Call Center Purgatory <$BlogRSDURL$>
Call Center Purgatory
Saturday, January 01, 2005
  The Offensive Cog...Part 1

Recently, I realized that I had not only offended someone, but had made an enemy in the call center. I know I may seem over-sensitive, but I still can be oblivious to other people's feelings from time to time. I may have been in the right in what I said to this person, but I wasn't right to say it. To a lesser extent the culture here is to blame for this, but not enough to justify what I did.

One of the new hires was a gentleman named Ron. He is somewhat older than me, and has had jobs of considerable more responsibility than I have, at least that's how he presented it to us. After training, he developed a high opinion of himself, even though the rest of us know much more and are more experienced than him. I don't mean he should have low self-esteem, just not be so sure of what he is doing when so much of the training is really on-the-job. Most of us were quick to listen to the veterans and ask their advice often after training, since it is so easy to screw up and make expensive mistakes in this business. But he does not want to take instruction or listen to correction from other more experienced people.

At least that is my opinion of him, which probably accounts for my rudeness to him. Several weeks ago, George was the supervisor on the floor while Larry was off the floor. George is one of our veterans who is very knowledgeable, but has no people skills. Most of us just ignore him and his comments and do the job we all know how to do and make it through the day fine. When there is a problem though, we all count on the fact that George knows what to do. We all respect his knowledge.

There are always certain instances where you must advise the supervisor on the floor if you are making a large trade, or need authorization for something beyond certain pre-approved limits. Then, if you come up against something that does not feel right, or you are suspicious of, you should go to your supervisor.

This day, Ron was handling multiple transactions on his own and we were all busy. He came to George and said, "George, should I re-confirm authorization on this trade with the secondary client since the share price changed again?"
"What did the primary client say when you set it up?" George asked.
"Well, it was the secondary client that I was more concerned about. Never mind, I'll just call them." Ron replied.
George shot back, "you will call both of them. There's too much money involved!"
"No, you're not listening to me, I only need to call the secondary client on this!"
"I don't care what you think, the primary one is who will be ultimately responsible, you must call them back."
"Why won't you listen to my question? You don't have to yell at me! I know what I'm doing!"
"Damn it, just do what you're told!"
"George, why won't you listen to me?"
"Do what you are told and make the call now!"

Finally, Ron relented and did what he was told. But the matter wasn't over...
To Be Continued in Part II

Thanks for reading,


aarrghhh..come on A.C. What happened next????
Yeah, I'm on the edge of my seat here. You tell the greatest work stories!

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Exploring the mind numbing insanity and childish corporate culture of an unknown call center employee.

Purgatory: A place of suffering and torment with an unknown duration. In Roman Catholic Theology-the place where the dead are purified from their sins.

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"One must know oneself, if this does not serve to discover truth, it at least serves as a rule of life, and there is nothing better." -Blaise Pascal

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"Wake Up"
By Rage Against The Machine

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