I'm (Not) Gonna Be Calling You Soon!

Hexmage-PAHexmage-PA Registered User regular
edited October 2009 in Help / Advice Forum
After looking for a part-time job for a few months I finally landed a position at Dial America, which means I'm going to be a telemarketer. Does anyone have any advice?

Friend Code: 1590-5696-7916
Friend Safari Type: Rock
Hexmage-PA on

Posts

  • WezoinWezoin Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    My advice is keep giving your resume out while you're working there - 99% chance you will hate it, the faster you can find something else the quicker you can escape one of the most miserable professions in existence.

    Other than that, try not to be discouraged when people get mad at you, and accept that they're really mad at your company rather than at you personally.

    Wezoin on
  • DeathwingDeathwing Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Does anyone have any advice?

    Be prepared to take verbal abuse. A lot of abuse.

    My wife actually worked for one of their call centers about 6 years ago, and hated every second of it - all her free time at night was spent sending out resumes and otherwise looking for other work, which thankfully only took a few weeks.

    Deathwing on
    steam_sig.png
  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    This is going to be a great motivator to really work at that job hunt.

    Thanatos on
  • Eat it You Nasty Pig.Eat it You Nasty Pig. tell homeland security 'we are the bomb'Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Just stay professional about it and realize that the near constant abuse doesn't mean you are a bad person.

    It sounds trite when I put it that way, but still.

    Eat it You Nasty Pig. on
    NREqxl5.jpg
  • CorvusCorvus . VancouverRegistered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Hexmage-PA wrote: »
    After looking for a part-time job for a few months I finally landed a position at Dial America, which means I'm going to be a telemarketer. Does anyone have any advice?

    Be prepared to be hung up on. I don't even give telemarketers time to get into their spiel.

    Corvus on
    :so_raven:
  • see317see317 Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Corvus wrote: »
    Hexmage-PA wrote: »
    After looking for a part-time job for a few months I finally landed a position at Dial America, which means I'm going to be a telemarketer. Does anyone have any advice?

    Be prepared to be hung up on. I don't even give telemarketers time to get into their spiel.

    Worse then that are the people who quietly set the phone down and walk away.
    I've heard some call centers don't allow their agents to hang up, and something like that will kill your call stats straight to hell.

    Really, the only advice I can give has already been given. Unless you're one of the sorry souless bastards who enjoys the work (someone's got to ride the low end of the bell curve), keep your resume flowing.
    And if you ever call me during dinner, I will hunt you down.

    see317 on
    Ringo wrote: »
    Well except what see317 said. That guy's always wrong.
  • Rear Admiral ChocoRear Admiral Choco Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Keep sending out resumes, and hope that you get some cool coworkers. If you can talk between calls like we were allowed to (don't know if that's normal or not), your coworkers can really help keep you sane. I loved my boss and coworkers at my call centre job, enough that I felt bad about leaving the job.

    Other than that, keep your chin up. The people you call can get nasty, but it's nothing personal, and there are some who'll be the nicest people to you. They'll help keep you going, as well.

    If you can, doodle while on the job. I drew maps constantly during my shifts.

    Rear Admiral Choco on
    2WJtdLD.png
  • DasUberEdwardDasUberEdward Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Be prepared to hear a lot of very rude things.

    DasUberEdward on
  • PracticalProblemSolverPracticalProblemSolver Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    If you can, doodle while on the job. I drew maps constantly during my shifts.

    Did you map the nearest exit compulsively?

    For the OP: don't take whatever I say to you personally, it's just my life sucks and I get to take it out on you 8-)

    PracticalProblemSolver on
  • DrFrylockDrFrylock Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Wezoin wrote: »
    Other than that, try not to be discouraged when people get mad at you, and accept that they're really mad at your company rather than at you personally.

    That's not strictly true. I, for example, am really mad at both the company AND the telemarketer personally. Why? Because it's a bottom-feeder "job." Actually that's a bad description, because in the world of the sea, bottom-feeders have a purpose, which is to ingest everyone else's shit and turn it into something useful, like Tilapia.

