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UGH! Why is it that horse people have such a hard time calling people back!?

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  • UGH! Why is it that horse people have such a hard time calling people back!?

    I have been trying for almost 3 weeks to find a new barn to start riding at but no one has called me back!! I understand everyone is busy but you would think they would want more business. Should I try emailing them or would this be too nagging? I just wish people would pick up their phones around here!!!

  • #2
    I tend to write off most people who don't return calls -- It seems I write off many more horse people than non-horse people If I'm certain I'm interested in the barn/horse/whatever I'll leave 2-3 messages -- I've found it sometimes helpful to mention who gave me the contact information when I leave a message --
    "I never mind if an adult uses safety stirrups." GM

    Comment


    • #3
      Sometimes our lives get busy, I am on the go all the time and non-stop not just with Barn duties but family life. If I get finished around 9pm. I feel it is to late to start calling people at home. However, you can e-mail at any time of day or night as you are not bothering any-one. Perhaps email is your best route to get an answer IMO. (I don't like to be called after 9.30pm and don't call any-one after that time either)
      If you wish to see what man made take a drive. If you wish to see what god created saddle up your horse.

      Comment


      • #4
        When I found my current trainer, I made phone calls to about 7 people I had in mind to investigate lessons with. None returned my calls. Harumph. I made a second round of calls. Only one returned my second round of calls. One I really wanted to find out more about, so I dropped in on the barn during a private lesson, and sat and waited for her to be done, watching her give the lesson. We had a nice chat, though she looked bored and distracted. I wrote my name and contact information on her whiteboard, and she never called from that contact, either. One other trainer called me from the second round of phone calls. She said this: "Wow, I thought to myself, this girl has called me twice, I better call her back, she must really be serious, she must really want to learn!" She's my trainer, couldn't ask for a better one for me, and we have a great relationship today, and are very responsible with each other's time.

        It occured to me then that possibly barn/trainer people get alot of looky-loo calls and have learned that possibly the ones who are serious will find someway to let that be known so that it is worth their while to call them back. I don't ascribe to that manner of handling people, but one never knows how crazy their day is.

        My point is, just call several times. Either your persistance will convince them, or your persistence will just finally get you through to them. If they don't want your business, they'll let you know.

        Luck.
        Airborne? Oh. Yes, he can take a joke. Once. After that, the joke's on you.

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        • #5
          I'd say try a few times, but if they're really not into returning phone calls, I'd consider it a good indicator of their level of professionalism and look elsewhere.
          ---
          They're small hearts.

          Comment


          • #6
            I can definitely understand how annoying that is! I went "barn-shopping" earlier this year, and it can be frustrating at times.

            But barn managers/owners/trainers are busy people with ridiculous schedules. So keep calling, email (as another poster said, emails can be returned at any hour of the day, you can't call potential clients at 10pm), drop by, be aggressive in your pursuit. I've had trainers who were best contacted by text or email, or who were just flaky and needed me to call to remind them of my schedule changes, etc. That doesn't make them bad trainers in any sense!

            Nine times out of ten, most people aren't ignoring you, they're just busy.
            Proud member of the "I'm In My 20's and Hope to Be a Good Rider Someday" clique

            PONY'TUDE

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            • #7
              Also, I think if it was a barn I wanted to bored at, I would show up if no one answered my queries, yet advertised board. If for no other reason than to find out, in person, how and when to contact them. Oh, BTW, do you have any openings?
              Airborne? Oh. Yes, he can take a joke. Once. After that, the joke's on you.

              Comment


              • #8
                Horse people are not "business people" - it took me a long time to learn that.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Ummm...OP...what are you saying in your message? Could they think you are just a looky loo or a kid who will never show up? Be sure to be very specific..."Hi, my name is Corky Smith and I am interested in taking lessons. Can you call me back at 555-1212 and give me rate information including a school horse." Even better would be "I would like to set up an introductory lesson". That indicates you are serious.

                  The other thing is some of these may not have school horses or public lesson programs so they are not going to respond. Or they are full. It would be polite to return the call anyway but I wouldn't condemn them if they don't-some barns get tons of calls from people they cannot help and there is no way they can get back on all of them.

