Finding Freedom

How quickly can a fool find his money again?

I currently have a whole bunch of debt. Hmm...I wonder how much I could get for my kidneys?
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Monday, August 07, 2006
Why What You Do Is Important
When I was particulary down on my luck last year, I worked briefly as a telemarketer, which, and I'm sure you'd all agree with me, has to be in a close race with manure salesman and guy who gets paid to get kicked in the junk all day as worst jobs.

I started that job with the best of intentions. The pay was a base rate (read, minimum wage) plus bonuses for however many people I could get to come to timeshare presentations. If I could get twenty people a week to go, I would get a thousand dollar bonus. However, the company did not like to give too many of these bonuses out, and so they would only let us work, at most, twenty hours a week.

Now, while convincing twenty people in twenty hours might seem reasonable (it's just one an hour, right?), in reality, even if you could get somebody to acquiesce over the phone, the odds of that person really driving out and listening to a presentation were miniscule. You stood a better chance of getting hit by lightning and an asteroid at the same time than getting better than five percent of the people who agreed to go to actually go.

So, at five percent, I would need to get 400 people a week to agree to go just to have a glimmer of hope at that bonus. That works out to twenty an hour, or one every three minutes. When you take into consideration that it takes about ten minutes to read through the spiel and get the information that you need, getting 400 is an impossible task.

When I realized how poorly people were actually showing up, it distressed me greatly, and I realized just how crummy of a job that was.

While this next bit shows my character, at least in this situation, to be not very good, for the last couple of days that I worked there, instead of calling people, I would dial nine of the ten numbers necessary to get a call to go through, and I would then sit there, pretending to wait for someone to pick up so that it would look like I was working.

This is part of how I learned that what you do is important. At least for me, if I don't feel like I'm making some kind of difference in my own life or in the lives of others, I can't stand to work somewhere. Even at my current job, as nice and well paying as it might be, I question the difference that I'm making by issuing invoices. Sure, it has to be done, but what difference does it make?

I justify it by knowing that soon enough, I'll be debt free, and I can then work on whatever the heck that I want.

That day can't come fast enough.
posted by shamedsteven @ 10:41 AM  
  • At 2:50 AM, Blogger freedumb said…

    Oh man...I can't imagine what being on the other end of a telemarketing call is like, but I know I wouldn't want to be there...

    Congrats on making it out alive!!

  • At 12:23 PM, Blogger shamedsteven said…

    Yeah, it's not as glitzy and glamorous as you might think.

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Name: Steven shamedsteven
Home: San Diego
About Me: Well, boys and girls, I, like a whole bunch of other people, made a series of "conscious, deliberate mistakes" and have ended up with a buttload of debt. What is chronicled here are some musings about the journey out.
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