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“Just two or three people” was a theme for me yesterday.  I found it intriguing that two or three strangers would constantly be a theme for me on a normal Monday.  In a truly random set of circumstances I found myself stopping by three separate Wells Fargo locations yesterday.  I have checking and savings accounts for business, personal and one for a rental house we own in Wells Fargo.  In total we have a total of 10 accounts.  My wife has a couple of her own, in total, Wells Fargo gets a lot of business from us and has a chunk of change.

See below of squiggly for more information on those 2-3 strangers.

It all started Monday morning when I stopped into a Wells Fargo.  I was walking by the branch and remembered I needed cash.  Instead of using the ATM, I decided to go inside to see what they would have to say about Bank Transfer Day.  I filled out my withdrawal slip and proceeded up to the teller window.  The cashier was very friendly and took my withdrawal slip.  While we were making small talk, I casually asked, “So, how many people closed out accounts this weekend?”  

The cashier said, “Oh it was just two or three people.  Not many at all.”  

I said, “Oh, that’s interesting.”  I was in a hurry so I just took my cash and departed the bank.

Monday afternoon, I received a check in the mail.  Mrs. Dogdad and I needed to go to Whole Foods anyway so I stopped by the Wells Fargo branch that is embedded into the store.  While Mrs. Dogdad started shopping, I stopped by to deposit my check.

The teller that helped me has often helped me over the last year.  We always chatted by the economy, how we were grateful to have jobs, just misc. small talk.  While chatting it up, I asked, “So, how many people closed out their accounts here on Saturday? “  

The Teller said, “Just two or three people closed their accounts.  Only two said it was because of Bank Transfer Day.”  

I then told him, “Oh that’s interesting.  You know, you are a nice guy and have helped me a lot.  I am just sick of paying $15-30.00 per month in fees every month.  Because of that, I’m going to close our accounts in the next few weeks and go to a credit union.  I’m just way to busy right now.”  

As if by magic, the small branch manager was next to me.  He asked if everything was ok.  I assured Mr. Branch Manager that everything was fine.  I was just going to close my accounts in the next couple of weeks and move them to a credit union.  He asked me to come over to his desk, while there he said, “So, what seems to be the problem?”

I told Mr. Branch Manager, “I’m sick of paying fees for Wells Fargo to hold onto our money.  I’m also sick of what the big corporate banks are doing.  These banks are taking our bailout money, paying themselves huge bonuses and salaries but not helping the little guys.”

At that point Mr. Branch Manager’s eyes got really wide because he had looked up our accounts.  He promised to personally look at my accounts and call me later today to discuss them.  I asked him to email me because the next few days will be busy.  We will see what they say.

I met Mrs. Dogdad and told her what happened.  She was glad I threatened them to see what they would do.  She has also been supportive of moving our money.  I love her so much.

Monday evening around 5pm Mrs. Dogdad was frantically looking for her passport.  We had just gotten a safety deposit box because our house was broken a couple of weeks ago.  We then remembered, the passports are in the safety deposit box.  I jumped into the car and made a beeline to the larger Well Fargo branches that have safety deposit boxes.  

When I arrived, the person helping us ended up being the same gentleman that helped us get the safety deposit box.  I had shown him a cool heirloom that my grandfather passed down to me when he died.  We joked around while I was getting it and were laughing.  We were having a problem getting the box open so he went to get the Branch Manager.  

I was talking to Mr. Branch Manager2 while I was getting the passport, I casually said, “So, how many people closed their accounts on Saturday?”

Mr. Branch Manager2 said, “Oh, it was just 2 or 3 people.  They had very small amounts of money with us.”

I thought to myself, what does the amounts have to do with it and why are you telling me that?  Are you trying to minimize the impact people with smaller accounts have in my eyes?

I then told Mr. Branch Manager2, “Well, I’m really busy now but I’m going to be closing my accounts in a few weeks and moving them to a local credit union.  I’m sick of all of the fees I have to pay.  It isn’t you guys, you have been helpful.”

Mr. Branch Manager2 kept a friendly smile on his face but his eyes narrowed a bit.  I continued, “Besides, this is the 3rd Wells Fargo I have been in today.  Everyone I spoke to said that only 2-3 people closed their accounts on Saturday.  Did HQ issue send an email to everyone with talking points?

Mr. Branch Manager2, “No, there wasn’t an email….  Is there anything we can do to help?”

I told him, “No, I just don’t like your policies, my wife started a business last year and Wells Fargo wouldn’t give us a loan to help.  We just don’t like having someone hold our money and then not helping us when we need it.  I’ll be back in a few weeks to close out the accounts.

I thanked them again for helping me get into my safety deposit box and then headed back home with passport in hand.  I couldn’t help to think about how “…just 2 or 3 people” was a theme today.

Was there a corporate wide memo with talking points?  I don’t have any proof but it does make me wonder how only “…2 or 3 people” closed their accounts at three different Wells Fargo…

Originally posted to dogdad on Tue Nov 08, 2011 at 06:40 AM PST.

Also republished by Community Spotlight.

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