Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Nuisance sales calls

It's a scenario with which I'm sure we're all familiar.

You're sitting down to dinner, discussing your day, work, school etc.

The phone rings.  Glances are exchanged - who's going to get up from their meal and answer it.

You try and sit tight, but the phone's still ringing and it's not going to stop.

It'll be a sales call, you think, but then you've got the nagging doubt that it might be a family member having a crisis, so you put your cutlery down, get up from the table and shuffle through to find the phone.

'Hello?' you say into the receiver, and then you get one of the responses you've grown to despise.

'Mis-sold PPI?  Solar panels?  I'm not trying to sell you anything... Is your PC playing up?  Does your Dyson need a service?'

Now, I'm a woman of infinite patience - actually that's not true, but I'm married and have a child, so I'm fairly patient on a good day - but I could actually scream when faced with these questions.  I don't even own a Dyson!

I've signed up to the Telephone Preference Service, and I tell the sales people this - but I swear I can hear them thinking 'I don't care.  Meals will get cold, you'll miss bits of your favourite TV shows, we'll disrupt you in the shower, we'll call you on your mobile, wherever you are we will ring you because that's our job.'

But I can't be rude to them, even though they drive me mad.  Because ultimately it is their job.  They're trying to pay their bills, feed their kids etc. 

My coping strategy developed over the years is to stop them as soon as I can in their script, tell them very politely that I'm not interested, and to thank them for their call.  Genuinely, that's what I do, and it usually stuns them into silence.

However, I do feel angry about the companies that make huge profits from bullying elderly people into charitable giving.  When one of those call me, I can't promise I shall be so polite!

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