(Consider yourself duly warned – this is turning out to be a rather long post so either get the beverage of your choice or go to the bathroom now!)
So, yeah. I started this new job on Tuesday and it’s, ummm, interesting? (question mark done on purpose) In a nutshell, it’s a call center for a pet med pharmacy. And we’ve been in training this week – some of it classroom time explaining what the company does and some of it sitting with the reps out on the floor while they are taking calls.
Now, let me preface all my comments with this information: I’ve spent all my adult working life in the financial services sector. I really haven’t been exposed to a true “call center” and certainly not one staffed by temps. So, this has been an interesting voyage for me. When I called about the job, the HR chick told me that she didn’t contact me when I sent my resume in because I was “way overqualified” for it and she wasn’t kidding. Bloody hell, I can teach the stupid training class! However, I am trying not to be a PITA know-it-all and be good and listen and perhaps pick up things I might not have been aware of before. Others in my class, not so much.
The over-riding priority of two women in the class seems to be how to calculate overtime pay. They must have spent quite a few hours either discussing it (both in class and on the floor with the other call center reps) as well as pulling out a calendar and checking what weeks were optimum for getting OT pay. This puzzles me immensely. (IOW, WTF???) While I was chastised by Duty for not accepting those with varying priorities than my own self, I still think it’s probably better to focus on what you need to learn in the class that will help you on the floor. Once you are sure that you can do the job and do it well, THEN worry about OT. Because if you suck, ain’t gonna be no OT no how, babygirl.
Beyond that, those same two women feel compelled to:
1. surf the net while discussing what they sold on Ebay while class was going on
2. put their head down on the table and possibly fall asleep
3. discuss how completely unfair it is that they cannot wear flip flops and tank tops to work in the summer.
Is it me?? Am I the freak that thinks one should at least give the illusion of paying attention in training class AND not whining (out loud, of course. Whining is both allowed and encouraged on a blog) about the restrictions of this job? Granted, both women are young (22 and 24ish) but this is a sad state of affairs. The other women in the class who are my age and older (just two others) are attentive and intelligent. Must be about having a clue or something because the other two in the class (a 24 year old guy and a 22 year old chick who is really the receptionist but needs training to take some calls) are relatively okay. (As an aside, the dude is from Nigeria and had monkeys as pets growing up. They love to joke, will be more loyal to you than a dog and as an added bonus, will not fling poo at you! Fun!)
I find that the day to day politics of any office seem to be similar.
For instance, there’s the new Director of customer support (let’s call him Mr. Kotter, mmmkay?). Mr. Kotter was clearly brought in to get things in order and by God, he’s going to do it. He’s on a mission to prove hisself, got it? So, he’s popular and well-liked already (NOT). We’ll see how long he stays. (Why does this remind me of the zillion and three people who were brought into former place of employ to whip things into shape and ended up leaving when they saw how hellish it was?)
There’s the woman (who really looks like a man, if ya axe me) who monitors the flow of the floor and whips the staff into taking calls and/or making calls. Because we are paying you to work, dammit! Don’t even think about goofing off. Just don’t.
Given what I’ve seen of the calibre of newly hired individuals in training class, I understand the necessity of having someone like this. I just don’t personally need or want it. But whatever.
And then there are the floor grunts. Ah yes. That’s where I shall fit in (or not, depending on whether I decide to continue this adventure for very long). An interesting mix of disgruntled, bored, and inept. Unlike FPOE, however, no one is out and out rude (waves to Hooty). In fact, Mr. Kotter sent one of them home for not being empathetic enough to a caller. Which is odd because this woman is one of the nicest people on the phone. I can’t imagine her arguing with a caller or being less than sweet but whatever. Kotter’s on a mission, remember? And sending her home does what, exactly, to improve her skills? Way to coach a person to success there, Kotter.
Wheee! The adventure continues. Don’t look for me to stay there long but it’s excellent impetus to get my ass moving in the right direction. No falling into a “paycheck of complacency” state at this job, that’s for sure!