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  #1  
Old 08-16-2012, 06:38 AM
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Nickel Nickel is offline
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Default Maybe Next Week

So dcg was suppose to start today. So last night i pulled all my toys scrubbed them down, sanitized them, and everything. I was up until about 1030 just getting everything ready. Then i got up at 6, took care of my dogs, crated them, and ran the vacuum through the whole house. Got ready, pulled out all my dc forms and sign in sheet. And at 715 i got a call that dcd mil wants to keep dcg for a few more days and she might start next week and he will call me tomorrow to confirm. Sigh. The cleaning was stuff i had to do anyway but i sorta had a feeling it was going to go this way. Honestly i dont think dcm is going to be happy anywhere she enrolls. But im really bummed. I was looking forward to taking my first child but it looks like it wont be today and if i had to guess id say probably not next week either. Does it get better?
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Old 08-16-2012, 07:22 AM
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Lilbutterflie Lilbutterflie is offline
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Sorry you have had to wait! It does sound strange that the mom seems so wishy washy about the start date. Have you had them sign any paperwork yet? Have they given you a signed contract stating their start date, or have they given a deposit?

I recommend you have every client sign a contract (with a start date) and give a deposit prior to enrolling them. This way, you know they are serious about enrolling and you know they have a solid start date (that they are contractually obligated to start paying on such date).
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Old 08-16-2012, 07:37 AM
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I know I should have and I do have a contract. But they contacted me Tuesday because they needed care starting Thursday. So everything kind of went really fast. They didn't accept the spot until last night. So I was going to have them sign the contract when they came today. But for now I'm not really counting on them starting at all.

dcm had the baby enrolled at daycare. They took her but coudln't leave her there. Another baby was in a swing crying and mom just couldn't leave her there. So now they had to find someone else. So it all went really fast. I don't think dcm is going to be comfortable with anyone. I know the mother in law is watching her oldest son until he starts back at preschool in September at their church. The baby isn't old enough to start there. And I'm starting to think that mil is gong to continue watching the infant.

dcd said he'd call me tonight to let me know for definite. But I have this feeling that he's going to tell me nevermind.

It was funny because this morning I even told my husband. Watch, I'm going to get a call at 7:15 that they changed their mind. I'm just getting so discouraged that I will never get any kids. I've had my ads out there for over a month and seven interviews and basically no enrollments

I don't know what I am doing wrong but it is a huge blow to my ego. Then I had someone that wanted to start and I told them I had another family looking at the spot and I would let them know the next afternoon. So I called to offer them the spot and they had found someone else! That fast! I'm glad they found someone, but I'm realy starting to get discouraged.... sigh...
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Old 08-16-2012, 08:01 AM
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Lilbutterflie Lilbutterflie is offline
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Try not to get discouraged. It has been rough around here to fill spots with good clients for me, too.

One thing you could think about doing, is following up with those who interviewed but did not choose you. Send them an email telling them that in order to make your daycare the best it can be, you would like their feedback as to why they chose to go elsewhere. That way, you can understand the reasons you have had interviews with no success. And it will help you make improvements based on their feedback.

It definitely sounds like you may be right about this family. Nothing negative towards you, but if a family can get free care with a close family member, they will definitely take it! And it's really what is best, too!

Don't be discouraged, just keep putting yourself out there!! Clients will come!
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  #5  
Old 08-16-2012, 08:11 AM
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That's a good idea. Thanks. It's rather awkward for me but I guess I don't have anything to lose right! lol...

Thanks for the support. I will try to do that. Let's see how many of them answer
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  #6  
Old 08-16-2012, 08:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Nickel View Post
Then I had someone that wanted to start and I told them I had another family looking at the spot and I would let them know the next afternoon. So I called to offer them the spot and they had found someone else! That fast! I'm glad they found someone, but I'm realy starting to get discouraged.... sigh...
NEVER tell anyone that someone esle is looking for the spot. Interview if a family sounds promising. I interview even when I am full and have a wait list. You just never know what can or will happen (as you found out).

Interview and and if you have two families looking at one spot and they are both a great fit, then it is whomever signs up and pays first that gets the space.

Hang in there and yes, it DOES get better. Daycare has it's highs and lows and clients come and go.

Keep advertsing and keep your chin up! When you are optimistic good things happen.

Positive attitude girl!
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  #7  
Old 08-16-2012, 08:35 AM
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Thanks, Black Cat

But what do you do if you have an interview, they want to start, but you have another interview tomorrow for the same spot? I really would have rathered the second family, but they backed out.

The first family called me back and said they wanted the spot. I told them I had one more interview and I would let them know a definite by the next day. I had already met mom of the first family. This was just for me to meet the children and see if it was a good fit. But then mom backed out. By then it was too late for me to get the first family.

So what do you do if they want the spot and you need to give them an answer right then but you aren't sure?
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  #8  
Old 08-16-2012, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Nickel View Post
Thanks, Black Cat

But what do you do if you have an interview, they want to start, but you have another interview tomorrow for the same spot? I really would have rathered the second family, but they backed out.

