Friday, May 29, 2009

Forever Friends!

In business, there are some people you should never do business with. Your friends and your family! Yes, sometimes friends and family can give you a heck of a lot more headache than clients who are practically strangers to begin with.

About a two months ago, a friend of mine, well more like an ex-colleague asked me to do some work for him. We were both working together about 7 years ago when I was in this event company. He was the marketing manager and I was the key account manager. We got a long pretty well both as friends and as colleagues.

After a couple of years, he left the company and a year or so later I followed suit. We stayed in touch and met up for those 'teh tarik' (drink) sessions from time to time to just catch up on old times. Then he opened up his own business doing premiums and stuff. At that time I was working in my previous company.

Being a close friend, I'd call him up first before any other supplier whenever I had clients who needed premium items and when he had clients that needed advertising or design work done, he'd call me. It was a mutual win-win thing for both of us.

As I was saying, about two months ago, he wanted me to do some work for him for one of his clients. As per the usual, a quote was given and being a friend, I didn't squeeze him too much on the quote like I do to my normal clients (LOL!). Everything was agreed upon before proceeding, the production and delivery time line and also payment terms.

The project was for a fridge magnet. We started work on the job and that's where things got dicey. First he asked ridiculously impossible things like wanting a sample on the spot. In the first place, he agreed before hand that he doesn't need a sample. When I told him that they would be additional charges for the sample and that it most definitely wouldn't be ready on the spot, he started making a big fuss.

He started harping about him being a friend and giving me business in these hard economic times and all that crap. I was stunned. First of all, I didn't beg him for the job, he came to me. Secondly I have other clients of my own. Thirdly, the project is so small that it really is not worth doing but as a friend I agreed. My boss wasn't too keen to take the project in the first place but because I vouched for this guy, he agreed.

To cut a long story short, this friend of mine gave us grieve throughout the production of this fridge magnet with demands like wanting partial delivery and all that nonsense before our agreed upon delivery date. After we finally got the job completed, my boss and me both breathe a huge sigh of relieve! But that wasn't the end of our problems.

When it came time for payment, I called him up and he started berating me about chasing him for payment and that the job was not done to his satisfaction, etc, etc, etc. Chasing him for payment? This was my first time calling him and even then it's one week plus after the payment terms date.

And if I did such an unsatisfactory job, why hasn't the client rejected the darn magnets? I was appalled. If this was my usual client, I wouldn't have been bothered cos I expect them to do stuff like these. But this guy was a friend! Someone I knew and worked with before and now he's treating me like some loan shark chasing him for payment!

After about 2 weeks, he finally called me up and in the harshest tone he could muster, yelled at me and told me to meet him in a shopping mall in the busiest part of town to collect my cheque saying he doesn't have time to come to my office cos it's in a secluded area! He said if I'm so desperate for the cheque then I'll have to just drive up and see him.

I felt so cheap, really I did. If it was up to me, I'd have told him to stuff that cheque so far up his behind that it would come out his mouth. But I kept my cool and said, ok I'll come over after lunch. Then just as I was about to leave after lunch to see him, he called and said he's not free to see me cos he's got more important things to do and that he will fix a new time next week when he's free!

That was when my fuse ran out! I screamed at him and told him in no uncertain terms what a fraud he is with such colorful language and a few remarks about bodily harm, it would have made Mike Tyson or Eddie Murphy blush! Then not just stopping there, I went up to the office and even wrote him a nice long email to cement my colorful phrases which I uttered to him over the phone.

That actually worked cos he's never known to see me loose my cool that badly. The very next day, he called me and in the nicest of tones said if I could meet him in another shopping mall and he'll have my payment ready. LOL!

Almost a month and a half late with loads of stress, shame and anger thrown in but I eventually did get my payment. As for my friendship with him, let's just say that if I see if walking on the road somewhere, I'll run him down! Hahaha!

The moral of the story is to NEVER do work for your friends and your family members. I've had a bad experience with doing work for family members before too but that's a post for another day.
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56 comments:

  1. FC! FC! Hahahahaha Bikin Panas!!!!!!!!!!

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  2. Your cutting of your long story short kan...Hahaha So salah use of words lah Nick!

    But I know what cha mean, sometimes really susah kalo work with friends or fam...lagi susah if pinjam duit!!!!!

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  3. about friendship some for real some is not so got to beware!

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  4. my bro got a friend kept borrow money from him. :( I sure hope he is no longer friend that guy as no pay back his money!

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  5. Woi! No work issit?? Got time to make chicken chop some more lah! Hahahahahahaha

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  6. @th - no pay, must putus kawan!!! hehehe okay, it's a Friday. I'm just in one of those moods. :P

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  7. Agreed. Some friends take friendship for granted.

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  8. Nick?? Losing His temper??? Hmmmmm...that's new to me..hehehee
    But whatever it is, ur so called 'friend' is very rude..!

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  9. Rozella - Bikin Panas is the right word ... LOL!

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  10. Rozella - Hahaha ... yeah, I really don't know the meaning of a short story!

    I'd rather do work for total strangers cos then you can expect the worse ...

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  11. TH - Yeah, some friends just wanna take advantage of you, that's all ...

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  12. TH - LOL! I'm sure they're no longer friends.

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  13. Rozella - Judging by the amount of comments here from you, I should be asking you that ... hahaha!

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  14. Rozella - Yeah, Friday does that to me too ... I live for weekend :D Happy weekend to you.

