Would you say something if a client changed their mind at an event?

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MIXMASTERMACHOM

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When a client changes their mind at an event after things were discussed on how things should go before hand, would you say something or just do things the way they want?

Anybody have this happen to them while doing an event? I ask this question because we did an event where the person who got us to do the event and the one paying us decided while people were eating to have my partner play house music instead of what was discussed before hand. Which was easy listening music so people can hear themselves talk and mingle.

My partner decided to do what she wanted and not have a discussion with her about what was talked about prior to the event. Just do as he was told and get paid. What happened is after they finished eating a lot of people left.

Nobody got up to dance while he played that stuff as they were eating. So how would you have handled that situation?

I don't blame my partner at all. Even though we knew what was going to happen.
 

djcrazychris

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Ofcourse you do exactly what the client wants...however... this is where finesse on the mic comes into play...not only to soothe the crowds initial shock...but also subliminally shift the blame...

As kindly and jovial as can be....I would say something like... " Our host (insert name) has decided that simple old boring dinner music just isnt going to cut it... we came here to party and in that spirit we are going to keep things energetic with some classic house music to get you in the mood for a night filled with dancing and celebration...."

Then ease into the house music with some softer/popular stuff... and work your way into the exact music the client is demanding.. interject her name every few songs so that anyone new to the room or who still doesnt understand will get it.... "Heres another great house tune that (insert clients name) has selected for us... we hope you are enjoying her energy filled selections during your dinner....once again ... dancing will begin shortly...."

cc
 
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ittigger

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When a client changes their mind at an event after things were discussed on how things should go before hand, would you say something or just do things the way they want?

Anybody have this happen to them while doing an event? I ask this question because we did an event where the person who got us to do the event and the one paying us decided while people were eating to have my partner play house music instead of what was discussed before hand. Which was easy listening music so people can hear themselves talk and mingle.

My partner decided to do what she wanted and not have a discussion with her about what was talked about prior to the event. Just do as he was told and get paid. What happened is after they finished eating a lot of people left.

Nobody got up to dance while he played that stuff as they were eating. So how would you have handled that situation?

I don't blame my partner at all. Even though we knew what was going to happen.
I feel this is you talking about an event that you already discussed on here - quite a few times. Please go re-read the responses that have already been posted. In case you forgot about them, here are a few links.

https://ourdjtalk.com/threads/retirement-celebration-on-4-28-18.48325/ - see Post 1

This should be the last event I do before I have the surgery - see Post 1

https://ourdjtalk.com/threads/graduation-celebration-in-baskin-ridge-nj.48326/page-2#post-633564 - see Post 39
For this particular event, you said:
I was told that the guy would be calling us again to do something else and he said he remembered me from the Private Place Lounge.
That was from back in May - has this person called you yet?
 
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Proformance

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Ofcourse you do exactly what the client wants...however... this is where finesse on the mic comes into play...not only to soothe the crowds initial shock...but also subliminally shift the blame...

As kindly and jovial as can be....I would say something like... " Our host (insert name) has decided that simple old boring dinner music just isnt going to cut it... we came here to party and in that spirit we are going to keep things energetic with some classic house music to get you in the mood for a night filled with dancing and celebration...."

Then ease into the house music with some softer/popular stuff... and work your way into the exact music the client is demanding.. interject her name every few songs so that anyone new to the room or who still doesnt understand will get it.... "Heres another great house tune that (insert clients name) has selected for us... we hope you are enjoying her energy filled selections during your dinner....once again ... dancing will begin shortly...."
I would never do this. It's not fooling anyone and what you describe just comes off as offensive. No one signed on to hear the DJ demonstrate his disdain for the host's music preferences.

You're not deflecting anything if you do this. You're actually calling attention to yourself in a very unflattering way.

It's analogous to the DJ who has his girlfriend hangout with him in the booth at a gay nightclub. Just as that visually wreaks of insecurity - these announcements will audibly convey your discomfort with the people you are pretending to serve.
 
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djrox

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crazychris...BOOOOO on your suggestion to pass the buck, a/k/a passively aggressively attribute & assign blame to the host, your client or some/anyone else....DOUBLE BOOOOOOOO!!!!

I find it easier to establish a mutual trust and when, on the VERY RARE circumstance when such a request is made, I consider and discuss and we come to an agreement.

What dramacho is referring to is an uncommon and mostly selfish & disrespectful demand, not a request. Given the source, it may be hypothetical or imaginary.

I happily accept any and all requests.

Regarding demands, my contract provides language and my practices establish mutual respect and trust that pre-empts selfish & disrespectful demands and effectively eliminate them. IN the event such a demand arises, it is handled with respect and honesty.
 

