The Not So Great Wonder of the World

Let me set the scene. Two days ago, I sent off an application for an office admin position in an “advertising sales” office. The following day I received a phone call politely informing me that my application had been successful. Imagine my delirium! That was a very prompt response; this must be a very well run place. And now we find ourselves much more closer to the present.

I arrive at the office where the interview has been arranged fifteen minutes early and approach the reception to alert them of my early arrival. The receptionist looks at me a little confused and tells me that interviews aren’t scheduled for another hour. Not being put out of my stride, I present her the letter that states that my interview should start in roughly ten minutes. She humours me and calls them to corroborate this new evidence to find they have apparently left their phone off the hook.

Things aren’t looking all that promising at this early stage. So I take my seat and wait patiently for any further information. During this torrid time I have to suffer through listening to the receptionist flirt with some guy hanging around the reception area. She asks for a massage and he giggles that she’ll get one later.

What is this place?

Finally somebody comes down to collect the me and two others who have all been scheduled to have an interview at exactly the same time with the same interviewer. So unless this guy is some sort of duplicating superhero, I think they have definitely made a scheduling error. We are led to a tiny office with two desks. A man at one desk very politely welcomes us in, but doesn’t politely turn down the awful R & B, Hip Hop rubbish he has blazing from his laptop. I am handed a form to fill out that looks ominously familiar to something I have witnessed before.

The formality of filling in this form passes quickly and I am left sitting between my two “competitors” in silence. Apart from the “banging” tunes we are being brainwashed with, like I’m sure they do in Guantanamo to disorientate their prisoners. And we sit here for ten minutes twiddling our thumbs before the strange scruffy lady to my left gets called for her interview. A mere 4 minutes and 37 seconds later, the same guy is back calling for me.

Now there are two options. Either the strange lady bombed her interview and it got cut short or I am about to be subjected to a very familiar experience that I suffered in Coventry towards the end of last year. Turns out the latter was more accurate and this was indeed the same pyramid scheme, commission only, direct sales job I have already had two previous interviews for. I declined them twice before, so the outcome is pretty predictable.

The interview starts off with disarming and polite banter as he asks me about my interest in movies and music before moving onto the more meaty topics. He gives me a quick brief of the job and within approximately 30 seconds, my fears are confirmed. This is indeed a direct sales job, which couldn’t have been further from the job listing I actually applied for.

Now obviously, I politely declined from what is now my third time experiencing this Shakespearean tragedy and I now sit here seething in anger and disappointment. The job I applied for sounded like a perfect stopgap job in a very convenient location, so I got very excited at the prospect of getting this position. But not only am I still unemployed, I have had to endure this painful and torrid procedure for the third time.

How can companies keep getting away with posting jobs that they have no interest in filling? Instead, they sucker you into an interview and try to sell you this amazing “opportunity” before you realise what a load of nonsense it is.

Last year I had the same experience, but I actually went to the second interview which involved me standing around in a motorway service station as two of the most inept salespeople I have seen, tried to sell stuff to people in a hurry to get on their way.

At least this time I had the chance to argue with my interviewer that it was a job that relied heavily on chance to actually get paid, which was why it held no interest for me. He dismissed this and told me there was absolutely no risk in this job. Obviously he didn’t know I’d already experienced a day in this job he was trying to sell me. And in that day, one of the guys trying to sell this unnamed product could not sell a single item throughout entire day. So in short, this poor guy had just worked a nine-hour shift for precisely zero pay. I would say that came under the category of risk.

So once again, I have the displeasure of witnessing another company that models itself on the one wonder of the world that sits on the edge of an endless desert. Quite an appropriate metaphor really. Because that “business opportunity” sits prominently in the centre of a career wasteland that preys on people desperate and gullible enough to be drawn in by their promises of unreasonable sums of money. It is criminal that they can advertise themselves so falsely and in doing so, try to weakly cover up the fact that they are nothing more than a glorified pyramid scheme.

At least it’s given me the experience needed to spot one of these ridiculous ploys a mile off. So it’s not a total loss. Besides, pyramids are massive. Not hard to miss.

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4 responses to “The Not So Great Wonder of the World

  1. Simon, what an horrid & frustrating experience.

    It infuriates me that companies like this prey on people. This is not a job, it’s a joke. Lucky you managed to see through it quickly this time.

    They say 3s the charm, so let’s hope you don’t repeat the experience again.

  2. Simon

    Not sure if it would do any good, but I would suggest that you report them to the Advertising Standards authority and trading standards, as you say they should not be allowed to get away with preying on people like this.

    Failing that write to Watchdog about exploitation of the unemployed.

    Companies like this give marketing a bad name.

    • He argued that technically, at one stage, if you stay with them long enough, you finally get to do what it says on the original job listing.

      But I do agree, it is false advertising anyway you look at it.

  3. why oh why do they still try this crap on, well done you for not being pulled in, you had the balls to say f75k off but i hope in more polite terms. so meny ppl waste years working for these assholes

    lets hope you find the best job in the world and can stick 2 fingers up to these companies and their criminal ways becouse thats what they are

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