Author Topic: I cannot give you what you want  (Read 5363 times)

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One Fish, Two Fish

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I cannot give you what you want
« on: April 09, 2013, 11:11:34 PM »
Someone please pass me the spine polish.  I have a difficult person coming in to see me first thing in the morning.  Long story short, she is requesting something that I cannot legally give her.  I've spoken with her about this several times.  She will not take no for an answer, and she is becoming irate.  I have advised my superior of the situation, and superior has my back.  I keep repeating to myself, "I will not JADE."  As silly as it sounds, I feel the need to convince myself that I am not being rude.  Ugh.  Better make it a double helping of spine polish. 
I'll get there.  Eventually.

Bluenomi

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2013, 11:14:43 PM »
Been there, dealt with that, fun isn't it!

You aren't being rude, if you can't legally give it to them and you have said that, then there isn't any more you can do.

P12663

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2013, 11:48:49 PM »
Will she visit you in prison?  Bring you brownies?  Give you a job when you get out?  Be sure to get it in writing!  ;D

On a more serious note:  I once told a person that I would not even consider their request until I had in hand a memo written and signed by them that they had been informed that their request was illegal but were insisting anyway.

Never got said memo.

jedikaiti

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2013, 11:57:28 PM »
Will she visit you in prison?  Bring you brownies?  Give you a job when you get out?  Be sure to get it in writing!  ;D

On a more serious note:  I once told a person that I would not even consider their request until I had in hand a memo written and signed by them that they had been informed that their request was illegal but were insisting anyway.

Never got said memo.

I'd add in a clause for them to pay (in cash, up front) all legal defense fees plus income lost due to resulting unemployability, plus hardship pay for any time spent in jail or under house arrest. <G>
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reflection5

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #4 on: April 10, 2013, 12:02:08 AM »
Quote
She will not take no for an answer,

Yes, she will.  She'll have to. 

mmswm

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #5 on: April 10, 2013, 12:56:12 AM »
I worked in banking, in a department that had the ability to actually adjust transactions on customer accounts.  I truly know what it feels like to have somebody get irate because they want you to do something illegal.  In my case we had management blessing to tell the customer "No, I cannot accommodate this request because it is against the law.  I will have to end this call/ignore any future emails if you persist in asking". After that point, we could bump the customer to our supervisors.

The only thing you can do is keep telling her no.  Is your supervisor of any help?

cicero

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #6 on: April 10, 2013, 03:19:47 AM »
<passing the spine polish>

And put "DO NOT JADE" as your screensaver, or as a note that said person cannot see

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Tia2

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #7 on: April 10, 2013, 05:05:33 AM »
While I would generally agree with the 'do not JADE', in this case with a customer, I think there is nothing wrong in justifying what you are saying.

I know you have already told her this is illegal, but I think I'd keep justifying my refusal by saying 'because it's against the law' to prevent her later saying 'but she didn't tell me' (conveniently forgetting the earlier meetings where you did)

One Fish, Two Fish

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #8 on: April 10, 2013, 06:43:40 AM »
Thank you so much for the emotional back up.
My supervisor will take over for me if necessary, but I really don't want to have to go that route until it is completely needed.  I don't want to use it unless she asks to speak with my superior.  I'm in line for a promotion that could possibly put many more situations like this in my lap.  I want to prove that I am capable of handling them myself.
I have tried to justify my answer to her in the past.  It just seems to give her more wiggle room to ask her request from a slightly different angle.  My only answer to her today will be "What you are asking me for is illegal, and I will not be able to do it."  I have decided that our meeting will not take place in my office (which is private).  I will be speaking to her in a neutral office location with two other people present. 
Usually, I'm a let's figure this out kind of person.  I don't like having to tell people "no."  I've done it before, but people will accept the answer.  I think that's why I'm having such a hard time with this case.  This woman seem to know how to push everyone of my buttons.  I'm proud that I've only ranted about her to one sympathetic coworker. 
I am ready for this meeting to be over.  I'm tired of giving this woman room in my head.
I'll get there.  Eventually.

TootsNYC

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #9 on: April 10, 2013, 08:09:06 AM »
I worked in banking, in a department that had the ability to actually adjust transactions on customer accounts.  I truly know what it feels like to have somebody get irate because they want you to do something illegal.  In my case we had management blessing to tell the customer "No, I cannot accommodate this request because it is against the law.  I will have to end this call/ignore any future emails if you persist in asking". After that point, we could bump the customer to our supervisors.

The only thing you can do is keep telling her no.  Is your supervisor of any help?

In fact, I would REQUIRE this of my people.

I once asked a company for help with their product in a way that revealed I would be using it contrary to their company's official policy (multiple users instead of just one. Their insurance wouldn't cover them if they in any way ever appeared to condone this. The lady said "I'm sorry, I have to end this call." and hung up.

In your case, you can't hang up on her, but you can say, "I'm sorry, you are asking me to do something illegal. I will have to end this conversation."

Be abrupt like that. Make it clear that what she is asking is DANGEROUS TO YOU and you want to DISTANCE YOURSELF.

Be a little offended! This woman wants to hurt you in order to get what she wants. Show that offendedness. It's completely appropriate.

Smart move, meeting in a neutral office.

You can even say something about the other people present: "In front of witnesses, I am saying to you: what you are asking me to do is illegal, and I will not do it. I'm going to end this conversation now."

Act as though the stakes are really high--because they are.



Also, "will not," perhaps, instead of "cannot," to make it moer personal and clearer.

Hmmmmm

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #10 on: April 10, 2013, 09:08:35 AM »
MMSWM and Toots gave good advice.

Just keep repeating:
"What your requesting is illegal."
"You can not demand for me or my company to be party to an illegal act."
"I do not believe we have anything else to discuss. As I said, your request is not legal."
"Please quit asking me to peform an illegal act."

Twik

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #11 on: April 10, 2013, 09:28:32 AM »
Is there some legal counterproposal you can offer her?

For example, if she's trying to get information on someone else's account, perhaps you can say, "It is illegal for me to give you that, because you are not the account holder. However, I could step you through the paperwork to request the information from the account holder, if they're willing to provide it." Sometimes the irresistable force can be diverted into a more productive channel.
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ladyknight1

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #12 on: April 10, 2013, 10:02:31 AM »
I POD Toots.

I work in education and am bound by FERPA, and am faced with similar situations frequently.

reflection5

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #13 on: April 10, 2013, 10:34:42 AM »
Quote
I am saying to you: what you are asking me to do is illegal, and I will not do it. I'm going to end this conversation now."
Yes, saying you have to end the conversation shuts down any further need for a response when she keeps demanding and asking questions. In this case, I don't think you should say "I'm sorry". 

I once shut down a very argumentative, demanding person by saying “I don’t care to continue this conversation”.  The person was baffled and said "No one has ever said that to me" then walked away.
« Last Edit: April 10, 2013, 11:16:26 AM by reflection5 »

Cami

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Re: I cannot give you what you want
« Reply #14 on: April 10, 2013, 11:13:06 AM »
I have to deal with people like that almost daily. What usually works best -- after you've established that they are a SS who thinks the laws don't apply or that if they just find a different way of asking that they can fool you -- is for me to say, "You can keep asking. You can find a million different ways to keep asking. But my answer will never change because it's based upon the law. My answer will always be no. Therefore, I see no point in continuing this conversation."