    So I guess my first advice would be "don't." You're telling me that you can't find a job that's similarly lucrative and flexible but doesn't involve you being a blight on the rest of humanity? Aren't there old people in your area that will pay $8 for an hour's worth of lawnmowing? Isn't there a Hot Dog on a Stick at the local mall that needs a new cashier on alternate Sundays? They have the cute rainbow skintight shirts and beanies, so bonus?

    If you intend to go through with this after all, I guess my advice would be: 1) don't get pissy with the customers. Yes, your job sucks, but don't take it out on me. You called me, remember? And 2) Listen to what they're actually saying. I can't tell you how many times a telemarketer has gotten me halfway through signing up for something I didn't want before I was forced to say "You understand that I'm not buying anything at all today, right?"

    Anyway, thank you for reminding me of the downside of capitalism.

    DrFrylock on
    Pheezer wrote: »
    I would strongly recommend reading DrFrylock's post thoroughly and considering all of his points individually.
  • Al_watAl_wat Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Honestly... this is terrible advice as far as performing well at your job. But as far as maintaining your sanity goes; just don't give a shit about the job. I mean its one of the most menial things you can do, calling people and harassing them. You have to kind of zone out and not let it affect you. (this is coming from someone who worked at a collection agency)

    For Gods sake look for another job. Modify your job searching strategy if you aren't having good results (doesn't look like it..)

    Al_wat on
  • WezoinWezoin Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    DrFrylock wrote: »
    Wezoin wrote: »
    Other than that, try not to be discouraged when people get mad at you, and accept that they're really mad at your company rather than at you personally.

    That's not strictly true. I, for example, am really mad at both the company AND the telemarketer personally. Why? Because it's a bottom-feeder "job." Actually that's a bad description, because in the world of the sea, bottom-feeders have a purpose, which is to ingest everyone else's shit and turn it into something useful, like Tilapia.

    So I guess my first advice would be "don't." You're telling me that you can't find a job that's similarly lucrative and flexible but doesn't involve you being a blight on the rest of humanity? Aren't there old people in your area that will pay $8 for an hour's worth of lawnmowing? Isn't there a Hot Dog on a Stick at the local mall that needs a new cashier on alternate Sundays? They have the cute rainbow skintight shirts and beanies, so bonus?

    If you intend to go through with this after all, I guess my advice would be: 1) don't get pissy with the customers. Yes, your job sucks, but don't take it out on me. You called me, remember? And 2) Listen to what they're actually saying. I can't tell you how many times a telemarketer has gotten me halfway through signing up for something I didn't want before I was forced to say "You understand that I'm not buying anything at all today, right?"

    Anyway, thank you for reminding me of the downside of capitalism.

    What I was saying was more a matter of "if you dont do it, somebody else will, and they'll get just as pissed off with that person." Although the best telemarketers as far as I'm concerned are the ones that are polite and start with a "Hello, how are you?" and then ask if you would be interested in _______ so they are straight to the point but polite, so you can say no nicely and be done with it.

    Wezoin on
  • THEPAIN73THEPAIN73 Shiny. Real shiny.Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Hexmage-PA wrote: »
    After looking for a part-time job for a few months I finally landed a position at Dial America, which means I'm going to be a telemarketer. Does anyone have any advice?

    I was called Satan one time for calling on a Sunday by an old lady. :(

    Keep applying at jobs. This won't last long I assure you.

    THEPAIN73 on
    Facebook | Amazon | Twitter | Youtube | PSN: ThePain73 | Steam: ThePain73
    3DS FC: 5343-7720-0490
  • BeastehBeasteh THAT WOULD NOT KILL DRACULARegistered User regular
    edited September 2009
    I worked in telesales for 3 years

    It is the most soul crushingly boring and demeaning occupation I have ever had

    If you want otherwise friendly, normal people to constantly tell you you are a worthless piece of shit because you interrupted their free time, go for it

    Prepare to have people whistle and shriek down the phone instead of hanging up

    oh and 'demand to speak to your manager'

    my advice would be find a new job asap!

