---
At this point I don't even know how to confront her about it- it's hard b/c she's my boss- but at the same time- where are you going to ever get a sculpted snowmobile cake for 70!! I shouldn't even have to ask for the other 30, it was a deal and a half for her!! And she acted like it was a lot!! I used 3 scratch sheet cakes, a lot of homemade buttercream and fondant, and a lot of time - since it was my first time doing a cake like that!

I know the holidays just came, plus her son's birthday, and she's having medical problems, so I don't know how bad her finances are....but $30 isn't a lot - and I don't know if I should say anything or just let it go!!

What would u do?
I've learned so much from my mistakes..... I'm thinking of making a few more!
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I've learned so much from my mistakes..... I'm thinking of making a few more!
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post #2 of 18
Thread Starter 
http://cakecentral.com/gallery/2216660/2216662
http://cakecentral.com/gallery/2216660/2216663
http://cakecentral.com/gallery/2216660/2216664

Here are the pics of the snowmobile cake - now I know it has flaws (it was my first sculpted cake) but there's no way you could ever buy a cake like that for $70 - and $40 is a complete joke!!

This cake was made with 3 11x14 inch pans- it's huge!
I've learned so much from my mistakes..... I'm thinking of making a few more!
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I've learned so much from my mistakes..... I'm thinking of making a few more!
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post #3 of 18
Id get the agreement on paper next time and take this loss as a lesson learned
24 years old, Mom to no one and damn proud of it lol. 
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24 years old, Mom to no one and damn proud of it lol. 
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post #4 of 18
Wow. It's absolutely insane to work on anything you haven't been paid for first. I'm sorry that you had to learn this lesson the hard way. From now on, treat every order no matter who it's for, the same. "The price will be xxxx. Would you like to proceed? The deposit is xxx and the balance is due no later than xxxweeks prior to the event."

End of story. You invite things to happen like this when you don't set boundaries and policies. Good luck in the future.
"I can do that, because this is my sandbox and I've got the bullsh*% shovel." ~Dianne Sylvan, Author and Lunatic
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
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"I can do that, because this is my sandbox and I've got the bullsh*% shovel." ~Dianne Sylvan, Author and Lunatic
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Reply
post #5 of 18
I'm pretty non-confrontational too. I would make up a professional looking invoice listing the agreed price, payment, and remaining balance due. Put a due date on it and either leave it on her desk or sweetly say something to the effect of "I'm sure with all that's been going on this has just slipped your mind, but here is an invoice for the final payment on the cake"
post #6 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Debbye27

I shouldn't even have to ask for the other 30, it was a deal and a half for her!! And she acted like it was a lot!!

Exactly. And you'll never have to rant and rave like this again when you get policies in place. And I would stand up straight and say "When would you like to take care of the balance owed on the cake I delivered?" Get your money. And get tough for next time.
"I can do that, because this is my sandbox and I've got the bullsh*% shovel." ~Dianne Sylvan, Author and Lunatic
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Reply
"I can do that, because this is my sandbox and I've got the bullsh*% shovel." ~Dianne Sylvan, Author and Lunatic
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Reply
post #7 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by KoryAK

I'm pretty non-confrontational too. I would make up a professional looking invoice listing the agreed price, payment, and remaining balance due. Put a due date on it and either leave it on her desk or sweetly say something to the effect of "I'm sure with all that's been going on this has just slipped your mind, but here is an invoice for the final payment on the cake"

