Urban planning community

+ Reply to thread
Results 1 to 18 of 18

Thread: whiney applicants

  1. #1
    Cyburbian hilldweller's avatar
    Registered
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Land of Confusion
    Posts
    3,737

    whiney applicants

    I can't stand whiney applicants/consultants. It seems like they always have an excuse that is completely irrelevant to why they can't meet deadlines or follow the rules. Often they will try to "get political" which usually meaning telling lies to higher ups about a project or staff's position. How do you deal with these individuals?

  2. #2
    Cyburbian smarty's avatar
    Registered
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Bellingham, WA
    Posts
    86
    If the whiners get out of control and say "I'm gonna go talk to the Mayor...."

    Then I respond with "Ok, he's out these doors, up the stairs and the first door you come to, tell him I said 'hello'."

    My biggest pet peeve is planning commissioners that are also architects/developers/engineers. They work for (literally) years on creating a design guideline document, then get all bent when they have to design to it.

    Honestly, one said to me when I called his BS ("Hey, sorry but YOU sat on the commission that developed these guidelines......",

    "Yes, that's true, but this isn't what we on the commission intended to do....."

    "Well, then change it!!!"
    I wonder if birds know it's Tuesday?

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
    Registered
    Aug 2001
    Location
    The Cheese State
    Posts
    9,920
    Quote Originally posted by smarty
    If the whiners get out of control and say "I'm gonna go talk to the Mayor...."
    "We don't have a mayor, dumbass. I report directly to the board and you can complain directly to them whenever you get all of your information together and submitted before the deadlines they set."
    Anyone want to adopt a dog?

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Plus Salmissra's avatar
    Registered
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    4,073
    Quote Originally posted by smarty
    If the whiners get out of control and say "I'm gonna go talk to the Mayor...."

    Then I respond with "Ok, he's out these doors, up the stairs and the first door you come to, tell him I said 'hello'."
    Most applicants shut up when they realize that the "influence" they flaunt really doesn't get them anything. I mean, when you're the planner that made the mayor's brother-in-law comply with submittal deadlines and public notices, someone else saying that "I know the mayor" just doesn't carry any weight. I replied to one applicant with "I know him too, and have met his extended family".

    Anyone ever had an applicant literally break down and cry when you made them stick to the rules/deadlines? Quite frankly, it's embarrassing. But then, if they had met the deadlines the first time, the whole scene could have been avoided!
    "We do not need any other Tutankhamun's tomb with all its treasures. We need context. We need understanding. We need knowledge of historical events to tie them together. We don't know much. Of course we know a lot, but it is context that's missing, not treasures." - Werner Herzog, in Archaeology, March/April 2011

  5. #5
    Cyburbian hilldweller's avatar
    Registered
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Land of Confusion
    Posts
    3,737
    Do clients give their consultants "time bonuses" or something if they get a project approved by a certain date? I always wondered if that's why our applicants can be so pushy about deadlines. Maybe someone from the other side of the fence could fill me in..

  6. #6
    Cyburbian zman's avatar
    Registered
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    9,010
    Blog entries
    2
    Quote Originally posted by Salmissra
    Anyone ever had an applicant literally break down and cry when you made them stick to the rules/deadlines? Quite frankly, it's embarrassing. But then, if they had met the deadlines the first time, the whole scene could have been avoided!
    A planner two cubes over had this over a home day care. I had someone storm out of a meeting so she didn't cry in front of me over a drive-thru coffee shop....
    You get all squeezed up inside/Like the days were carved in stone/You get all wired up inside/And it's bad to be alone

    You can go out, you can take a ride/And when you get out on your own/You get all smoothed out inside/And it's good to be alone
    -Peart

  7. #7
    Cyburbian Plus Salmissra's avatar
    Registered
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    4,073
    Quote Originally posted by hilldweller
    Do clients give their consultants "time bonuses" or something if they get a project approved by a certain date? I always wondered if that's why our applicants can be so pushy about deadlines. Maybe someone from the other side of the fence could fill me in..
    I know they do in TX on major state construction projects! It can be in the millions for finishing early. But in our smaller company, I am unaware of any time bonuses.
    "We do not need any other Tutankhamun's tomb with all its treasures. We need context. We need understanding. We need knowledge of historical events to tie them together. We don't know much. Of course we know a lot, but it is context that's missing, not treasures." - Werner Herzog, in Archaeology, March/April 2011

