Bad Motives

Several months ago, a friend called me to let me know that she had given my business card to a potential property management client.  Of course I was thrilled.  We are a relatively new company and we really appreciate all the leads we can get.  A few days later she called back to see if the gentleman had contacted me.  I told her that he hadn’t yet.  She then told me that she thought that this person was someone I had worked with before.  When she told me his name my heart sank.  I had worked with the guy and frankly he was not a nice person at all (and his properties weren’t very nice, either).  “Condescendling” is the best word I can think of to describe him.  I then joked with my friend about how it was probably for the best that he hadn’t called back.  But when I got off the phone, I listened to my messages and found that the guy had indeed called only a couple hours previously.

Now I had to call him back.

When I worked with him in the past, I had no choice but to put up with his bad attitude.  Now that I had my own company, I could pick and choose who I worked with.  The problem was, at that particular time, we desperately needed the money.  My husband and I weighed-out the pros and cons and decided that it was best if we didn’t take the account (assuming that he wanted to hire us – – I still hadn’t even talked to him).  We felt good about having made this decision, thinking it was right for us.

If the story ended there, it would have had a happy ending.

Throughout the process of starting and running our own business, we have learned that there are so many things that go into success that have little or nothing at all to do with money.  Choosing to only work with people we like and respect is a big one for us.  But at that time, we let this idea go to our heads and we started feeling very superiuor about it.

“Well, I guess I’d better give him a call and tell him the bad news,” I laughed sarcastically.

“I wish I could see the look on that smug face of his when you tell him we are not interested,” my husband added.

“Me, too,” I said as I dialed his number.  “Wait…let me get out my most condescending voice…”  I then proceeded to imitate the guy perfectly.  I had to cut my comedic act short when I heard the guy pick-up the phone.

We had barely exchanged greetings and his voice was already grating on me.  I wanted to get to my point so I quickly asked if he remembered working with me several years earlier.  There was a brief silence, and then,… “I’ll have to call you back.”


He “dumped” me before I had a chance to “dump” him!  I didn’t even get a chance to say ANYthing!  I was PISSED!  I told my husband what happened and he laughed it off, but I was still angry!  Then, that still small voice said:

“Is this really the way you want to be acting?  You’re in program now.”

It wasn’t a judgemental voice, but a gentle one, pointing our the obvious and reminding me of what I was trying to do by not working with this person in the first place:

…to live a life of sane and happy usefulness.


June 22, 2012 This post was written by Categories: My Battle With Character Defects Tagged with:
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