Right. That’s it. I’m never answering the phone again.
The bi-annual let-us-upgrade-your-phone-for-nothing conversation just happened from a nice lady called Jade. It seemed to be going well and very much in my interest, then many minutes in, suddenly I’m having my network changed to Vodafone because the statistics show the coverage is better in my area. Um, you didn’t mention that. Ah so EE aren’t offering free handsets at the moment. Hmmm. OK. What? You’re going to put me through to EE so I can ask them for a PAC code and to apply the early-termination fee to my account? I’m not to worry because Vodafone will pay that termination fee for me? Well, umm, why don’t I just let the Orange contract run out so you don’t have to pay the fee? Because Vodafone are happy to pay it and it’s a multi-billion dollar company so they don’t care – it’s a drop in the ocean, you say. You are starting to smell of rat, Jade my friend.
THEN! Then she starts coaching me on what I have to say to EE, why they’re legally obliged to give me my PAC and what phrase I have to use about “finding a new business partner” that they’ve found makes EE less likely to launch into a marketing spiel to try and keep me! I’m not making that up, that’s actually what she said. Her marketing spiel was to coach me how to navigate through EE’s marketing spiel!
By now I’m in massive conflict because I’ve actually believed her about the benefits to me (cheaper tariff, new handset) but I’ve also got this little guy in the back of my head jumping up and down saying, “NO!!! THIS IS THE EXACT BULLSHIT THAT CATCHES YOU OUT EVERY TIME!!! IT SOUNDS RIGHT NOW BUT IT WON’T DO LATER!!! RUN AWAAAAAAY!!!”
So I tried to run away. I explained to Jade why I’d changed my mind and I wasn’t going to go ahead. She kept up her Derren Brown mind control shit that she’s been very well-trained in and the conflict within me just rose and rose. She talks and she talks and she talks and I literally have my head in my hands thinking, “she makes so much sense but I knoooow this is wrong, how can I get out of it… nooooooooo” so in the end I just have to interrupt because she hasn’t breathed in three minutes and say “NO! ENOUGH!” Or something. I don’t know what I said. I was polite. But I firmly and insistently ended the conversation and then hung up before she could launch again. And I breathed a deep sigh and found I was actually shaking a bit. Christ.
And then the supervisor called.
I don’t remember much of the conversation with “Ed” because I’d had the benefit of a 30-second mental regroup – like a boxer getting his brow wiped – and I’d had time to put my guard up. Oh god he’s soooo good! He seems genuinely hurt that I’ve misinterpreted their intentions and he’s proud of the service they provide and if he can just explain and anything that will let him carry on punching me with his finely-honed sales sparring and not let me stop and thin…”JUST STOP TALKING!”
I actually said that.
“I’m terminating this conversation because you’re very good at selling and you’re manipulating me into making a decision I wouldn’t otherwise have made. I’m NOT DOING THAT. OK?”
“Yes but if I could just explain who we are and what we…” “NO! I HAVE TO WORK! GOODBYE!” Click.
And now I’m properly shaking because I’ve just hung up on 2 people who were just doing their job, doing what they’ve been very effectively trained to do. People I would inevitably find lovely people were I to meet them socially. Probably good people. I feel like I’ve punched a puppy because he was licking me so hard I couldn’t breathe and was about to die if I didn’t get him off me.
I sat down to work and I couldn’t because my brain was utterly fried and conflicted and I was still shaking. All because someone was trying to make a commission.
So I thought I’d tell the story and see if that calmed me down a bit. I feel better now. Thanks for reading, my lovely bloggy therapists