Is phone etiquette lost on everyone these days? I am not exaggerating when I say that half the time when I answer the phone at my office, I get hung up on! No one even bothers to say, “Sorry, wrong number” beforehand. Just *click*. And then there are the people who actually intend to call me on my cell phone–and don’t leave a voicemail when I fail to pick up! To me that says, “Oh, I just wanted to chat, but I guess you’re busy.” Is it wrong of me to not call them back until my convenience? After all, it can’t have been too important if they didn’t leave a message. Yet my mom will call back in 20 minutes and say, “Didn’t you see my call?” It also bothers me when people send me a text message that says, “Call me.” Is it too much to ask for a little detail so I know if I need to leave my meeting for an emergency?
And then there are the telemarketers. Unfortunately, they’re not limited to land lines these days. Usually for a typical sales call I’ll say I’m not interested. If they keep talking instead of gracefully exiting the conversation, I say, “I’m not interested. Goodbye.,” and hang up. I feel rude every time, but what am I to do? Sit on the phone for hours while someone tries to sell me something I don’t want? Well, they’re not even the worst of it! I keep getting these calls from an automated system that say, “Lower your interest rates! Press one to speak to a consultant.” There is not an option to press two and be removed. I’m so sick of these calls (every-other day, at this point) that today I pressed one. A man answered and said, “So I understand you’re interested in lowering your interest rates!” And I said, “No, actually I’m interested in being removed from your call list.” Instead of removing me right away, he said, “Well, first, let’s see if you’re eligible for this!” I said, “I don’t need your services, I just want these calls to stop.” He said, “I’m sure you could use the service! I actually aim to be an executive account director so I know more about this than some other representatives you may have talked to.” (At this point, I’m only still on the line because he hasn’t removed me from the danged list yet!) He kept on and on about how it won’t hurt to find out if I’m eligible, how it will help me, how he could see by my Experian report that I’m eligible. I finally said, “Tell you what, why don’t you give me your contact information, and I’ll call you back when I am interested.” His response? “Good luck with that! Enjoy having high interest rates,” and he hung up before I could say, “Let me speak to your supervisor.” Very professional, Mr. Executive Aspirations! Unfortunately, as the call was automated in the first place, I never was able to call back and speak to that supervisor. And I doubt he removed me from the list, either. I find it extremely rude (aside from being a bad business practice) that this company offers you no real option of removing your number from their list–either press one and talk to a pushy sales-person who won’t remove you from the list, anyway, or get another call from us tomorrow! *sigh* 0713-11