One thing which strikes me since I work in a telephone all day is how rude some people are. My work is to be a telemarketing seller, I think I am quite adept at my work and I can't say I perform worse than anyone else here. Telemarketing is a little about luck, sometimes people never respond, sometimes you never reach the wanted recipient. In any case, one thing which is quite noted in this work is how rude people are when responding to you in the telephone. It's as if they can be a little extra rude because you don't see each other face to face.

While I understand that some people have bad days and some people get constantly called from other telemarketing sellers all the time, imagine to be in my shoes for once! For some reason telemarketing sellers are not seen as people, they are seen as a nuisance. I become happy when people treat me kindly from the other side of the telephone line.

Often people just say "no, no, no" when I present myself and from which company I call from, sometimes people just put on the hook before I am able to finish, sometimes people put on the hook without saying bye. I am quite positive people would not respond like this in other instances, ONLY towards telemarketing people.

Why are we seen as a pest instead of what we are? Young people trying to earn our own money because we fail to get any other type of work because they demand a basic requirement of either a driver's license or some sort of education and/or previous experiences in the working field of choice. Undoubtly, if people were in my shoes, I think they would feel a little more sympathy towards us who can only get such work.

Think like this:
I work the least wanted days during the week; once summer ends we will go back to normal worktime which ranges from 17.00-20.30. The time most people want to be home. Also imagine to constantly meet people like YOU, people who say "no, no, no!" and throw the damn phone on the hooker before you can even finish your sentence, people who don't even try to sound a little nice while they are talking, people who obviously are not listening to what you say, people who can't even arse to say bye once the conversation is over, people who become furious just because you happened to call at all. No, that doesn't sound like such a nice work anymore, does it? Why in the world would someone ever like to work at such places? Like I said before, the reason is that students in particular lack the right education and previous working experience to actually finance themselves with any sort of real work. Do you want to get into a serious company doing anything else but telemarketing, chances are that you or your family must know an employee within that company which can control what people are to be recruited.

Also imagine what I must do every day except having to stand with the obviously rude people. I have to sound nice, I have to sound like I believe in what I do, I have to live with a crap salary far below an acceptable living standard even for a full-time worker because I only work towards a commission based salary, which means I only earn money for each sell I do. Thus, my income can range a lot depending whether it's a good or a bad day. By working here I hope I can get enough money so I can finish my studies without taking loans, and then I can finally search for a DECENT job. I know that my experience is not very different from many other students and young people who fail to get other jobs because of lack of education and previous working experience.

So please, I beg you, next time you hear a telemarketing seller, is it too much to ask to at least sound a little NICE? This is what I have to do all day no matter how bad I feel, no matter how much I want to scream "oh my god shut the fuck up you fucking idiot. Stop act like a selfish bitch". So all I ask, just act a little nice, everyone will win on that, and you can help me to make me feel my work isn't so bad which it actually is.

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Comment by Rosemary LYNDALL WEMM on January 18, 2009 at 12:59am
Another comment on this subject. It occurs to me that the problems you have with social situations and picking up social clues and cues means that telemarketing is about the worst job you could take. It requires a truckload of people skills to make people feel that you are not violating their rights.

Babysitting may not be your thing but don't get in a feminist huff because it was suggested. The person who looked after my son for three months when I was having surgery in another country was an African American male who was taking a break from a highly stressful job in the stock exchange. He was an excellent "babysitter" as well as a highly intelligent human being who did not consider it demeaning to take on child caring work.
Comment by Rosemary LYNDALL WEMM on January 18, 2009 at 12:43am
You have a difficult problem and there is no easy solution.

You need a job so badly that you are prepared to take one which requires that you hurt people. Hurt people tend to hit back so that you get hurt too. That is to be expected. You also have to deal with the fact you may be hurting people who cannot or won't hurt you back. The people you cause to get up painfully from a chair to answer the phone, the mothers whom you interupt while they are trying to prevent their children from harming themselves, the ill people who get out of bed to answer the phone, the shiftworker who you wake up. There are many many reasons why telemarketers are soundly hated.