MIXMASTERMACHOM

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Tunes nailed it. Do as you're told at that time. It's their dime. My issue is when it makes the DJ look bad. You will be the one that gets the blame. Even if you try to explain the situation to the guests most will still say it's your fault. Sad but true fact. Not much can be done to not make yourself look bad. As for getting on the mic and trying to make the other person look bad, all that will do is make you look like a tacky DJ.

You can say this is the clients selections and be done with it after that. To add to it, just say I hope you enjoy them or simply ask the crowd are you having a good time.

The thing I was looking to happen was after they have eaten to build up to a packed dance floor with people going crazy. That wasn't going to happen after they finished eating and I knew it. What happened is exactly what I knew was going to happen. A lot of people left and I don't blame them for leaving. It's just that I know somewhere in their minds they said to themselves they wouldn't hire that DJ.
 

Proformance

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You will be the one that gets the blame.
Really?
Who are these DJ Police and why have I not seen them at my gigs?

If "looking bad" is a concern for us - it's because we bring that burden into the room with us. It was not there before we arrived.
If you have this fear it's already with you wherever you go. You will post hypothetically about it online, build whole sections of your contract around it, and bring it up everytime you talk to propects & clients about your "DJ knows best" security blanket.

14 days from now you won't remember who gave you what for Christmas but, you'll remember that dude from 5 years ago who didn't like your variety of dinner music and demanded a change. :)
 
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djcrazychris

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Lolol you dum dums can sit there looking like saps all u want... wollowing in the bad light the client put you in... my way is done with kindness and CLASS and in a flattering way to my client...but lets the guests know what page we are on

Say what you want ...but it works...and the clients who make these bizarre choices in programming are actually looking for attention....they think they are saving their party....and want their guests to know it.

Maybe you guys are so insincere as human beings that you cant pull this off without coming off like passive agressive douchebags....oh wait...who am i talking to...ofcourse you cant....but i work a room like butter....and my silk tongue makes the client the hero...and sets my crowd at ease

We as djs HAVE to build trust with our crowd immedistely.... and an hour or 2 of the wrong genre choice can ruin that... so kindly help everyone to understand... maintain that trust ...all the while flattering your client

cc
 
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Valerie Hicks

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Who ever pays the DJ is the ultimate decision maker, shut up and do your job
Yep, this ^^

My issue is when it makes the DJ look bad. You will be the one that gets the blame. Even if you try to explain the situation to the guests most will still say it's your fault. Sad but true fact. Not much can be done to not make yourself look bad.
then you're doing it wrong. It's your job to fulfill the clients wishes, and it's to your benefit to do it gracefully.
 

Jeff Romard

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When a client changes their mind at an event after things were discussed on how things should go before hand, would you say something or just do things the way they want?
I am 85-90% referral. The reason why I am is because I do what the clients want. Be easy to work with it pays dividends. Be difficult and full of ego they remember that well.

I don't do traditional dinner music as a rule if left up to me I do a wide mix of traditional with 60s to 90s pop. I get tons of compliments on it because I've worked on it for a very long time for sound and flow and mix. That being said I was asked last summer to play all Artie Shaw at dinner. I did it and it went over very well with most of the crowd and most importantly the brides family

Learn to adapt. They want house and you play lots of house use the selections you won't normally play during the down time.
 

Proformance

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Lolol you dum dums can sit there looking like saps all u want... wollowing in the bad light the client put you in... my way is done with kindness and CLASS and in a flattering way to my client...but lets the guests know what page we are on
Chris,
You want us to believe the guests all understand your secret code in the announcements but, your client - the one person who is actually paying attention, will not?

You're a DJ - not Yoda.

Let me add to what Jeff said about referrals and taking care of the client. I've done plenty of events where the client's desire's were not with the mainstream of the room however, what everyone at that event remembers when they leave is that I took care of my client. I know this because people do in fact come up and comment about that. They will say: " [client's] taste isn't exactly mine but, you did a really good job. They're very happy and it was a great event."

What people remember is the level of service provided. If you make yourself the priority, it leaves a bad taste in everyone's mouth and no amount of your 'flavor' can remove it.
 
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djtaso

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Chris,
Let me add to what Jeff said about referrals and taking care of the client. I've done plenty of events where the client's desire's were not with the mainstream of the room however, what everyone at that event remembers when they leave is that I took care of my client. I know this because people do in fact come up and comment about that. They will say: " [client's] taste isn't exactly mine but, you did a really good job. They're very happy and it was a great event."

