Monday, December 14, 2015

Missed opportunities - Part 1: Landscaping bungle

The past week saw us engage two entities for services that we thought we could try out so as to expand our list of providers for services such as gardening/landscaping and transport. I will write about what could be missed opportunities for both entities that we engaged. I was actually surprised about the second one but will talk about that in another post as the circumstances are quite different and, to me at least, was unexpected for their failure to deliver.

The Clairvoyant and I have been talking about how we could refresh our garden at our home in Antipolo. One part of the garden on the north side of our home was ravaged by the combined shade of our neighbor's trees and the acidic nature of the flowers and leaves of the gigantic fire tree they have on their side of the fence. And then there were several parts where the grass needed to be replenished and some plants replaced. We inquired about landscaping and decided to try out a small outfit care of our suking plant shop at the New Antipolo Public Market. 

We asked them to come by our home to see what we wanted done around our garden. We then asked them for an estimate for what we wanted based on the scope of work we discussed and described with them. We thought we were clear about what we wanted in terms of plants, grass and tree pruning, and where we wanted which plants. Based on our agreed scope of work and budget, the Clairvoyant had drafted a contract (We have learned before that having things written down or printed provides much clarity for later reference in cases of dispute or disagreement.).

Work started quite well and after a few minor glitches (including a snooty neighbor), our landscapers were able to complete their tree trimming work. It all went downhill from there. To cut what could be a long story, they turned in very unusual work hours - arriving late in the morning, taking long lunch breaks and returning around 4 PM, etc. They even tampered with parts of the garden that they weren't supposed to work on, seemingly wanting to impose their style on a landscape that we had done when we moved into our home last year. We finally had enough and had to terminate their services before they could do more damage (and headaches).

This was a prime example of a small operation bungling a chance to have a long term client. We thought before that if they did well, then we would probably have them as our regular landscaper who can do maintenance work on our garden perhaps twice or thrice a year. It would have been nice to have a trusted landscaper in the locality. They probably do good work and they showed promise but then they messed it up and just couldn't deliver. Would they be worth a second chance? Perhaps only time can tell and hopefully, if we do give them a second chance (not in the near future), they would do better, stick to the scope of work and make sure they come and work on time.

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