You really cannot blame people for being rude to you if they believe that were first rude to them.

But if you don't work, you hurt in other ways. If there is truly no other work available then, out of sheer survival, you may realistically have no choice but to do something which hurts others.

You have to decide what the balance of pain is for you and how much you are prepare to hurt others in self-defence.

On a practical note, it may help soften the pain if you apologize to your victims (er, customers) for bothering them. If they feel that you understand that you are annoying them then they may not hit back at you so hard. The very worst thing you can do is to act as if the invective was not deserved.

Be grateful that you are not forced to take a job which removes people from their houses or tows away their cars.
Comment by Dominiq on November 28, 2008 at 6:55pm
I just recently joined Nexus so this post is 2 months late, but here goes...

I come from a place where there are tons of telemarketers (ah outsourcing! oh globalization!), and young college grads eager to land a job could harly resist the lure of call centers. And while I do not have the kind of work experience that you describe here, nor have I been on the receiving end of such calls, I must agree that "rudeness" is uncalled for.

I happen to be one of those shiny happy people, I think it requires little effort to say "no thank you, but please I am not interested in buying anything right now, have a nice day..."

I had also been thinking a lot about whether or not "niceness" and congeniality is a human duty, and while it certainly can't be legislated, I find that it gets me through the day. Of course when provoked, I could always unsheath my claws.

Seriously though, telemarketing is a highly stressful job, so just hang in there.
Comment by LeaT on September 22, 2008 at 12:06pm
I should add, since I can't edit my first post, about the thunderstorm, when I stayed with my relatives when I was young, we didn't even let the cable stay plugged during a thunderstorm! This was before everyone had a cell phone. As soon we even sensed a thunderstorm was coming we removed all cable connections. What would make my relatives and everyone in that little village different from those I called?
Comment by LeaT on September 22, 2008 at 12:02pm
*sigh* I have to explain my position again, I cannot find ANY OTHER JOB. If I could I would and believe me, I try! However, telemarketing companies are the only ones that are available for a student who can't afford to work 8 hours a day because I also have my studies to take care of, and to find a part time job which isn't a telemarketing one is SUPER HARD.

Also, I have NEVER been called by a telemarker. I have my phone number available, it is not like they can't reach me would they like to. Also, as in any profession, there are unserious companies but I always make sure that I am nice when I am in the phone. I expressed that people are rude, even when I try to be nice back. That's a break of social code!

As for babysitting, I couldn't do it. No way I could do it, nor any other jobs which require the empathy to understand the physical needs of others. I just don't understand or am sensitive enough to do such things. Those are the last jobs on the lists I would pick, purely from that reason alone. I would be no good with it. Do you think it is strange you enlisted babysitting coming here to comment in the mindset I am a female? Do you think you would have suggested it to a guy?

Also, there is no Wal Mart in Sweden to clear that out. I left my CVs in the stores equal to Wal Mart, I didn't get the job. I also already told you about that most jobs require either an education or 1 year experience. YES, even at such places.

What I dislike the most is when you keep saying to me, "get something else". I try, I try, and I try even harder. Unfortunately it isn't enough, because those jobs require more than telemarketing ones do.
Comment by Teen Atheist on September 21, 2008 at 6:58am
Found this link from the Atheist Nexus chat room and wanted to share my two cents.

I have to agree with the others on this one -- the only thing more annoying than a telemarketer is a telemarketer who whines about the "rudeness" of the people she's intruding on. People aren't rude unless provoked, and an invasion of privacy to attempt to sell you stuff? That counts as provocation. Telemarketing is essentially over-the-phone spam.

Felch got it right: telemarketers are like door-to-door Christians. I'm sure you're aware that those people get the door slammed in their faces often. Imagine you're walking to work, and one of those sidewalk preachers stops you in your tracks, shoving a Bible in your face and insisting to talk to you about the goodness of the Lord. If you try to be nice when you say no, he'll take it as a cue to push a bit harder to eventually get you to say yes. Wouldn't that annoy you? That's why some people feel it necessary to be a bit snippy with telemarketers; it's the only way for you guys to take the hint.

