The Truth About My Job Pt2
It’s been about five months since my first post about CenturyLink. Since then, they’ve added a new team to the outbound floor. A lot more people have come and gone (mostly the latter, virtually every person I wrote of in the last blog has moved on). The center hasn’t changed all that much; we still process inbound and outbound calls.
Not too long ago, one of the higher-ups hurled a racial slur at me. Remarkably, I don’t think he meant it to be malicious; I really don’t think he knew any better. The matter was addressed privately; I didn’t want it escalated. I didn’t want to see anyone—anyone—put on the street because of me.
But that doesn’t mean I forget; I had to deal with this from a higher-up at my place of employment.
I still love what I do; I love the friendly, competitive, mildly snarky environment. This is probably the most diverse group of people I’ve ever worked with (outside of California), and while it’s definitely a sales environment, most people will pass along what they’ve learned along the way. You have to earn the right to brag, though.
Some of my issues with the job stem from my own faults; I don’t like being told what to do, and I have a real hard time following rules that don’t make any sense; such as being forbidden to surf the internet during work hours.
Granted, during inbound days, I’d understand it; we’re often slammed with back-to-back calls, so you don’t really have time to update your Facebook. But on some outbound days? When we’re waiting up to five minutes between calls? We’re supposed to “mentally prepare for the next call”. Times like this, I’d rather be physically preparing my resume, but it’s what it is. I’ve gotten into too much trouble for net surfing, so I don’t chance it anymore. Doesn’t mean I have to like it.
We also have these heavy-handed Quality Assurance scans that would make the job a lot easier, if they were handled right. They exist to ensure that we’re not doing anything unethical or illegal to a customer. But when someone gets penalized for telling a customer that a call may be “monitored” instead of “recorded”, it feels more like someone taking a power trip and adding unnecessary stress to an already demanding position.
I don’t have a problem with change; I have a problem with blatant unprofessionalism. I have a problem with roughly thirty percent of my sales never going through and no explanation given. I have a problem being penalized for not selling leads that have been wrung out repeatedly (then again, to be fair, I get burnt out, so I miss a lot of opportunities on leads that could be sold). I have a problem for rules that change so quickly it’s nearly impossible to keep up at times.
A number of us had been promised for months that we would be moved into another capacity of the job. When the time finally came, we all showed up to work two hours early only to hear from each other (instead of our bosses) that the opportunity had been cancelled. Little instances like this are what keep me from referring people to this job. I prefer to keep things simple; I come in, do my job to the best of my ability, and go home.
All of that said, I grew up on this job. When I initially started, it was supposed to be a temporary thing; I never expected to be good at it, I never expected to take it seriously, and I certainly never expected to learn so much about telecommunications here. I wouldn’t say I look forward to going to work, but there are worse ways to kill eight hours. Certainly less profitable ways, anyway.
Overall, CenturyLink is a job; for me, it’s a stepping stone and a means to an end. I will probably be here until/if my writing takes off. I manage to keep things simple, stay away from things I don’t need to be involved with, and do my job to the very best of my ability. That, in my opinion, is the best way to survive here.
That is the truth about my job.
(c) Avery K. Tingle for Akting Out LLC
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