                  The absolute best way to find a good lesson program with school horses is asking around and then just drop by the barn during normal business hours when they will be teaching. You can watch and they can get some face time with you to know you are serious.
                  When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                  The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by AnotherRound View Post
                    It occured to me then that possibly barn/trainer people get alot of looky-loo calls
                    Ain't that the truth. I feel sorry that my trainer has to deal with all the random messages she gets. Little kids calling about lessons (note to parents: your 8 year old isn't going to be taken seriously), people calling for western lessons when the ad clearly says English, rental horse inquiries, beach riding inquiries, 'I've got a rank horse, can you fix it' inquiries, 'my child is 2 and I want them to ride' inquiries, 'can we come pet the horses' inquiries...the list is endless. She tries to call most back, but a lot of times she just lets the ones that are clearly not calling the right person go (and yes, that even means potential boarders...the barn is owned and run by completely different people with a different business name and different phone number)
                    Last edited by RugBug; Jun. 24, 2009, 06:51 PM.
                    Keith: "Now...let's do something normal fathers and daughters do."
                    Veronica: "Buy me a pony?"

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by RugBug View Post
                      Ain't that the truth. I feel sorry that my trainer has to deal with all the random messages she gets. Little kids calling about lessons (not to parents: your 8 year old isn't going to be taken seriously), people calling for western lessons when the ad clearly says English, rental horse inquiries, beach riding inquiries, 'I've got a rank horse, can you fix it' inquiries, 'my child is 2 and I want them to ride' inquiries, 'can we come pet the horses' inquiries...the list is endless. She tries to call most back, but a lot of times she just let's the ones that are clearly not calling the right person go (and yes, the even means potential boarders...the barn is owned and run by completed different people with a different business name and different phone number)

                      Rug Bug...you forgot the "do you do Birthday parties, Pony Rides, Rent horses for trail riding?". No kidding, guys, you should hear the calls in the voice mail.
                      When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                      The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Due to moving horses for school, I've done this more times than I'd like to recall. Everyone gets one initial phone call. After that, I stop by (unless the place is gated and I can't get in). If I find someone to talk to, I ask if someone is free or if they would prefer for me to schedule an appointment for a tour and discussion. I also stop by all local tack shops and ask for recommendations. If you can't get a hold of someone- the local tack shop usually knows why, i.e. away at a show, dropped her cell in a water bucket, just sucks at returning calls, wouldn't be a good fit for you anyway...

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Things are much slower now for my trainer but back when I first started riding with her she told us to call, call, and call again. She went to bed VERY early and woke up VERY early. Neither of those extremes were prime phone call returning times as she had horses to take care of, horses to train, and lessons to teach immediately after (big program back then).

                          Her kids were young and her husband also very busy. None of them were good at giving her messages so she always said "leave one if you like but you better call back because chances are I won't get it" She finally got an answering machine. All has been right ever since She will call you back - you just have to give her a couple days especially if it's show season.

                          That said, I met up with her face to face. She was giving lessons at the barn where I was boarding. I was having issues with my horse, she watched me ride while she was teaching a fellow boarder, asked to hop on when she was done teaching - the rest is history. Had we not been face to face back then, I don't think I would've started riding with her - that was about 15 years ago. She did a lot of her business face to face. The phone was just too complicated. Heck, she only got into the cell world within the last 5 or so years, emailing in the last couple, and started texting in the last few months She just didn't have the time for that stuff. It's nice having a smaller group of people - she's much more available for social time

                          I say, if you've made 3 calls and are really wanting to be at this particular barn, then go in person and ask to speak to the person who can help you. Be prepared to wait for a break in lessons or whatever else might be going on that day. Be patient, courteous, and show them you are serious. If that doesn't work then forget that place - they obviously don't want your business. Being there in person will help you get an idea of how they do things, just how busy they are, how they treat their clients etc. You will know if it's an evironment you'd be happy with or not.