The first family called me back and said they wanted the spot. I told them I had one more interview and I would let them know a definite by the next day. I had already met mom of the first family. This was just for me to meet the children and see if it was a good fit. But then mom backed out. By then it was too late for me to get the first family.

So what do you do if they want the spot and you need to give them an answer right then but you aren't sure?
NEVER EVER give an immediate answer. Every decision needs a 24 hour minimum wait period. This is not only for me to really think about it but for the family as well. I don't want clients that just take whatever there is out there and then not be happy.

Interview and say at the end, "Thank you for your time, I will call you tomorrow by *** P.M. and we can go from there."

If the family says they need to start immediately, I will say that I am sorry but I require BOTH provider and parent to have a 24 hour period so they can review what we talked about and make sure we are each making the right decision.

And in all honesty, when I first opened, I wasn't as strict about the perfect fit as much as I am now. I think your biggest priority is getting clients in right now much more than simply searching for that perfect client...kwim?

I wouldn't take a family with a million red flags, but if I really needed to fill spots, I would definitely consider taking a family with only a couple red flags.....just make sure the red flags are ones you can manange or maybe even change with time.

Your priorities at this point should be getting clients and and getting your name out there. You can be picky, just not as picky as someone who is really established or has been in the business for years and years.

I know that sounds kinda sucky, but I think that you learn a lot from the "not so perfect clients". They help hone your backbone, build your confidence levels and help you see what rules/policies really work for you and which ones don't.

Hope that makes sense and helps too.
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  #9  
Old 08-16-2012, 12:30 PM
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I hope you charged a deposit at least.
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  #10  
Old 08-16-2012, 12:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Blackcat31 View Post
NEVER tell anyone that someone esle is looking for the spot.
Blackcat, Can you help me understand why you don't think this is a good idea? I've done it before and am now wondering if I shouldn't in the future. Thanks!
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  #11  
Old 08-16-2012, 01:04 PM
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Blackcat, Can you help me understand why you don't think this is a good idea? I've done it before and am now wondering if I shouldn't in the future. Thanks!
Personally I feel that it isn't a good idea because it forces people to make decisions based on pressure that they need to hurry or lose the spot.

I feel that it is important to build a relationship (potential or current client) individually and one person's relationship with me should never be based on anyone else's doings or interests.

If I have a spot open, I will interview until I find a good fit. I don't like to say "Oh, someone else might be interested in the space too so I can't give you a decision until next week." To me, that creates competition or an atmosphere that it is some how them vs someone else and that is usually (at least for me) never the case.

Being pressured to take a spot simply because someone else may be interested lends itself to bad, hasty or uneducated choices for both parent and/or provider. Does that make sense?
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  #12  
Old 08-16-2012, 07:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Blackcat31 View Post
Personally I feel that it isn't a good idea because it forces people to make decisions based on pressure that they need to hurry or lose the spot.

I feel that it is important to build a relationship (potential or current client) individually and one person's relationship with me should never be based on anyone else's doings or interests.

If I have a spot open, I will interview until I find a good fit. I don't like to say "Oh, someone else might be interested in the space too so I can't give you a decision until next week." To me, that creates competition or an atmosphere that it is some how them vs someone else and that is usually (at least for me) never the case.

Being pressured to take a spot simply because someone else may be interested lends itself to bad, hasty or uneducated choices for both parent and/or provider. Does that make sense?
It certainly does - thank you!!
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  #13  
Old 08-16-2012, 08:09 PM
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Nickel Nickel is offline
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So. What do you say?

If for instance you have an interview on monday and another scheduled for say wed or thursday. And mom calls back on wed before you interview the other family and says she wants to enroll but you have another one scheduled. Do u just do first come first serve and tell the next parent sorry now im full or do you ask the first parent to wait one more day? I only have three spots so if a mom comes and fills two of them with kids that ate soso im kind of stuck. I dont need a perfect family but i dont need a nightmare parent or child either kwin?
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  #14  
Old 08-17-2012, 10:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Nickel View Post
So. What do you say?

If for instance you have an interview on monday and another scheduled for say wed or thursday. And mom calls back on wed before you interview the other family and says she wants to enroll but you have another one scheduled. Do u just do first come first serve and tell the next parent sorry now im full or do you ask the first parent to wait one more day? I only have three spots so if a mom comes and fills two of them with kids that ate soso im kind of stuck. I dont need a perfect family but i dont need a nightmare parent or child either kwin?
Ok let me see if I can explain this without writing a novel.....

First scenario:
Family #1 interviews on Monday.
Family #2 interviews on Tuesday.

I know ahead of time I have two interviews so telling BOTH families I will call them on Wednesday is doable. Weigh my pros and cons and go with whatever family seems like the best fit. Call them first.

Next scenario:
Family #1 interviews on Monday
Family #2 interviews on Tuesday
Family #3 interviews on Friday (scheduled AFTER family #1 or #2 already enrolled)

I will still call the best fit family between #1 & #2 and offer them the spot.

I will still interview Family #3 and wait 24-48 hours to decide and then I will touch base with them in a day or two.

Meanwhile I decide they (Fam #3) are a better fit than family I already accepted. Depending on whether family I accepted already started or not leads me to next dilemma.