    Beasteh on
  • PeregrineFalconPeregrineFalcon Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Make sure your company has the built-in volume limiter for your headset so that you're protected against airhorns/rape whistles/etc blowing in your ear.

    Keep passing out resumes.

    And if it gets bad enough, quit before you say something nasty back to a client or put a gun barrel between your teeth.

    PeregrineFalcon on
    Looking for a DX:HR OnLive code for my kid brother.
    Can trade TF2 items or whatever else you're interested in. PM me.
  • ElinElin Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    I was going to be a telemarketer. I didn't make it through the training. I should have known what was up when the recruiter said "All my best employees are ex-cons. They really know how to get the sale." True story. I was desperate though as I had been downsized almost 6 months prior and my unemployment was getting low.

    Don't pin your hopes on this as a long term job. Some people thrive on it, some can't last a day. You can hope for the former but odds are on the latter. I know right now people have to do what they have to do, but some of those places are extra shady. My advice is going to be to keep on looking, even if you manage to make it through training. It'll be rough in there.

    Elin on
    Switch SW-5832-5050-0149
    PSN Hypacia
    Xbox HypaciaMinnow
    Discord Hypacia#0391
  • blakfeldblakfeld Registered User
    edited September 2009
    Dyscord wrote: »
    Just stay professional about it and realize that the near constant abuse doesn't mean you are a bad person.

    It sounds trite when I put it that way, but still.

    This.

    Seriously, it will get to you.

    When I started my job, and got yelled at every day for some sort of crazy thing I had no control over, it seriously fucked with me for a few weeks.

    blakfeld on
  • DoctorstrongbadDoctorstrongbad Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    I tried that job once. They had this thing about " never hanging up the phone. " People would scream and yell into the phone and there is nothing you can do.

    Doctorstrongbad on
  • ChillyWillyChillyWilly Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    I've worked at BlueCross BlueShield of TN for about a year doing customer service and while I'm sure telemarketer work is quite different since the people you're talking to don't already own your product (and probably don't want it), what everyone has been saying is pretty much true.

    Get ready to have your ears ground into dust by people that hate you and everything you stand for. If your employer allows (they probably won't), just hang up on these people as soon as possible. You will get nowhere with them. They would kill you if they could.

    Go into every call with the mindset that these people aren't going to want to hear anything that comes out of your mouth. You hear me? Nothing. That way, you'll never be caught off guard by someone's anger.

    Realize that customer service, like many entry and low level positions, is an entirely thankless job, both from the people you call and the people that supervise you. Expect no one to congratulate you on your hard work, no matter how much time and effort you may put into this job. It very likely will not happen.

    Last but not least, realize that customer service positions (in general) blow. You are the first line of defense with customers, whether they are happy or upset. In their mind, you are the company and you have to fix their problem. Some days suck, some don't, but it is generally not the happiest job in the world.

    I don't mind my job very much because I'm pretty good at it and I have co-workers that I get along with very well. There's also the promise of moving up in the company in the years to come. I don't know what kind of opportunities you have, but I'm assuming that since it's a call center, there won't be much.

    Only work there are long as you have to. Get out ASAP.

    ChillyWilly on
    PAFC Top 10 Finisher in Seasons 1 and 3. 2nd in Seasons 4 and 5. Final 4 in Season 6.
  • BackstopBackstop Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    As far as I know Dialamerica contracts call services out for other people. One call you may be selling magazines, another call you may be pushing roofing services. There's not going to be much upward mobility unless you want to be a call center manager. it's not like say, State Farm where you could get your foot in the door and transfer over to Actuarial or claim-adjusting etc.
    Al_wat wrote: »
    Honestly... this is terrible advice as far as performing well at your job. But as far as maintaining your sanity goes; just don't give a shit about the job. I mean its one of the most menial things you can do, calling people and harassing them. You have to kind of zone out and not let it affect you.

    Seconded. The turnover at these jobs is really high, like every six months or so.

