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Working in consumer finance was often a thankless job. My fiduciary obligation was to my employer. However, that obligation could often be fulfilled in ways that also benefitted the customer.

Sometimes the best way to help the customer was through a combination of tough love and encouragement. One such case resulted in me receiving the best thank you letter ever!

Best Thank You Letter Ever!

There have been some 'special cases' during my thirty years in consumer finance. Usually the people involved in those cases demonstrate extraordinary cooperation and desire to resolve their problems. Sue was not one of those cases.

There was a point, however, that she accepted her responsibility to resolve her budget issues, and the world changed for her so quickly that it amazed me!

When 'our business' was completed, I sent her a letter telling her that I was proud of her for such an amazing turn around, and she replied with the best thank you letter ever! Here is what she said:

Hi Tom,

The weeks are slipping away from me and I wanted to tell you how much your letter meant to me. That you have confidence in me and my ability and my intentions is what motivates me to take another step; to move forward rather than retreat. I tried and tried during the days following receipt of your letter to remember any male person in my life who has said, "I am so proud of you," and I couldn't. Not even (my husband). Though I would like to believe that has not affected my decision-making process, I know it is important to recognize that, naturally, it has.

You did not need to become my cheering squad, my mentor, but you did. I suspect there were many losses, many challenges in your own life that you were able to draw upon, that you did not share with me. I hope you take with you from our business relationship that you have changed forever the way I see myself, and, as it goes with mothers and daughters and their daughters, you have changed the way in which generations of women will conduct their financial lives. This alone is monumental. The fundamental lesson I have learned is that, as difficult as it is, if I acknowledge problems and strive for solution, my hard-earned money remains in my control. I deserve to be free of worry and strain. My children deserve a mother not burdened under the tremendous weight of bad debt.

To be free of collections is not synonymous with siding with "evil corporations;" it means to finally, finally accept my strengths and live authentically.

The only sad part to being free of collectors is the necessary and obvious loss of you and your words of encouragement and occasional kick in the ass I received from you along the way.

I will miss you, Tom. Weirdly I will miss you.

And I will never, ever forget you.

Warm regards and best wishes,

Sue

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