If they started already, then I probably already know if they are working out or not and if any issues I have with them can be changeable or if they aren't going to make it after the two week trial period. Then I will call Family #3 and tell them they can start on xx date AFTER family who didn't make it past trial period is gone.

If family I choose first hasn't started yet, then I tell family #3 that I filled the space but will gladly place them on my wait list and call them first as soon as an opening is available. I stress that this can be any time as you never know what happens. Then if first family doesn't work out, you can fall back on wait list. If first family does work out, then you are still good.

There are always going to be families who seem to be a better fit than another and you can't run your business always thinking that you missed a golden opportunity...you just make due with what you got and go with it.

There are VERY few times I have ever run into an issue where I had to do anything like I just wrote out as filling up all at one time usually only happens when you first start out and once you fill up, you usually only have one or two spaces at a time open.

Families are usually workable or not at all. You will know what the right decision is when the time comes. Use your instincts and listen.

If you take a family that you think will be good and they turn out not to be, then that is what the two week trial period is for.

A so-so family is still workable. Nightmare ones won't make it in no matter how much space you have. So in the scenario you wrote, I might consider telling first mom that I won't be able to give her answer until the end of the week....knowing I have another interview scheduled. If I didn't know at the time another family wanted to interview and enroll, then I would use the heck out of the two week trial period so I knew for sure the family I picked was a good fit.

Does that all make sense? Hope it helps.
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Old 08-17-2012, 11:22 AM
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Yes, that makes a lot of sense. Thank you so much...

So, say a family comes, the visit goes well and they said they have to think about it. Because they usually do when they are about to leave

I tell them something along the lines of,

Thank you for meeting with me. We can both take some time to consider if my program is a good fit for you and your family. I can call you on x day and so we can decide the best decision.

Then when you call, do you just offer them the spot, or do you ask them what they decided? All of this assumes they want the spot. What if they don;t??? My ego has been crushed over the last few interviews, so I'm not sure I have the guts to assume they will want me... And isn't it awkward to offer a spot and they donb't want it?

I'm not trying to be difficult, but I just have phone anxiety already and with the recent enrollment issues I've had I hate putting myself out there.

I've been ending with something along the lines of:
Thank you for meeting with me. I will send you a follow up email with my parent handbook and other important documentation. After reviewing this materials, if you decide this is the right fit for your family, just let me know!

So i send them the material and soemtimes I hear back and sometimes I never hear from them again!!! But I don't think that is working out too well1!!

I'm sorry, I know you are probably smacking yourself in the forehead going what is this girl thinking!!! lol... But I'm really at a loss here. I'm good with kids, but I guess not so good with the business aspect, financial aspect, or talking with parents. I'd much rather just play with the children lol!!! I really can use all the help I can get. And I really appreciate you helping me out.

Thanks again.
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Old 08-17-2012, 11:39 AM
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Well, dcd called. They don't need me for the baby anymore. His motherinlaw is going to care for the baby. I knew it was coming. I should have taken the other four children. I saw the red flags, but I wanted the infant. She was cute as a button. So I lost all the kids. sigh. I did have one more person contact me today. Although I'm a little nervous to interview. I'm afraid I'll mess that one up too. sigh... I know, woe is me, I just feel so down after all of this. I'm sorry....
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Old 08-17-2012, 12:30 PM
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Then when you call, do you just offer them the spot, or do you ask them what they decided? All of this assumes they want the spot. What if they don;t??? My ego has been crushed over the last few interviews, so I'm not sure I have the guts to assume they will want me... And isn't it awkward to offer a spot and they donb't want it?
Yes, I will call the prospective family up and say "The space is available if you are still interested in it." If they say yes, then we make plans to finish all the necessary paperwork and try to get a start date.

If they say they have found other care or don't want the space anymore I will say "Ok no problem, it was very nice meeting you and if you are in need of a care services in the future, please feel free to call me."

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nickel View Post
Well, dcd called. They don't need me for the baby anymore. His motherinlaw is going to care for the baby. I knew it was coming. I should have taken the other four children. I saw the red flags, but I wanted the infant. She was cute as a button. So I lost all the kids. sigh. I did have one more person contact me today. Although I'm a little nervous to interview. I'm afraid I'll mess that one up too. sigh... I know, woe is me, I just feel so down after all of this. I'm sorry....
I am sorry. But that is ok.......keep up the positive attitude and I promise that things will turn around for you. Things have a weird way of working out but you have to keep the faith!

If anything, try to always pick up at least two positives from any experience.

In this case, you ARE getting calls and you are also honing your interviewing experience so it isn't ALL bad.
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Old 08-17-2012, 12:35 PM
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Thanks Blackcat!!! I am honing my interview skills! And yes, I am getting some interest! I'll take the weekend to recoup and lift my spirits and hopefully come Monday I'll find some families! Thanks for the advice and kick in the butt
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Old 08-17-2012, 05:21 PM
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Everything happens for a reason. Maybe they were the wrong family for you. Best wishes to you. Chin up. The right families are out there, they just haven't found you yet.
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