That's a great idea.
"I can do that, because this is my sandbox and I've got the bullsh*% shovel." ~Dianne Sylvan, Author and Lunatic
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Reply
"I can do that, because this is my sandbox and I've got the bullsh*% shovel." ~Dianne Sylvan, Author and Lunatic
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Reply
post #8 of 18
I feel for you. What you can do is consider this the "price of an education." In other words, instead of paying for an MBA you are paying for a little bit of cake to learn about pricing as well as the business. I would let this one go, and then create an invoice system. Good luck, you will be fine!
post #9 of 18
You did a great job . Ive read about so many people getting stiffed on this site. The written invoice is a great idea and makes it more business like.Im sure you can get a form or book at staples or print somethinvg off the computer. I would say half when you take the order and the other half is due upon DELIVERY. Good Luck.
post #10 of 18
You did a great job . Ive read about so many people getting stiffed on this site. The written invoice is a great idea and makes it more business like.Im sure you can get a form or book at staples or print somethinvg off the computer. I would say half when you take the order and the other half is due upon DELIVERY. Good Luck.
post #11 of 18
Does NY allow home-based businesses to legally sell directly to customers? I believe they are only allowed to sell wholesale, if that's the case I would be very careful about printing up any official invoices.
post #12 of 18
Personally, I would let it go. I agree that you should be paid for your work and that the cake should have been a lot more than $70....but...bosses are human too and they hold grudges over little petty things. If you make a fuss about your $30 when she's just come back from sick leave, who knows how she'll react? Maybe nothing obvious, but giving you the most unpleasant tasks, cutting your hours or scheduling you to work days/times you've said you can't (depending on what kind of place it is and if you're hourly and all that)...right now, the way it stands is that you did her a favor, which is not a bad position to be in with a boss.

But do get paid up front if you ever make her a cake again.
post #13 of 18
I am from NY and home based as well. We can sell directly to the customer. I have been inspected through my County Department of Health. If I do decide to wholesale to companies then we need to go through the Dept. of Ag.
Sorry to hear about what happened to you. I hate asking people to pay even though I know that they owe. I think that it is because we are so new and unfortunately have to learn lessons the hard way. I had a miserable customer months back that told me that she did not like my vanilla cupcakes that I made for her and ever since then I am paranoid with the recipe even though I have had nothing but rave reviews from it. It is just something that I need to get over. If I was you, I would probably just take the loss, especially since she is your boss. Hopefully one day you can look at her and say, "I quit because I have become so successful with my cakes, I don't need this job anymore."
Good luck! That is my hope with my loser boss....
post #14 of 18
Thread Starter 
Thanks all!

I am going to take the loss, cause it's my boss icon_smile.gif
And Jason Kraft makes a good point!

I do see this type of message on here -frequently, and see where everyone replies with...get your money first! I just had to get my own rant out b/c she is due back on Monday - and it's gonna bother me a little...

But, I have purchased cakeboss software to help with pricing, I am working on creating invoices- and I am so over- the "discounted cakes b/c I am worried about my experience level" - my time and effort deserves to be paid for- and I am so glad I found this site for all the support!

I don't plan on being at this job forever----I just moved to NY from Florida and this was the first thing I found that paid decent- a regular 9-5...I bring in goodies to the hundreds of people here, and I actually get cake orders off of that- so no real loss I guess.

I just am uncomfortable with her knowing that she didn't pay me and I didn't bring it up, also uncomfortable with bringing it up way after the fact......so needless to say- lesson learned- I got to do a sculpted cake...got a pic of it....more practice....and now I know - pay first, cake second icon_smile.gif
I've learned so much from my mistakes..... I'm thinking of making a few more!
Reply
I've learned so much from my mistakes..... I'm thinking of making a few more!
Reply
post #15 of 18
I think when you told her to 'pay you when you can' live probably got busy, especially with the holidays and that got pushed out of her mind.

You could appoarch the subject with her, but only you know how it will really go and if it would be worth it. It could very well be a "oh, I'm sorry, I totally forgot here let me get you the money." or a "well we liked the cake but we weren't orginally planning on spending that much."

My guess since you already got a shocked face at the price would be the latter. In the future, even if you don't get cash in hand at the time, make sure the full price is discussed before you even start working on the cake. Many people ask those just starting out to do a cake for them because they think they can get it free (Oh don't you want the practice) or very, very cheap.

Another option for you would be, if you are fine at this point not getting the money, and can chalk it up to a lesson learned would be to go to her and explain that you realise now that you shocked her with the price, and that you realise now there was a misunderstanding about how much a one of a kind, scupluted cake, even done for cost would actually cost. You could tell her you'd appreaciate if she could finish paying you the $30, but if not, you understand and in the future will be able to share teh exact cost of the cake upfront.
My Weight Loss Support Group is The Chunky Monkeys!
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My Weight Loss Support Group is The Chunky Monkeys!
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