Friday, July 29, 2005

Family and BB&T

Nicole and I really enjoy doing our financial business through the Branch Banking and Trust Company. BB&T is a Southern bank, based in nearby North Carolina, and was founded specifically to help the South rebuild after the Late Unpleasantness between North and South. The people there are incredibly friendly and the bank is happy to give regular, ordinary, Joe Six-Pack customers a range of services that normally cost extra at other banks unless you have a "premium" account. For example, I can walk in and ask for a Cashier's Cheque drawn on my account and I will get one, no questions asked (with the proper ID) and no extra charge. Most banks don't give those kinds of services free, and if they do, they put a limit on them-but not BB&T.

We were so impressed with how BB&T has treated us that Nicole decided to put in an application to work as a teller at a nearby branch of the bank. On the application, it asked if you had any relatives who work for BB&T. As it turns out, Nicole has an uncle (by marriage) in Bristol who is a bank manager...for BB&T. Being the honest sort, Nicole admitted this on her application. The thought of her uncle working for the bank never occurred to Nicole when she decided to apply for a job there. Besides, she thought, he's all the way up in Bristol, 80 miles away, and what she does in Knoxville has little bearing on her uncle's job in Bristol at all.

Today we got a call from BB&T. They were "very impressed" with Nicole's resume and her qualifications. They would be interested in hiring her, they said, but they regretted that they cannot. The reason? She has a relative who works for BB&T. Apparently, the bank's policy against hiring relatives of employees is so strict that it even applies to those who would work in different towns in different parts of the state! Needless to say, Nicole was more than a little disappointed. I understand the reason for the policy and it is a logical one, but I fail to see what harm it could have done to hire her. It wasn't like she would have gotten special treatment or been a security risk.

Nonetheless, despite the experience, we aren't turned off of BB&T. We are still happy to bank there...I suppose I have the confidence of knowing my money is really safe.


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