                          Good luck!
                          Lord Stanely, Lord Stanley - come back to Pittsburgh!!!
                          http://www.chronicleofmyhorse.com/profile/2_tbs
                          *** I LOVE PUIKA FAN CLUB***

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I run a barn and teach I do it ALL, stalls, feeding, riding, teaching etc so I am MORE THAN busy. Yet I ALWAYS find time to return calls and try had for it to be the same day. I am very frustrated with people who do not return calls jsut went thru that trying to buy a pony. However, from my side of the fence I get frustrated with people that jsut show up, wanting to talk to you about lessons, horses etc when I am IN THE MIDDLE of somethign else. The other day I had someone show up wanting to talk about lessons. Well, I was TEACHING a lesson and had jsut started. I went over, asked her how I could help her. She was very "nebulous" about the situation so asked her if she could BRIEFLY tell me what the sitaution was, when I got this LONG STORY about her daughter whow as in college having bought a horse off of Craigslist and wanting to show and "learn english"... etc. they would have to haul in for lessons BUT didn't have a trailer, etc. So I said "I am sorry right now I am in the middle of a lesson, but I am happy for you to call me later, visit my website, send me an email or stop by at a time I am available. Since I was in the middle of the ring teaching I had no way to write down her contact info. She sort of walked off very "humpf" like, and I kind of hollered, "Look forward to talking to you about it" and never heard anything else. Of course they sounded like they didn't have a CLUE and I would have helped them, but also may not have been the best situation. Have had plenty of others that take up my time telling me life stories etc, and how they want to do this and that (one who wanted to show at the DUke Childrens Classis over 3' but had a super green 4 yr old that hadn't even egun jumping yet, the more she told me, the more I realized this WASN'T going to be a horse to do that type of show with!). And then after listening and talking for an hour or more, they jsut poof, disappear and never call or come back. It is a COLLOSAL waste of my time! So people also need to be realistic about how much time a potential instructor can take if they are tire kicking! Sorry, off my soapbox now!
                            www.shawneeacres.net

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I can't tell you how many students I've gotten over the years who have said, "THANK YOU for calling me back! You were the first, and the only to do so!" So, to those trainers who don't return phone calls? I thank you very much for all the business!

                              I've done the same thing though, made calls to trainers with whom I'd like to have some lessons, and have ridden with the ones who called me back. Never once have regretted it. The ones who make those calls prove to be the most worthwhile and trustworthy, IMPO.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Well I thought like you before---

                                Before i knew how much my trainer does. She coaches for 80 + horses and if she had the time to gab she would not be who she is.

                                Now I am not saying you want to be gabby and social. But the good trainers don't have alot of time.
                                YOu will get more of an idea from watching the lessons or watching them at a show.

                                I admire my trainer and now if she calls me I think oh crap I don't ride good enough she is finally kicking me out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                Don't rush to conclusions they are soo busy.
                                When I am at a show , typically she has 15 - 25 students
                                When she works with you ---- you are it and no one else.
                                So if you want a receptionist you won't find it at the good barns!!!!!!!

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by sweetpea View Post
                                  So if you want a receptionist you won't find it at the good barns!!!!!!!
                                  Umm, no, that's not true. Many of the real serious show barns with good teaching programs have somebody to do the bookeeping, schedualing, billing AND return calls. But they don't return those that are obvioulsy looking for something not offered or that leave incomplete information or that, frankly, they can't figure out what they are asking.
                                  When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                                  The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I ended up taking lessons from the only barn who called me back.

                                    That said, its probably not the BEST way to pick out a barn.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Welcome to the horse world.... now leave a message.


                                      And make sure you call back twice... and maybe leave your number 320493x.

                                      And then when you still don't get a call back... have your trainer call, bc they'll get them to pick up on the first ring. GO FIGURE.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Tini Sea Soldier View Post
                                        Welcome to the horse world.... now leave a message.


                                        And make sure you call back twice... and maybe leave your number 320493x.

                                        And then when you still don't get a call back... have your trainer call, bc they'll get them to pick up on the first ring. GO FIGURE.
                                        TSS, OP is loking for a barn to ride at, does not have a horse from what I can tell. Just looking for lessons on somebody else's. The number of barns offering quality programs with school horses goes down more and more every year. Possibility the barns she has called do not offer what she is looking for.

                                        My barn does return calls. Promptly...IF they can help. They do not call back the Birthday Pony requests or anybody looking for rodeo lessons though. Can't believe all 7 barns she has called are running active lesson programs and looking for more clients.
                                        When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                                        The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

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