Misplaced trust or utter foolishness?

“Are you absolutely sure?” the General Manager asked.

The Security Chief replied, “Sir, we have irrefutable proof that, whenever your driver refuels your car at the petrol pump where our company has an account, the voucher is made for about 10 litres more than the actual amount filled. We have collected evidence over the last month. Would you like to read the report?”

“Are all the drivers doing this?” the GM asked.

“Sir, we have kept a close watch on all the drivers. We are quite certain that none of the other drivers are doing this,” the Security Chief replied.

The GM was stunned. He trusted his driver completely. But he knew the Security Chief, a retired Army Officer, knew his job and would have reported any such matter officially only if he was 100% certain.

The GM knew he had to take strong action. At the same time, he did not want to do anything which would offend his driver into resigning. His driver was extremely efficient and well-mannered, and attended to all the GM’s official and family requirements so well that he was indispensable to the GM.

On the spur of the moment, he hit upon a plan of action which would resolve the matter without his driver appearing to be singled out. He directed the Security Chief to immediately issue instructions that, henceforth, a security guard would accompany the company’s drivers whenever any of the company’s cars were taken for refueling.

Two days later, as the GM was being driven home in the evening, his driver said, “Sir, if you do not trust me, please throw me out of my job. But, please do not insult me by sending a security guard with me when I take your car for refueling.”

The next morning, the GM told the Security Chief to add a rider stating that his driver was exempted from the earlier instructions!

This unbelievable incident is absolutely true! A few years later, the GM paid a very heavy price for ‘trusting’ his untrustworthy driver.

Have you come across similar instances of misplaced trust?

10 thoughts on “Misplaced trust or utter foolishness?

  1. Not at all surprised. The drivers have a ‘tie up’ with mechanics too!
    The problem is that we are essentially responsible for creating this VIP (Very Indispensable Person) status for drivers and domestics by putting up with all their malpractices even after they are known They take it for granted that they are ‘approved’!
    You’ve not mentioned what was the price paid for ‘trusting his untrustworthy driver’.

  2. Weird!!! If the GM didn’t want to insult/confront his driver, he shouldn’t have taken the first step at all. Why did he do that? To pacify the Security head? Is this about trust or about not being able to take a strong stand, because you are close to the person? I sense foul somewhere….you know, Bollywood movie type – The driver knew some secret of the GM so the GM didn’t want to alienate the driver and blow up his cover 😛

  3. He he he he 😀 😀 .. That was some guilt trap by the driver. It is quite interesting how that much of a trust was established and why he would go on to break that. The price of learning of course is very expensive but nonetheless it is hard to imagine myself in the situation of the GM and saying NO to the trust established over years!..

    I guess it is quite a subjective world and probably that is why the concept of management keeps reinventing itself so many times 🙂

  4. Dad’s ATM card was used by his Chairman’s Bodygaurd (an ex-army official) to cull out 25K cash on two random days of a week. Dad was not very familiar with ATM cards and had taken this person (who’s been working with him for over 15 years) along when he first operated the ATM machine and used his PIN number in front of him. He was caught through the CCTV footage by the bank when Dad finally realized the withdrawals and informed the bank officials. He lost his job when the Chairman got to know of it through some other employee. It is indeed difficult to decide who to trust and who not to trust.

  5. Unbelievable, really. But if you say it must be true 🙂 What was this GM thinking, really? To issue that order in the first place and then exempt his own driver from it?! The driver of course was way too smart for him. The GM should have confronted the driver right away when he spoke of being insulted etc. But of course, his “personal” interest must have prevented the GM from doing so 🙂 If only we can rise above the immediate personal gain….

  6. I am quite astonished, because trust is one thing this is something different…personally whatevr one does, but professionally, once any suspicion is raised, one has to verify it…

  7. Intelligent driver he made the gm beleive he was trustworthy.. but then it is sad when people take advantage of that ..

    No harm in confronting him directly and maybe he could have pardoned the driver for being an idiot ..but shud not have trusted him like that

    so What happened that the gm had to pay a heavy price…

  8. While I am not with the GM in exempting his driver, I have suffered myself with misplaced trust…I know I need to correct myself and not to get swayed away by the emotional acts..

  9. Pretty weird and foolishness here! The fact that the new rule was issued because of the practice adopted by the GM’s driver and the GM exempted him from following that rule!!

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