  8. #8
    Cyburbian smarty's avatar
    Registered
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Bellingham, WA
    Posts
    86
    I almost made, well didn't really MAKE them, but they were on the verge of tears. I/We (the boys in the office) always get a kick out of the 'hotties' that roll in here, acting dumb or playing the 'I didn't know..." bit, or leaning on the front counter with their brand new Victoria Secrets being not so secret. We just use the penguin line from Madagascar......".....just smile and wave boys. Just smile and wave."



    My view on the 'time bonuses' really comes down to billable hours for architects and engineers. I don't know how many times I've called an arch/eng about one project, then they say "Oh, what about this one and this one??" "It's the same as last time, YOU didn't answer the last letter I sent you."

    All I hear is the pen on the paper scribbling "Talked w/City about XXXX project" 1 hr.
    I wonder if birds know it's Tuesday?

  9. #9
    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
    Registered
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Down by Dun Ringill
    Posts
    5,870
    Blog entries
    6
    One time this whiney-a$$ applicant got a dressing-down by the governing body in a public hearing for acting like a total @-hole and being contemptuous of staff (me). About a week later he went to one of the commissioner's office and threatened to sue the county. The commissioner picked up his car keys and told him he would drive him down to the courthouse to file the lawsuit. The guy hemmed and hawed and let it drop.
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

    ~ Otterpop ~

  10. #10
    Cyburbian zman's avatar
    Registered
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    9,010
    Blog entries
    2

    This just in...

    I have an applicant waiting outside the planning office.
    He is waiting for his plat mylars to be signed by the Director, Attested by the clerk, and scanned by IT so that he can take them to the county for recording. Trouble is, the director is in a meeting (for who knows how long...), IT is backed up, and the new Clerk may or may not be allowing applicants to take their plats to the county.

    Also, these signatures may not be ready until tomorrow. But he is insisting upon waiting.

    I guess I am waiting for the whining...
    You get all squeezed up inside/Like the days were carved in stone/You get all wired up inside/And it's bad to be alone

    You can go out, you can take a ride/And when you get out on your own/You get all smoothed out inside/And it's good to be alone
    -Peart

  11. #11
    Cyburbian hilldweller's avatar
    Registered
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Land of Confusion
    Posts
    3,737
    Quote Originally posted by smarty
    I almost made, well didn't really MAKE them, but they were on the verge of tears. I/We (the boys in the office) always get a kick out of the 'hotties' that roll in here, acting dumb or playing the 'I didn't know..." bit, or leaning on the front counter with their brand new Victoria Secrets being not so secret. We just use the penguin line from Madagascar......".....just smile and wave boys. Just smile and wave."
    Man I wish I worked in your office. I tend to deal with hung-over contractors and the few females that come into the office aren't so easy on the eyes.

  12. #12
    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
    Registered
    Feb 1998
    Location
    Greensburg, Kansas
    Posts
    2,947
    My pet peeve is the appllicant who waits for the last minute (or beyond), has some deficiency that stops the project from being on the agenda, then tells the owner/developer that the city "held it up". It happens so often that I believe it is an institutionalized prodedure among the designers. And, as with hilldweller, I would like to know where these "hotties" are hiding out.

  13. #13
    Super Moderator kjel's avatar
    Registered
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Wishing I were in Asia somewhere!
    Posts
    9,659
    Blog entries
    5
    Today was my first day in the county planning office.....

    1. The new computer I was to use today did not have Access installed. Nobody could find the Access CD-Rom to install it. Spent 6 hours filing.

    2. The electricity went out for half an hour in the afternoon. The office is in the basement. Enough said!

    3. Supreme whiney a$$ came in at 4pm and I was treated to a show. Old man comes in upset that neighbors are parking on the driveway access he shares with 5other houses to the state road. The planner tells him that the state determines what is adequate for driveway access and where it is located, the county doesn't have a say. He asks what the building code is for driveway access and the planner tells him building codes are for buildings only. He gets mad and asks her why the hell do we pass all these codes if we won't help him with his problem. The planner tells him perhaps he should get the neighbors together to talk about the parking and he says that he tried that after he called the police on them (lol). He says to the planner that he wants her to fix his problem now and she says go to the highway department and complain to them as they cut his driveway access and if he didn't leave she'd take care of him. He left muttering obscenities.

