Actually we should feel sorry for them. “They´re just doing their jobs, aren´t they?” It is obvious that they are not calling us to have a nice little chitchat, but they want to sell!. Still, they are just doing what their boss told them to do …
Try to imagine that YOU are working at a call center and your job is calling people and selling things. However, not many people could imagine to harass their fellows like that.
Maybe it is a question of the individual´s moral, whether to do such a job or not – and if yes, for what money? Call centres worldwide have been established in areas of high unemployment, which guarantees cheap workforce as well as a big choice and substitutability of human resources for the marketing companies.
Being a call center agent who does telemarketing is not easy at all. Could we make an end to telemarketing if there was no-one working for them anymore? What if it became unprofitable for them?
The website Tormenting Telemarketers came up with a nice game you can play on telemarketers in order to waste their working time (author: David Cathey):
Telemarketers take the brute force approach to making sales. If you talk to a whole bunch of people, someone will buy what you are selling.
Waste as much of their time as you can. For each minute that you waste means several potential customers that will not be reached. Make Telemarketing unprofitable. Hanging up only increases the changes for them to make a sale. Don’t let this happen!
Most of the preliminary stuff is done by someone making minimum wage, and reads a script. Let them finish. It’s easy points, and you were watching Star Trek and weren’t using your phone anyway. It’s easy to keep them interested using “attentive grunting”, similar to when your mother calls.
Basic Point System:
For each minute spent on the phone 10 pts.
Getting transfered to someone who makes
more than minimum wage 15 pts
For each minute spent on the phone with
person making more than minimum wage 25 pts
Getting them to repeat part of the “script” 5 pts/each
Getting answers to stupid questions 15 pts/each
Changing the subject 50 pts/each
Making the sales person angry 175 pts
Making the sales person use profanity 750 pts
Get their boss on the phone, and tell them
the salesman used profanity 1500 pts
Getting their 1-800- number 10 pts
Posting their 1-800- number to alt.sex as
a free “Phone Sex” line 50 pts
Checking the number a week later and it is
busy or disconnected 5000 pts
Them: Hi, I’m with Fly-By-Night Carpet Cleaning
and we’re in your area [...] [start clock->]
Them: [...] would like to know it you are interested?
Them: Well, we are currently offering [...]
Them: [...] depending on the size of the rooms.
Me: Well, how much for the whole house?
Them: Let me transfer you to ??> [15 bonus pts!]
Them: How large is your house? [25 pts/min!]
Me: Oh, about 2,000 sqft.
Them: [...] Well, that would be about $xxx
Me: It won’t hurt the floor, will it? [stupid ?]
Them: Oh, no! We use a [...this usually takes some time!...]
and is completely safe.
Me: Even with my pets? [stupid ?]
Them: Oh, yes. The chemicals we use [...]
Me: Do you have to pre-treat, since I have pets?
Them: Yes, and we do that with [...] [repeat!]
Me: But the original offer was for $39.95, does that
include treating for pets?
Me: Well, it is kindof dirty. The guys were over for
the game. Did you see the Cowboys vs. the Rams?
Me: What a game! That last touchdown pass! Wasn’t that
a great play?
Them: Well, back to your house…
Me: Oh yes, what about moving the furniture?
Me: Do you clean furniture, too? Those guys spilled some
beer. Have you smelled old beer on furniture before?
But what a game, eh?! I couldn’t believe that they
couldn’t move the ball in the second quarter…
[...] [subject change]
Them: Ahem… Would you like us to come out? [angry???]
Me: Well, when could you come out?
Them: How about next week?
Me: Hmmm… Morning or afternoon?
Them: Either would be fine.
Me: Do you have anything the week after?
Them: Sure, can I put you down for Tuesday?
[Okay, let's try for those last big bonus points:]
Me: Well, I don’t think it matters, since I have all
hardwood floors here!
We are very keen on hearing about the games you played with your favourite telemarketers. You are welcome to write us about how you got the telemarketers’ hackles up and how many points you made!!!
Enjoy your local telemarketer!