Wednesday, December 14, 2005

My Kingdom for a Clever Client

Now, I make no claims to frying the big fish in my office. Nevertheless, I am amazed at the clients I sometimes get lumped with. Like my Pro Bono of the Week client, Mr. International Student. He is a friend of the secretary, so I said I would help him out. Having had a chat on the phone, I suggested he come in for a wee visit.

It turns out he had applied on Seek.com.au for an 'accounts receivable' job. He was asked for his bank account details. Did he give them? You bet he did.

Next, along comes an email from a Hotmail address, explaining that 'the way this job works' was that his 'employer' sent him money, which he was to take to Western Union Money Transfer and send to someone else. I had a look at this email - the address? Somewhere in Bulgaria.

Hmmmm. Accounts receivable hey?

Then, he springs the following small fact on me. Oh, today, $1700 turned up in my bank account. What do I do? 'What do you do?' I say. 'Ok, my friend, my advice is the following. Pick up your paperwork. Go home. Print out a transaction history from your internet banking. Go to the ATM. Take out the $500 that was previously in the account before it goes missing. Take your paperwork, including these hilarious emails, and go to the police. By the way, you will probably need a new bank account. Sorry, what was that?? No, you haven't done anything wrong!'

Why do these clients only come in a week before Christmas?

As I was seeing him out, he looked at me sheepishly and said 'What, I don't have to pay?' I looked at him for a bit and said 'Pay for what???'. And off he went.

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