bob – the builder (part 3)

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bob – the builder (part 3)

this is part 3 of a live Case Study. click on the picture for the full story bob – the builder is a real, live Case Study. I am recording what does or doesn’t happen so that you can see the thought processes behind an effective collection strategy and how the three principles of effective account collections are applied in real life.

To see all of bob – the builder as it unfolds/unfolded click here.



Part 3

30 January – 12.20pm – email from Bob.

Hi Michael,

I have some good news – I have just received a fax from the National Bank to say that $10,000.00 has been deposited to our account. I will send you an email when it has arrived in the bank account.

30 January – 12.23pm – email from Dave (the debtor)
Thankyou for your email. I had intended to transfer this yesterday. I have just faxed Bob a copy of the EFT remittance advice. Amount transferred today was $10,000.00 as requested.

Further to your suggested payment programme, whilst we will endeavour to adhear to your request we cannot guarantee that we will be able to supply those exact figures each month due to the nature of my industry we often are reliant on payments from others.


Fear of the Unknown was what encouraged Dave to pay. Bob had been very easy to ignore in the past, so Dave was able to get away without doing anything. We expected Bob’s letter (see part 1) to be ignored, and, it was. There was only a very loose ‘threat” and that was only that we’d have to take alternate action if nothing happened.

But then, Bob did take that alternate action. He introduced an unknown factor into play – me. An unknown quantity. My email (see part 2) used a 3-paragraph format.
paragraph 1 – state the facts.
paragraph 2 – say what you want the debtor to do
paragraph 3 – tell the debtor what will happen if he doesn’t do as requested.

No emotion. No nastiness. Just
* this is what happened,
* this is what we want, followed by
* this is what’ll happen if you don’t do what we want.


What now?
I’ll email back to Dave when the funds are cleared to
* acknowledge the payment and that we understand the vagaries of the industry and
* to let him know that we’re not “going away” until all of the debt has been paid.
The good news here is that it does appear that Dave intends to pay; he responded pretty quickly to our very light “threat” to remove our offer to accept monthly payments.

So, dear Reader, I’ll keep you posted as events unfurl.
Until next time.
go to bob – the builder (part 4)

By | 2017-09-20T13:12:33+00:00 February 3rd, 2009|case studies|0 Comments

About the Author:

Have you ever wondered why a client does business with you and then ignores your invoice like they had no intention of paying it in the first place or they treat you like their own personal line of credit, leaving YOU dangling, waiting months for their payment? Unfortunately this situation is all too common and can even be puzzling for the most experienced business owner. If you’ve ever had to handle outstanding accounts or you are just so over non-payers, then we can help. Real-world skills, solutions, tips & strategies to get more accounts paid on time, and, most importantly, how to maintain customer goodwill while keeping YOUR cash flow in the positive. You will find the blog posts helpful but to get real results, contact us by using any of the forms on this site, by email or by phone. I’ve been involved in the management of accounts for over 30 years, heard every excuse in the book, can spot a non-payer at 20 paces. Finance Companies in the 70s (systematic, tough), professional firms in the 80s (no systems, too gentle) and, since then, just about every other sort of business you can think of. I’ve written books on the topic, spoken all over the place about it and the blog in this website is my way of “giving back”. I hope you find it helpful.

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