If you don't want to be "treated badly," there are a lot of other jobs to choose from. I'm sure people wouldn't yell at you for babysitting their children, or working at Best Buy or Wal-Mart or 7-11. It takes a special kind of masochism to last in the telemarketing industry, and clearly you haven't got it.

"However, it made me wonder why they picked up the phone in the first place and even had it plugged in if they were so afraid of getting hit by the lightning..."

Perhaps they were willing to take calls if it were an actual emergency. I can't believe you would be upset about people in a thunderstorm who are unable to take the time to talk to you.
Comment by LeaT on August 13, 2008 at 3:46pm
But does it mean you have to treat them badly? Would you in the same situation wanted to be treated badly? I believe in treating people in how you wanted to be treated. I don't want to be treated like a piece of shit just because it's a part of my job. Yes, I understand it can be annoying and all that, but changing my job and find another profession isn't that easy as long I haven't finished my education (neither do I have the time for a full time job until I graduate anyway).

Like I said previously as well, if you want be 100% sure to not make people call you, get a hidden number or at least subscribe to an organization which will prevent telemarketers to call you.

I even had this highly hypocritical incident when I was calling an area where a thunderstorm was going on. A lot of people who answered the phone excused themselves with that there was indeed a thunderstorm, they couldn't talk. However, it made me wonder why they picked up the phone in the first place and even had it plugged in if they were so afraid of getting hit by the lightning...
Comment by LeaT on July 24, 2008 at 1:38pm
And you have to understand that acting mean and rude towards the people just trying to do their jobs can be as hurting as well, as when being told to get another job for instance, or being treated as if you are shit, not human beings (why do you have to call me?!). If you don't want to be called, there are services offered for that too, such as subscribing to certain organizations helping to prevent sellers or make your number hidden.

I also understand some people just won't stop, those telemarketing companies are quite unserious in my eyes, and of course, those are the ones which have damaged the overall telemarketing reputation. But as with everything, there are rotten apples, some more damaging than others. Don't you think having a pedophile teacher tutoring your children is worse than getting called by telemarketers once in a while?

Well, I have never got a selling call for some reason, although I don't keep my telephone number hidden, however, some people have called me in the past for surveys and I have never denied them because I have worked with that too, and I always try to act nice and all that towards them because I KNOW how downletting it is to work with it.

In my experience, it's probably one of the most exposed working situations you can get in. I mean, there are some other jobs, such as maybe guarding people at a psychiatry (some of them can be very mean too, but at least they don't mean it as such) but people often mean what they say to you in a telephone, and it seems because they cannot see how bad you take it, it's ok to keep doing it.

If I can fake sounding happy all day, so can they, quite honestly.
Comment by Matt Sheppard on July 24, 2008 at 12:26pm
you have to understand though, that on the receiving end it can be quite an intrusion to have uninvited callers trying to sell you something when you are in the privacy of your own home.
It actually becomes quite harassing when it happens constantly.
Comment by Calla on July 24, 2008 at 11:42am
I have some random thoughts on this. First of all, I did that myself for a few weeks, and my friend did it for a few months, and yes, it really sucks. I know how crappy it is. Customer service is usually pretty annoying, since, like you said, people don't really consider you a fellow human being.

But, but, but... it does get *very* annoying when, after saying "no, I'm not interested, thanks" in a friendly manner three times, the telemarketer still goes on and on and won't take no for an answer. What is the customer supposed to do? Buy something just to be nice? No way.

And hey, at least you get some valuable working experience, and hopefully will get a slightly better job soon. That's what happened to me and my friend. I fried burgers for a while, some of my other friends have done cleaning, or grocery store cashiering. (All of us students trying to find some part-time work with no previous experience needed.) So... there's other less annoying jobs out there. Just keep looking. Good luck. :)

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