How to Handle the Requests and the Refusals in Iran

  September 02, 2021   Read time 1 min
How to Handle the Requests and the Refusals in Iran
Not every country in the world has the same rules for handling the requests and refusals. These things are pursued through

Reza receives a telephone call from his former colleague and family friend Abbas, asking if he knows of a bank where he can borrow five million tumans (approximately $5,260 [£3,450] at June 2009 rates) for a month. Reza says he can spare a million tuman ($912/£600) for a month, if this would help. Abbas politely thanks him anyway and hangs up. While in many countries this might seem like Abbas was looking for information, in Iran Abbas’s question could also be understood as an indirect request for a loan. Why did Abbas make the request indirectly?

Because if he asked directly, and Reza either didn’t have that amount of money or was unwilling to lend it, both of them would lose face, which might reflect adversely on their ongoing relationship. On the other hand, if Reza were in a position to help Abbas out, he would make an offer of a loan, thereby showing his cordiality and strengthening their ties of friendship. The moral of this interaction is: Don’t ask for something directly if you can do so indirectly.

If you have to make a request, explain your need without focusing on how the other person can help you. For example, if you are looking to rent a flat, explain how you’ve talked to several rental agents and looked at a number of properties without success. If the other person can help, he will make the offer. If a friend confides her problems to you, you can offer to help or make a general comment as a default refusal: “I hope it gets sorted out eventually.” In the unlikely possibility that you are asked for something directly. find a reason beyond your control for refusing, against which nobody can argue (e.g., you car’s not running right or the baby is sick), unless, of course, you are in a position to help.

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