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premature death of a salesman

doesn't even look like me
for some reason, i've been getting a rash [the metaphor is deliberately chosen] of telephone calls from oddly named agencies interested in hiring me and asking if i'd like to come in for an interview. my reaction, which is becoming less and less cordial the more of these phone calls i get, is to ask if i could have a bit more information, like what the job is, what i'd be doing, where they're located, what kind of experience they're looking for, etc., which i don't think makes me an unreasonable person.

however, i've noticed that this reaction tends to make the callers deeply uncomfortable and they brightly insist that all will be made clear at the interview and that, yes, i certainly have the qualifications that they're looking for. eventually, if i hint that i would at least like to know the nature of the job i'm perfect for, they take a long pause and fess up to who they really are: an insurance company i've never heard of looking for a "recruitment agent" or "upgrade specialist" or "business development associate". when i get that last answer, i ask if what the post is a sales job. yes, it is. invariably. it's a sales job going on visits and getting people to buy insurance, very much like willy loman. and we all know how he ended up.

my first inclination is always to ask why, if these people have found my resume, they think i would be qualified for a sales job. i've never held a sales position in my life. i've not even worked retail for more than a few months. and i'm not asking this for my benefit, but for theirs. after all, it's no skin off my nose if they want to call me and have a five minute conversation that ends with me telling them that i'm not interested, but i would think that employing someone to call dozens of people like me, all woefully unqualified, would be a drain on their resources.

BUY from me baby
then, of course, i tend to get a little annoyed, because dom and i have insurance and lots of people i know have insurance and it dawns on me that our premiums are going to pay someone to call people who have no interest in or talent for the work to try to get them to attend a group interview. and it occurs to me that the reason that they're calling people who aren't qualified is because people who are in sales can earn more at other sales jobs. if they wanted salespeople, they'd be looking for people who had a lot of experience in that area.

often circumstances force us to do work in which we have no meaningful interest and while that can be draining, it's not the end of the world. but i think that even when circumstances do force us into this, we tend to seek out positions at which we have at least some skill, so that we don't end up getting canned a month later when the boss realises that our standard reaction to being told that someone isn't interested in what we're selling is to take them at their word. if i had any talent for sales jobs, believe me, i'd be all over the internet like a horny octopus looking for something that let me flex my persuasion muscles.
this is why you should buy the deluxe package

one particularly chipper caller asked me repeatedly if i had a car i could use for work and, when i said i didn't, she asked if i'd consider buying one for this job. i pointed out that she hadn't [at that point] told me what the job was, to which she responded that all would be made clear if i just let her book an interview. in retrospect, i'm thinking that this might not be about jobs or insurance at all and that montreal is secretly the home of some cult hiding under the guise of an insurance company. because that would make about as much sense as calling people out of the blue to ask if they want to sell insurance. of course, if i thought there was a cult waiting to try to convert me, i'd take the interview.

Comments

ahoythere said…
I think this is actually a scam that has been going around lately......
So don't tell them anything!
flora_mundi said…
It's funny that this actually makes me want to see if I can mess them up by giving them a fake profile. I could mock up a resume for a convicted criminal and then forward a story to the media "such-and-such company hires convicted arsonists to sell you fire insurance"

as long as you're here, why not read more?

jihadvertising?

i keep seeing this ad for tictac candies:



am i the only one who finds the suicide bomber clown at the end a little unnerving? all the nice natural things like the bunny and the [extinct] woolly mammoth and the fruit get devoured by a trying-to-appear-nonthreatening-but-obviously-psychotic clown who then blows himself up. congratulations, tictac, i think this ad has landed you on about a dozen watch lists.

oh and by the way, showing me that your product will somehow cause my stomach to explode in a rainbow of wtf makes me believe that doing consuming tictacs would be a worse dietary decision than the time i ate two raw eggs and a half a bottle of hot sauce on a dare.

mental health mondays :: pop quiz

those of you who are friends of mine on facebook [that might look a little weird to those of you seeing this post on facebook] may have seen my weekly "sunday quiz time", where i just ask random questions in the name of stimulating conversation. after doing that this week, i ended up taking a very wide variety of quizzes on mental floss, which made me a little smug about my knowledge of geography and a little rattled about my knowledge of the finer points of grammar. [i want to say, in my defense, that the one grammar quiz i found was really f**king hard. is that last sentence grammatically correct? i don't know. i have no confidence in my grammar anymore.]

i got so into answering questions about just about anything that i thought it might be fun to apply that format to mental health mondays. i've already done links to quizzes about various mental disorders and how to tell if you have them [i think it turned out i had all of them], but i wanted to do a special set of…

i agree, smedley [or, smokers totally saved our planet in 1983]

so this conversation happened [via text, so i have evidence and possibly so does the canadian government and the nsa].

dom and i were trying to settle our mutual nerves about tomorrow night's conversion screening, remembering that we've made a fine little film that people should see. which is just about exactly what dom had said when i responded thusly:

me :: i agree smedley. [pauses for a moment] did you get that here?

dom :: no?

me :: the aliens who were looking at earth and then decided it wasn't worth bothering with because people smoked even though it was bad for them?
come to think of it, that might mean that smokers prevented an alien invasion in the seventies.

dom :: what ?!?!?

me :: i've had wine and very little food. [pause] but the alien thing was real. [pause.] well, real on tv.

dom :: please eat something.

of course, i was wrong. the ad in question ran in 1983. this is the part where i would triumphantly embed the ad from youtube, except that the governmen…