What people remember is the level of service provided. If you make yourself the priority, it leaves a bad taste in everyone's mouth and no amount of your 'flavor' can remove it.
This is spot on. Each wedding I do is different in it's own way, some heavy on edm, some very traditional, some heavy on hip hop... yet I always book based on referrals and many I speak with appreciate the fact that I focus on the couples visions (even if they didn't particularly care for every aspect of the wedding they attended). They trust that I can take their vision and present it in a way that all would have a good time to.
 

djcrazychris

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Chris,
You want us to believe the guests all understand your secret code in the announcements but, your client - the one person who is actually paying attention, will not?

You're a DJ - not Yoda.

Let me add to what Jeff said about referrals and taking care of the client. I've done plenty of events where the client's desire's were not with the mainstream of the room however, what everyone at that event remembers when they leave is that I took care of my client. I know this because people do in fact come up and comment about that. They will say: " [client's] taste isn't exactly mine but, you did a really good job. They're very happy and it was a great event."

What people remember is the level of service provided. If you make yourself the priority, it leaves a bad taste in everyone's mouth and no amount of your 'flavor' can remove it.
Pro... let me ask you this..... if you took care of that clients needs....and played some offputting wacky innapropriate genre... how did they know it was your clients "taste" and not your own...

What i am trying to express is... i do not do this from a place of malace or disdain of my client....it cant be read into my voice because im being honest with everyone... and im lovingly accepting and celebrating the request of the client....i am saying to the entire crowd... guess what guys... we are gonna go a unique direction... and we are going to have so much fun... we are in this together...and i want you guys to celebrate our hosts desires...

How much better this approach is than simply blasting house music for 2 hours during dinner and cocktail all the while alienating all your crowd who dont quite know whats going on... and even if they love house music can see that something is amiss... and grow to distrust your choices by the minute... and THAT's why they high tail it out of there the minute the dessert hits their belly.... because the dj must be a nut job

And by the way... my method is for EXTREME situations... where the crowd would simply be stuck scratching their heads if no direction were given them... I promise you it works...and i promise you clients like this...in my past....have thanked me...and referred me.... my entire business is built on referrels...ive never paid so much as a dollar for advertising .... i hung out my shingle after taking 7 years off and didnt miss a beat... booked a solid year of gigs for the last 3 quarters of 2018 and have bookings up into the summer as we speak....

Some dj's dont even see the crowd... they dont connect... they dont LOVE or feel they NEED their trust and respect... i am the opposite... at any gig... i want the crowd to feel like we are in this together... to trust that im gonna take care of them... even if the client is trying to put a wedge in that trust...i can create a scenario where we all have fun....and the client is the hero... and the crowd cheers for them during final song... and the tip rolls in

A great dj i am
-yoda
 

djcrazychris

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This is spot on. Each wedding I do is different in it's own way, some heavy on edm, some very traditional, some heavy on hip hop... yet I always book based on referrals and many I speak with appreciate the fact that I focus on the couples visions (even if they didn't particularly care for every aspect of the wedding they attended). They trust that I can take their vision and present it in a way that all would have a good time to.
But Taso... we arent talking about a 50,000 dollar sweet sixteen or a 100,000 wedding where the client has a giant classy vision that works well with the crowd...

We are talking about mixes situation .... a group of people at some sort of potluck dinner...who (even mix could read the room) were in shock over the HIGHLY innapropriate music selection for the occasion...

Like imagine your doing a sweet sixteen... 200 high schoolers in the room.... ready to dance to all the hot new music...however... the grandmother hired you....and guess what....she loves polka....and she wants her granddaughters friends to enjoy the polka music she holds so dear....so she demands polka throughout dinner...as well as the first dance set.... she drops this on you minutes before the begining of dinner

(now i know you will say you have this ironclad contract...etc...etc...etc) but honestly... what do you do in THAT situation to appease the lady who just paid you 5 grand....however has now ambushed you. how does everyone leave happy?

cc
 

Proformance

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Pro... let me ask you this..... if you took care of that clients needs....and played some offputting wacky innapropriate genre... how did they know it was your clients "taste" and not your own...
Because I'm the only stranger in the room. Everyone else is family and friends and they will all know in an instant - if I am blowing off my client.
 
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djrox

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...and the debate rambles on with the submissive jukeboxes arguing which unnecessary submission is best.

If the "doing your job" is nothing more than acting as a sentient jukebox, then you do you boo-boo.

The incessant need to post how to surrender advice is pitiful.
 
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djrox

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Because I'm the only stranger in the room. Everyone else is family and friends and they will all know in an instant if I am blowing off my client.
Extremes, the m.o. of the pointless.

You should be able to have an honest, intelligent conversation with your clients that leads to a result they will appreciate, the guests will enjoy and one you will be able to provide while protecting your professional reputation.

Demand that your mechanic use your expired/used pads instead of new brake pads on your next brake job...I mean you're paying, right?
 
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