You can`t be liked by everyone. The trick is being liked by the people who you want
to like you.
I own my own business, so my hands aren`t as tied as yours are. And the nature of my business—writing and graphic design—affords me the opportunity to vet most painful customers before they even become customers. Guess I`m lucky that way.
But maybe my past-life experience as a collections manager might help here. I found that when "demanding" money from people, the best way to ensure success was to make them want
to comply (in this case by paying me, in your case by accepting your bank`s terms). I wanted them walking away happy
that they had paid me money that previously they refused to part with,
I did this, in large part, by reframing the conversation. Instead of creating an adversarial dynamic of "You must comply with my rules," or a defensive one of "It`s not my fault but you still have to do it this way," I turned it into a case of, "How can I help you succeed?" So first I had to define success—getting me off their back. Then I had to be real nice about the whole thing. No matter how irate or nasty people got with me (and I heard some incredibly nasty remarks), I remained professional, calm and firm.
I never got apologetic, because people took it to mean that I knew I was wrong. I wasn`t wrong! And neither are you. Stand firm, be nice, and identify the best way to solve their problem within the parameters you have to work with.
Some people will never be pleased, but I guarantee you that most will begrudgingly recognize your professionalism and this will inevitably lessen the blow of having to do things "the bank`s way."
Or you could just point them to your boss and say "It`s his fault—sic `em!"
| Notes From the Rodeo
Strategic communications without the selling of souls.