This is my first post here so please be gentle. It’s pretty lengthy but I hope you enjoy.
As a bit of a backstory, I work for a government department responsible for collecting/chasing overdue taxes, which makes us unpopular to say the least. For an idea of scale, our total FTE is around 4-5 thousand staff. Whilst I could post a wealth of tales from my own experience within this line of work, this one stands out to me as one of the most outlandish.
Every now and then I overhear my colleagues getting into an argument with a caller, and usual etiquette is to ask them if they’re alright following the call. Over time, a recurring name kept on popping up during these conversations, we’ll call him SA for “scumbag accountant”.
By all accounts, SA used to work for our very department many years ago, likely when we still had desk phones all hardwired together. He would know precisely what to say to avoid getting the call terminated (given the nature of our work, we have an extremely liberal termination policy compared to most of the stories I’ve read on here). Whilst I never had the (dis)pleasure of speaking to him directly, however he got through to three of my own team and my manager to spout his spiel. His modus operandi was to pick at the insecurities of the caller, testing their knowledge of the systems and of tax law in general to try and get his own way.
SA reduced one of my colleagues to tears.
SA made one of the calmest guys I know go into a rage.
SA made my cool-as-a-cucumber manager bark down the phone “it’s not surprising no one will help you with how rude you are”.
At this point, SA was an infamous figure within our own subsection of the department, however we still tried to deal with him to the best of our ability. On a one occasion, SA didn’t like what he was told by one of us and screamed “you people and your f**king department are a bunch of c**ts”. Ironically, he didn’t hang that one up correctly and his client picked up the phone as he stormed off, and we were able to resolve the issue there and then, without the interjection of SA himself.
Little did we know, SA had somehow built himself this reputation throughout our entire department of 4-5,000 people AND our operations department of around 8,000 people. Unsurprisingly, this brought the attention of our directorate heads themselves.
Fast-forward about three months, an E-mail pings through to all of us, it was earmarked as internal news for all telephony staff.
I’ll spare the usual corporate jargon and give you the short version:
“Due to repeated infractions against our telephony staff, any calls received from SA or his associated firm, SA accountancy are to be terminated immediately without reason or recourse”
When this came through, I could see colleagues all though the office displaying big cheesy grins, with the occasional “yes” being said under breath. From what we gathered, SA and his firm dealt solely with tax accountancy, and now that they can’t speak to us about their client’s issues, what will become of them?
I really hope he gets to the point that we’re knocking on his door soon.
As a closing point, given that we deal with a vast number of unpleasant callers, I can’t even fathom how one person can anger a gargantuan corporate body comprising of thousands of staff to the point that he is barred from speaking to us indefinitely.