    I've worked in call centers for about ten years now in different capacities. The main thing is to (A) know your stuff (B) disengage your feelings and (C) just do the job.

    (A) is so you are never caught flatfooted by a customer's question. Say you get that person on the line that didn't hang up on you or worse, and they want to hear about your magazine subscriptions or your 4% no-doc loans. The very LAST thing you want to do is be floundering around or putting them on hold to find the answer to their questions. Your customer is now checking out, your supervisor is going to play the call back to you and "coach" you on it, your numbers are going to be screwed up by a long call with no-sale. Have a ready answer to everything.

    (B) is for the other people. The people you are calling may think it's fun to dick around with you, like you're not a person trying to pay bills. They aren't mad at you, they're mad at the phone. The people you work for are (in general) people who were good at your job and know nothing about managing people outside of a spreadsheet. They're not unhappy with you, they're unhappy with the spreadsheet.

    (C) is for your attitude. There will be stupid scripts you have to read, verbatim. There will be stupid questions that you have to ask even though the caller already told you the answer or it's patently ridiculous (Do you have a snowplow on your vehicle - when it's a Smart). There will be things your supervisor wants you to say that are completely stupid and pointless. But spending time trying to game the system and get by without doing it is way more hassle than just doing it. They'll be able to listen to your calls, and probably even watch second-by-second screenshots from the call too so they can see you posting on PA while you're on a call. They'll be able to track your phone system down to the second. Your life will be less hassle if you just play their game, get your paycheck and get out of there at the end of the day.

    And keep looking for that other job so that you're not feeling trapped. A lot of phone agents I work with are constantly depressed about not liking their work but they have nothing else to go to, so they just grind along. Hating their job but not doing anything about it. Any job experience is good job experience on a resume. Also it doesn't hurt to be a good and friendly coworker, bring in donuts once in a while or organize a potluck lunch, help your boss out with contests.

    Backstop on
  • Gilbert0Gilbert0 North of SeattleRegistered User regular
    edited September 2009
    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE, take a breath in the first 10-15 seconds of your script. If I'm going to say no, give me a chance to be polite and move on to another caller and not waste mine and your time.

    Gilbert0 on
  • StormCrow420StormCrow420 Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    I would A) Live at a homeless shelter B) Join the army C) perform sex acts for money or D) move back in with my parents, in that order, before taking this job.

    Trust me man, the $9 an hour you are going to see for this thing is no where near enough compensation for what you will go through. I would seriously starve to death 1st.

    StormCrow420 on
  • Hexmage-PAHexmage-PA Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    DrFrylock wrote: »
    So I guess my first advice would be "don't." You're telling me that you can't find a job that's similarly lucrative and flexible but doesn't involve you being a blight on the rest of humanity? Aren't there old people in your area that will pay $8 for an hour's worth of lawnmowing? Isn't there a Hot Dog on a Stick at the local mall that needs a new cashier on alternate Sundays? They have the cute rainbow skintight shirts and beanies, so bonus?

    I might not be trying hard enough, but I've put in applications at dozens of different places and haven't heard back from any of them. It doesn't help that I'm in a college town.

    Hexmage-PA on
    Friend Code: 1590-5696-7916
    Friend Safari Type: Rock
  • dwwatermelondwwatermelon Registered User
    edited September 2009
    I'm an Army reservist and I volunteered to be deployed to Iraq rather than finish training on a job taking inbound customer service calls for a telecommunications company. Iraq sucked more than I could ever have imagined. I worked for a commander who actively hated my unit in general and me in particular. I worked 12 hour days 7 days a week, and it was hotter than the goddamn fires of hell. And people tried to kill me.

