Are We Too Polite?

Are We Too Polite?

Are we too polite?

Some of my regular readers may know we have or had a cleaner. She was great; only came every 2 weeks but did a brilliant job of blitzing the house and it always looked awesome afterwards. She would randomly clean the fridge, make our fresh beds, clean the windows….brilliant.  Sadly she had to leave due to other commitments. I had a mild panic as wanted another sorted prior to Piglet’s birth so I did a bit of digging and we hired another; this time to come every week and mainly focus on the bathrooms and kitchen. It was less time, so less could get done.

Bottom line. I was really disappointed when I came home on Monday and surveyed the work. I was aware we have a big house and 2 hours is not enough for a blitz, fair dos. However, the areas cleaned were done awfully, Bathrooms were dusty, floors half done, food from the night before still under the kitchen table. I was not happy and pretty pissed off considering my almost 39 week pregnant stage. Cue tears. My hubby and Mum agreed not satisfactory and we needed to knock her on the head.

After one week. Messy and a tad awkward.

How though? Make up some bullshit excuse? Bite the bullet and tell the truth. Move away without a trace to avoid confrontation?!

I knew what I needed to do but hubby was not sure. I knew I needed a polite but straight up text saying the standard was simply not good enough. I would have sent this immediately but hubby’s reservations made that message sending get delayed by about two hours.

Why in his opinion could I not just send it??? What should I say instead?

He seemed worried about offending her personally. Going directly to the person instead of through a manager or third party. Why? Why should I lie and not tell the truth? It’s her business and if the standard was awful she needs to know.

Why are we so afraid of complaining? Are we too polite and British? We are PAYING for a service. Hubby was giving me the impression he would be happy for her to come back and have another week’s go. For me there was absolutely no way I was paying someone £11 an hour to do a shoddy job just because he was worried about offending her.

Go to many other countries and complaining is standard and not bothered about. I always remember complaining I didn’t like a meal when on holiday in the States. They brought me out a fresh meal, minus the sauce which I hated. If you don’t ask, you don’t get. You don’t have to be rude and mean; being assertive, polite and knowing what you want works.

So I sent the text. Basically it said thanks for coming but the standard did not meet that of the previous cleaner and I did not want to continue with the arrangement. Apologies. I got a perfectly polite response back and the agreement was terminated. I also felt loads better generally, as it was sorted.

I’m becoming a little less precious about complaining. Sometimes we are just too polite. I niggle and just feel bothered if something isn’t right. I don’t particular like doing it but sometimes it is warranted.

What about you? What would you have done in my shoes?

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10 Comments

  1. September 22, 2016 / 7:35 am

    I wish I was more assertive. I hate confrontation and upsetting people. Soooooo wish I had a cleaner. Hope you get it sorted before Piglet. #coolmumclub
    Mummy Muckups (Anna) recently posted…TOTALLY MY SCENEMy Profile

  2. September 22, 2016 / 9:35 am

    It’s so difficult isn’t it and think nic and I would be the opposite roles, he is far more assertive than I am and more likely to complain… But even he is a wuss about it sometimes. You’re right though and when you’re paying for something you should be happy with the service. As for only 2 hours I am always amazed by the amount of cleaning I can get done in a couple of hours when the kids aren’t around so what was she doing all that time? Xx
    Caroline (Becoming a SAHM) recently posted…Social Awkwardness and the School RunMy Profile

  3. September 22, 2016 / 11:45 am

    In general we are as a country quite reserved about it. Sounds like you did a great job. I hate to hear the other extreme where someone is treated badly and the criticism is made personal. You are right too, it will help her to know. It has been a hard won thing for me too but I am much better at it now. #coolmumclub
    Kirsten Toyne recently posted…How To Trust Yourself As A MotherMy Profile

  4. September 22, 2016 / 12:19 pm

    I completely agree with you and well done for speaking up. I think we are all too worried about offending people that we never say what we truly feel, we never end up getting what we want and we all end up not very happy! I was out in a restaurant a while back with my husband. We ordered our meals and his came out as I was practically finishing and it wasn’t good. I complained (much to my husband’s embarrassment and protests) and we ended up getting his food knocked off the bill. You’re so right – you don’t ask, you don’t get! #CoolMumClub
    Cheryl @ Tea or Wine recently posted…Ain’t That The TruthMy Profile

  5. September 22, 2016 / 2:24 pm

    I always try and say things in the nicest way possible, but I’m assertive about what needs to be said. My hubby is generally more outspoken than me, but if there’s a complaint that needs making, that’s my job! He hates complaining about stuff. #CoolMumCub
    Lucy At Home recently posted…The Day My Twitter World Fell ApartMy Profile

  6. September 22, 2016 / 7:35 pm

    I totally agree with you – we are just too fearful of asserting ourselves and being honest with people. The bottom line is, that if it is done sensitively and not dogmatically then it is always the right thing to do – well done! Alison x #coolmumclub
    Alison (MadHouseMum) recently posted…So Fucking What?My Profile

  7. September 22, 2016 / 8:17 pm

    I’m not really a massive complainer….BUT I have sent two complaint emails this week! I also had a run in with a member of Kwik fit staff today and pulled him up on his inability to be direct and polite about an issue he obviously had with where I had parked my car.

    In my ideal world, we’d all be able to be up front and direct in a polite manner, but I guess we are held back by the fear of causing a scene.

    Sounds like you did the right thing!
    Thanks for linking up to #coolmumclub
    MMT recently posted…#coolmumclub Linky week 38My Profile

  8. September 23, 2016 / 12:39 pm

    I think you did the right think in saying something. You weren’t rude or attacking. You stuck to the facts so there wasn’t anything to argue over. You’re right that we are, Brits especially, so prone to being overly polite at the risk of offending. What it means is that when people do finally say something, they’ve got so worked up they get aggressive or upset. If we just dealt with it upfront then it would get rid of a lot of stress and tension! #CoolMumClub
    Angela Watling recently posted…My first month with a Bullet JournalMy Profile