Would you work for no pay? Well so far it looks like I am!
I had been browsing craigslist for the past week or so looking for telecommuting (work from home) job opportunities, thinking that would move me in the direction of ‘financial independence’. For me, a lot of the ‘independence’ in ‘financial independence’ comes from being able to make money from anywhere, so I figured telecommuting pretty much summed that up.
So among several different listings on craigslist for telemarketing jobs from home, I came across this ad:
* We have amazing gifts to give to people for 90 minutes for their time.
** Will Train. Very easy. Good reliable people needed.
*** Easy and pays well. The people we have now are making great money and we need just a few more that we can trust.
**** Can make a career out of this.
***** Have mornings and nights available.
****** Work 6 hours per day and make more than full time.
Must have great speaking voice and have some phone experience. Will Train.
It sounded like a good way to starting actually doing something and bring in some real money.
Boy, I didn’t know what I was getting myself into with telemarketing!
Well I called and apparently the ad had only been up an hour or so and I was the first one to respond. He liked my somewhat English accent and wanted me to come in right away to meet him.
I spent a few hours at their office watching a retired guy with a heavy New York accent work the phones and show me how it was done. Seemed simple enough.
Oh, did I mention it was commission only?
Yep. So whether I put in 10 hours or 100 hours, if I don’t get the folks on the other end of that phone to come in for their free gift, I don’t get a dime!
I was told it was a game of numbers and that if you make enough calls you get ‘laydowns’. In sales a ‘laydown’ is apparently a term used for a customer that is all for it from the word go and you don’t even have to sell them on it. They just lay down and take it, I guess.
So I figured, how hard could it be?
Surely I will get these so called ‘laydowns’ if I just put in enough calls. Well… I’ve been at it for about for about 14 hours, over 3 days, and I don’t have a penny to show for it.
It’s possible that one of my two appointments will turn up and I’ll get paid my $100 commission, but they say that only 1 out of 3 appointments turn up. So the numbers are definitely not in my favor. I also have a few leads on people who want a callback but who knows what will happen with that.
If I were making minimum wage I would have made over $100 by now!
I might not make anything for the 14 hours I’ve put in this far. It almost feels like slave labor, but I did sign up for it so I guess there is a big difference there.
It’s better and worse than I thought it would be:
- It’s better because there are nowhere near as many irate people as I thought there would be. Lots of answering machines. Lots of fax machines. Surprisingly, not very many irate people at all.
- It’s worse because either a ton of people out there are recently deceased, dying, or just found out they have cancer, or the company I am working for has some horribly depressing leads! I guess it’s also possible that some screwed up people out there think it’s funny to say awfully depressing stuff like that to a telemarketer, but I’m pretty sure that’s not the case and that the people saying such things were genuine, unfortunately. Depressing, right?
So far the only good thing about this telemarketing job is that it’s from home.
So that pretty much sums up my un-fulfilling time as telemarketer thus far.
The only reason I haven’t already quit is because… well… to be honest, I haven’t been doing much of anything in the past few years that consists of adhering to any kind of schedule. I haven’t had to do anything that I don’t want to do, when I don’t want to do it in quite some time now.
I don’t think that is all that great for my character. So, in an attempt to build better character, I am forcing myself through this… even with no pay in sight!
We’ll see how long I can keep this up…
Have you ever worked in telemarketing? If so, how did it turn out for you?
Would you ever work for commission only and risk not getting paid at all for your time?
Let me know in the comments below.
To read the follow up to this story and see how it turned out for me, check out this post.
If you’re new here, I highly encourage you to check out my ‘Good Ol’ Welcome Post‘ to get an idea for what my blog is all about.
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