The Telemarketer

The Telemarketer Audio

The Telemarketer

Since it looks like unemployment is going to run out, I went to Craigslist and looked at some of the wonderful job opportunities:

“ARMED GUARDS NEEDED, must have Valid Guard Card and a Firearm Permit.” Not interested.

“TRAVEL AMERICA AS YOUR OWN BOSS”…Get behind the wheel of a 53 FT DRY WALL FLAT BED TRUCK… DRIVERS WANTED, WILL TRAIN” “Are you man enough to get into trucking” No I’m not.

“GET A JOB TO MAKE MONEY AND MAKE A DIFFERENCE….. Local (Mid-Wilshire)If you are good on the phone: JOIN THE WORLD FUND. We specialize in grassroots campaigns, social change, activism, citizen outreach, environment and nonprofit….” OK… now we’re talking. All the liberal shit I like and it’s local. Telemarketing, what could go wrong and how exciting and worthy. Everyone wants to Save the Sea Turtles or the African Elephant. People really want to get those calls during dinner or at bedtime….. How easy!!!!! Right!!!!

I am here to tell you that telemarketing is one of the three hardest jobs in the world right behind being an oarsman on a Roman Slave Ship and a Sign Spinner on Wilshire Blvd, trying to get you to buy a condominium. Here is a typical day in Telemarketing world. At the WORLD FUND I would work the night shift which was 5 until 9 PM. I was a real glutton for punishment. The shift would start with the shift leader giving you a pep talk about the work you were doing and how worthwhile it was.  We heard about dogs being rescued from puppy mills and dog fighting rings and saving the California Parks. You were totally ready to charge into the world of fund raising after such great motivational material. Let’s hit the phones. One other thing, I was the Knight of the Night Shift, I had won Knight of the Knight Shift from my outstanding fund-raising from last week so for the whole shift I got to wear one of those Viking hats. I just hope the last guy didn’t have lice.

Here’s a little of my spiel. “Hi, is this Mr. Roy Rodger? Wonderful.  My name is Jack Nichol house. Hello Mr. Rodger. I’m calling from the WORLD FUND for our “Save the Sudan Appeal”. Yes, I understand, and I will be brief. Did you know that people are walking over 50 miles just for water in the Sudan? Water is life. To provide this vital source of life The Save Sudan Fund has been digging our own wells to help the local community. These wells aren’t fancy. They don’t cost much by U.S. Standards around $1500)—but they are priceless.”

“Hello, Hello, Mr. Rodger are you still there?” OK, he’s gone. Now Mr. Rodger was very nice. He actually listened to my pitch. Most people are not as nice as Mr. Rodger. Most people are more to the point. I will start the call the same way but here are a series of answers to my call. Hello is this Mr. Allan Avery? Hi, let me introduce myself my name is I am Michael Jor-dan and I am calling from an organization you support the “Save the Sudan Fund”…. (There would be a brief silence and then here are a selection of responses. I have heard every one of these…”Go Away!” “You have called 6 times today!”. “If you ever call me again I will call the FBI!” “Take me off the list.” “I asked the last 6 guys who called to take me off the list!”. “Why am I still on the list?” I always wanted to answer that question with “because there is no list”. Now as you see this is not as easy a job as you think. In fact I use the fake names because it was less depressing to be turned down as Michael Jor-dan than as Jim. However, Mr. Avery was nice also. Here is a small example of a few other responses. “Hello. Is Mr. Gold in? I am calling from a non-profit he supports. …..“No” Then phone slams in my ear. “Never call back loser”, Slam, “Go to hell asshole”, Slam. “Go f— yourself”. Slam. “Double go f— yourself, with whipped cream on top”. Slam. This is only a few of the many positive answers toward fundraising. I was once told by a woman in New York while I was raising money for “Black Lives Matter” and I quote. “I just gave to ‘your kind’ yesterday.” Thank you. We really appreciate your generosity. Then she asks,  “Are you white or black?” I respond that I am white. She yells “No you are not and never call again.” Slam.  I started to take it all personally. If people slammed the phone down on me I would slam it back on them. My very Mr. Positive shift leader got angry at me and told me that I was being watched. One night I received 50 no’s, not interested or stick your head in your ass. And that was only in my first hour of work. Instead of marking “never call” I used the symbol “for very interested call first in the morning and push the credit card”. I really began to lose my mind. My positive shift leader mentioned at warm up about the eye-in-the sky that could monitor your phone calls from a satellite. Just like a drone, killing the Taliban.  I am honest as the day is long. I have always believed honesty is the best policy. Two weeks after being told by my positive shift leader that I was being watched. I was fired. One night on 107 of my 120 calls I had notated “call in a month – on vacation in Brazil and push credit card” instead of no interest, never call again. I didn’t realize it is a complete statistical impossibility that over 90% of the people I called that night were on vacation, let alone in Brazil. I did it because I grew to hate Telemarketing and the Positive Shift Guy, the miserable people we called, I even hated the fucking Sudan. I have some very simple advice, “Never get into telemarketing, unless of course it is an easy sell, like TONER”

4 thoughts on “The Telemarketer”

  1. Worked as a telemarketer myself. I agree it was pure hell. Being called by telemarketers my self now I answer them with a remark my brother uses. After they finish I ask “have you found Jesus yet”. Nine times out of ten they hang up.


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