Obertraun, Austria, at Hallstatt Lake. View of interior of the train station.

Azen wanted to draw some money from the bank to pay his workers. He went to the neighborhood ATM for the purpose.

He wanted to pay each of them $100, and he had 13 workers, so he proceeded to draw $1300. When he started to distribute the cash, he found that he only had enough money to pay $900.

Azen went to the bank to dispute the discrepancy. The bank rep, Liam, refused to acknowledge there was anything wrong at first. Only when Azen managed to get CCTV footage from the store opposite the ATM showing he had indeed visited the ATM that the bank agreed to open the discussion.

“Where’s your receipt?” Liam queried.

Azen rarely asked for receipts, so he did not print the receipt that day.

“So this is your fault. First you can’t prove you drew money from our ATM and now you can’t prove you had indeed withdrawn $1300. For all we know, you could have pressed $900!”

The discussion was going nowhere, so Liam decided to bear the differences.

Interestingly, the same thing happened 1 month later, but this time, Azen had the receipts.

“Yes, you indeed showed you withdrew $1300.” Liam said, “I checked with our systems; instead of pressing one of the ‘Quick Select’ buttons, you chose ‘Enter Other Amount’. Now, you must know that this option increases the chance of errors.”

“But you don’t have $1300 in your quick options.” Azen was quick to point out.

“Don’t be so narrow-minded,” Liam rebutted, “We both know what caused the error.”

With that, Liam sent Azen away.

2 months later, the exact same thing happened again and Azen’s workers were exasperated. And this time around, when the cash was dispensed, there was only $100. Azen immediately went to confront Liam.

“Oh come on!” Liam said with a smile, “Didn’t you check before you withdrew the money?”

“I checked,” Azen waved the $100, “that’s why I’m here.”

“What I meant was, didn’t you check the machine before the money was dispensed? Now that the money has been dispensed, there’s nothing we can do.”

“How the hell am I going to check the money before it was dispensed?”

“Just ask the machine to show that it is going to dispense $1300 to you. In the future, you can use a screenshot of that to prove you had requested for $1300.”

“This is ridiculous!” Each time Azen raised a point, Liam rebutted with an excuse that was beyond comprehension and logic. This continuous shirking of responsibility was getting onto his nerves.

“Come on, look at our team. We employ people with Masters, double degrees, all graduated from prestigious colleges and are scholars. They won’t be wrong!” Liam did not seem to think there was anything wrong with him, his company, or the processes within his company. In fact, if there was anything wrong, it must be the other party.

“Are you saying that just because I’m not as elite as you are, I must be wrong?”

“Let’s not be irrational here, shall we?”


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