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  15. Gallivanter - Yeah, that's why I only have two real good friends these days.

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  16. KadusMama - They are times when I do lose my. Wifey says I'm losing my temper a little too much these days and she's right ... hehehe ...

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  17. Yeah so true, never do biz with frens/family, for sure ada something wrong later and then you'll end up not being such good buddies anymore. Sad but true!

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  18. Hey, I can see AG is PR1 from here, sure or not no PR? :)

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  19. Yes, it is so true! Never do business or work with family and friends. It spells trouble and headache!!!

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  20. Hahahaha Curi-curi lah. Malas already me buat kerja just now. Tsk tsk tsk...not like it will be that much of a happy weekend tho becos not only am I working on Sat and Sun. I will be working on Mon which is a public holiday here! Hahahahaha

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  21. Can I get another tequila shot please? Hahahaha

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  22. Marzie - Yup, better to do business with total strangers!

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  23. Marzie - Mana you see PR1 for AG? Everywhere I check it's big fat zero!

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  24. Forever friends...NOT! Sorry about your situation. You must have yelled the daylights out of that guy that he finally agreed to pay you. Bad character doesn't make a good friend.

    I believe it's better not to go onto business with friends. The best of friends can end up as the worst of foes.

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  25. i agree, nick.. was doing some project for this friend of mine... she gave me projects and my boss keep increasing the price because he said she won bother because she trusted me as a friend for giving her the best deal.. :(

    felt being used for the friendship...

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  26. Waw that's wut we call taking advantage of friendship man. I seriously hate when friends does that. I've been taken advantage of from friends and family members before. Reminds me when my bro took my network card and use the "But I'm your brother" statement *sigh. Sad sad world it is. There's no way to be fair.

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  27. Rose - Well, that was the last friend I'm going to do business with, that's for sure!

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  28. Rozella - Where la you working that you have to work on weekends? Want me to get Spiff to go zap your bosses? LOL! Yeah, I also malas to work, especially on a Friday ...

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  29. Rozella - Urrmmm, I want one too ... hahaha!

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  30. Mei Teng - Yeah, but sometimes I think if one is a real friend, then they wouldn't take advantage of you but that's really not the case with most people ...

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  31. Bosscat - That's what made me real made, being used as friend for your own needs!

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  32. Maslight - Unfortunately you're right, there is no way to be fair in this world. People just want what's best for them and don't care how they get it ...

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  33. your friend is quite rude lah!

    enjoy yr weekend Nick :-)

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  34. Oh no, sorry Nick, yest I saw it was PR 1, back to 0 today! I installed a FF add-on, so now I can see everyone's PR while I surf. Good feature to have. :)

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  35. I can't believe he gave you such a hard time! And he was a mate. I guess he showed his true colours in the end. But I'm sorry you had to go through that.

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  36. Monica - Yes, he is and btw, he's no longer my friend :D

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  37. Marzie - No worries :D I had that installed in my FF but disabled it cos I hati sakit everytime I see my own blog PR0!

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  38. The World According To Me - That's what bugged me the most, he was a friend! Anyways, he is now no longer a friend anymore ...

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  39. I think you are right. Never go into business with close friends. I've seen how close friends end up as bitter enemies after being involved in a business together.

    Haha, so much about your long story cut short. Next time, pls send your draft to me so I can write out a summary for you. I charge only RM10 for this hard work! : )

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  40. I never take my very good friend as my supplier even though she asked many times.. i told her i rather not break the friendship.. i rather not having to chase her for things.. and make both of us stressed out.. hahhaha.. and i still have a friend :)

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  41. True. Never do business with friends and relatives.

    Once, my dad wanted to paint our home in Kuching. When our relatives heard about it, they offered their services (their son-in-law is a contractor, it seems). They say they would give cheap price coz we are afterall "family".

    In the end, they charged us over RM10k bcoz of "labor" charges. Can you believe it, from the original RM6k to RM10k? Buat sakit hati jer...

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  42. Friends and relatives, you're not supposed to work with. I always say that. It's goes wrong for sure! :o)

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  43. Yes, yes, yes! Please zap away!!!!!!!!!

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  44. Hahahaha 11am now. Come we go happy hour????

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  45. Foong - I don't know the meaning of short story la ... LOL!

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  46. AnnyBoo - I think that's the best policy to adopt. At least that way the friendship won't be ruined. But all that said aside, there are only two people I would willing do work for and those two are my two and only best buddies :D

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  47. Perky - RM6K to RM10K! I'd be sakit hati too even more so since they were supposed to be 'family' some more!

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  48. Cidao - Yup, that's a recipe for disaster!

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  49. Rozella - LOL! Considered it done. Spiff will be deployed to zap your bosses! LOL!

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  50. Rozella - Urrmmm, happy hour starts at 11 am, ah? LOL!

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  51. It's true, best to avoid doing work for friends or relatives! This guys sounds like someone I know and avoid like hell these days.

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  52. Yahoo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Go Spiff, go!!!!!

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  53. If you 9am pun boleh! Hahahaha Bring Annyboo too!!

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  54. BT - I'm avoiding this guy like the plague these days! I'm through doing work for friends. For me from now on, I treat everyone like a client.

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  55. Rozella - You really, really, really free huh :D

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  56. Rozella - 9am hour? I'm still sleeping la ... but maybe Anny might be awake, Nessa too ... hahaha!

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