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Submitted by donm on


I have re-read the original email exchange and re-read the follow up where Mark said: "This is someone who asked us to lie for him to allow his firm to save some money.  He was willing to lie, and expected us to know it and essentially repeat it by honoring a discount based on it." (Emphasis added.)

I wholeheartedly disagree with the emphasized statement and its conclusion. The person on the other end is NOT willing to lie about it. Were he willing to lie, he could have and would have just told his people, "Sign up for the course and get the individual discount. Put the charges on your expense report and we'll reimburse you. Do not mention this at the conference, because I've worked out a special deal and no one is supposed to know about it."

Unless the registrations were done as above, then the conclusion that "He was willing to lie" is unwarranted.

A second scenario is possible. It is possible that the person who is emailing is being heavily pressured to get the discount. It is even possible his boss is saying, "I've looked at the website. There's nothing stopping us..." etc. It is quite possible the person in the discussion is the honest person who is getting explicit and direct written confirmation of the MT policy so he can go to his unethical (in this scenario) boss and say, "The only way to get that discount is to be unethical."

I'd surely want to know if my boss is willing to lie to vendors and suppliers, because that tells me I don't want to work for him. The accusation against the individual is unwarranted based on the emails as presented.

KateM's picture
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I don't think we can know that this individual was willing to lie simply because he/she asked, "How would you know if someone lies?"

What if it had been phrased this way:
Please reconsider. What means is there to stop anyone from saying they are not going to be reimbursed by their company but they do on the back-end anyway? You would be charging us the full rate for being honest while rewarding someone who is willing to be deceptive.

I am wondering if there was a significant piece of the email exchange that was omitted from the summary that would change the tone of the conversation.