    Lovely day......
    "He defended the cause of the poor and needy, and so all went well. Is that not what it means to know me?" Jeremiah 22:16

  14. #14
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
    Registered
    Feb 2004
    Location
    on my 15 minute break
    Posts
    17,749
    Quote Originally posted by kjelsadek
    3. Supreme whiney a$$ came in at 4pm and I was treated to a show. Old man comes in upset that neighbors are parking on the driveway access he shares with 5other houses to the state road. The planner tells him that the state determines what is adequate for driveway access and where it is located, the county doesn't have a say. He asks what the building code is for driveway access and the planner tells him building codes are for buildings only. He gets mad and asks her why the hell do we pass all these codes if we won't help him with his problem. The planner tells him perhaps he should get the neighbors together to talk about the parking and he says that he tried that after he called the police on them (lol). He says to the planner that he wants her to fix his problem now and she says go to the highway department and complain to them as they cut his driveway access and if he didn't leave she'd take care of him. He left muttering obscenities.

    Lovely day......
    Welcome to my world.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  15. #15
    Cyburbian natski's avatar
    Registered
    Jun 2005
    Location
    In my own little bubble
    Posts
    2,561
    Although i am a junior in the office, i have had to deal with my fair share of "whiney" applicants. The problem i find is that they complain that we are taking too long to approve their plans- when, after i had to send their plans back to them, due to them not complying with our controls- that they take months to get the plans back to me, but expect them to be approved within days!

    Had many a whinner when on counter duty. Most guys think they can talk me into telling what they want to hear, i think cause i am young and female- but as hard as they try, they dont get anywhere!

    I personally love the calls from consultant planners or lawyers trying to fish for a planner to tell them something they want to hear in regards to a law or a controls. Being in our policy section, means we get these calls, and its a crack up to see the same consultant/lawyer ring each policy staff member to try and get the answer they are looking for!
    "Have you ever wondered if there was more to life, other than being really, really, ridiculously good looking?" Zoolander

  16. #16
    Cyburbian hilldweller's avatar
    Registered
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Land of Confusion
    Posts
    3,737
    Quote Originally posted by natski
    I personally love the calls from consultant planners or lawyers trying to fish for a planner to tell them something they want to hear in regards to a law or a controls. Being in our policy section, means we get these calls, and its a crack up to see the same consultant/lawyer ring each policy staff member to try and get the answer they are looking for!
    Ah yes- "planner shopping"- the most debased form of applicant conduct. This is when they fish for "well he/she said I could do it", as if the words of a lowly planner trump what the zoning code says.

  17. #17
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Townville
    Posts
    1,047
    just one day i am going to start a thread "obstructionist planners".....and see what happens

  18. #18
    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
    Registered
    May 2003
    Location
    Staff meeting
    Posts
    8,165
    Quote Originally posted by gkmo62u
    just one day i am going to start a thread "obstructionist planners".....and see what happens
    And that would be a very lengthy thread. I personally know of one municipality that was too heavy-hannded in their development review.
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    Let's not be didactic in this profession, because that is a path to disillusion and irrelevancy.

    Six seasons and a movie!

+ Reply to thread

More at Cyburbia

  1. School: CUNY/Hunter Hunter MUP Applicants
    Student Commons
    Replies: 9
    Last post: 03 Apr 2013, 11:13 PM
  2. MLA applicants
    Student Commons
    Replies: 4
    Last post: 20 Oct 2008, 4:23 PM
  3. Local applicants only
    Career Development and Advice
    Replies: 9
    Last post: 02 Feb 2007, 10:00 AM
  4. International applicants to CIP
    Make No Small Plans
    Replies: 1
    Last post: 15 Sep 2006, 8:45 PM
  5. MIT applicants!
    Student Commons
    Replies: 2
    Last post: 03 Jan 2006, 11:58 AM