    I still thank God that I didn't have to stay at that job. Do it if it will pay the bills and keep you off the street, but look for something...anything else.

    dwwatermelon on
  • FeralFeral MEMETICHARIZARD interior crocodile alligator ⇔ ǝɹʇɐǝɥʇ ǝᴉʌoɯ ʇǝloɹʌǝɥɔ ɐ ǝʌᴉɹp ᴉRegistered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Hexmage-PA wrote: »
    DrFrylock wrote: »
    So I guess my first advice would be "don't." You're telling me that you can't find a job that's similarly lucrative and flexible but doesn't involve you being a blight on the rest of humanity? Aren't there old people in your area that will pay $8 for an hour's worth of lawnmowing? Isn't there a Hot Dog on a Stick at the local mall that needs a new cashier on alternate Sundays? They have the cute rainbow skintight shirts and beanies, so bonus?

    I might not be trying hard enough, but I've put in applications at dozens of different places and haven't heard back from any of them. It doesn't help that I'm in a college town.

    How many of those places have you called since submitting your applications?

    Feral on
    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.
    the "no true scotch man" fallacy.
  • darkmayodarkmayo Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Hexmage-PA wrote: »
    DrFrylock wrote: »
    So I guess my first advice would be "don't." You're telling me that you can't find a job that's similarly lucrative and flexible but doesn't involve you being a blight on the rest of humanity? Aren't there old people in your area that will pay $8 for an hour's worth of lawnmowing? Isn't there a Hot Dog on a Stick at the local mall that needs a new cashier on alternate Sundays? They have the cute rainbow skintight shirts and beanies, so bonus?

    I might not be trying hard enough, but I've put in applications at dozens of different places and haven't heard back from any of them. It doesn't help that I'm in a college town.

    how many of those places are fast food joints, I would rather work behind a counter than take bullshit abuse from doing a bullshit job.

    darkmayo on
  • Hexmage-PAHexmage-PA Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    I found out that the branch of Dial America where I will be working does not make outgoing calls. Instead I will be a sales representative and process orders from callers. I just finished my third day of training today.

    The weird thing is that the initial interview gave me the impression that I would be making outgoing calls, especially since I had to read from a script during the interview and pretend that I was calling someone. You think they'd make sure the interview was relevant.

    Hopefully now I won't be a blight on humanity.

    Hexmage-PA on
    Friend Code: 1590-5696-7916
    Friend Safari Type: Rock
  • ascannerlightlyascannerlightly Registered User
    edited October 2009
    Hexmage-PA wrote: »
    so far the only iffy thing is that they want you to try and keep a caller from hanging up if they act like they are changing their mind.
    they want you to try and save the sale. why is that "iffy" ?

    ascannerlightly on
    armedroberty.jpg
  • Hexmage-PAHexmage-PA Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Hexmage-PA wrote: »
    so far the only iffy thing is that they want you to try and keep a caller from hanging up if they act like they are changing their mind.
    they want you to try and save the sale. why is that "iffy" ?

    I guess it's not, really.

    Hexmage-PA on
    Friend Code: 1590-5696-7916
    Friend Safari Type: Rock
  • mullymully Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    The words to live by in telemarketing is "kill 'em with kindness!". That is, if you get the chance to speak with them. And keep in mind that they only see you as a phone. Not a person. People like to say rude things to telemarketers, but they're just doing a job they were made to do because they can't find anything else. It happens. Lots of us have been there.

    I was lucky. When I did telemarketing, it was.. specialized. Uniform sales to schools (trying to convince them, it was usually a fun argument), and then doing customer surveys (from the customers of the stores, to determine manager bonuses.)

    Number one tip in a job like that:

    Take notice of the OTHER jobs going on around you. Admin assistants? Typing pool? Anything like that? Learn the skills. Push your resume, say to your boss "I can do THIS and I notice that you have THIS job here! You don't need it right now? You might later! Remember me!"

    mully on
  • BackstopBackstop Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Inbound is not nearly as hard. The customer called YOU so they are clearly interested, you just need to not talk them out of buying.

    A lot of the agents at my work do that unfortunately. They present the payment plan like "it's $X a month BUUUTT you have to put down $Y are you still interested because I would totally understand if you wanted to hang up right now and maybe start a blog about how this downpayment is crazy."

    Backstop on
Sign In or Register to comment.