I spent five years working in an alarm monitoring call center from hell. You would call people at a number they provided, identify as the Alarm Company, and ask them for a verbal password they provided. Many forgot the password, yet wanted FULL details of the alarm. When you would be firm that you couldn’t provide information, you know, given that you’re calling about their SECURITY SYSTEM they would often say they “don’t like your tone”. Meanwhile, while they’re not home the Grinch could be in their home taking all their presents. But now, let’s talk about the security guys tone of voice instead. Often, you would try to get them off the phone and send police, because again, THEIR BURGLARY ALARM went off. BUT NO! They want to talk about my tone of voice, being the guy that is proactively trying to monitor their home. I think Girl Scouts of America would be better suited.
There is a special place in hell for people that would say “I’m not giving you my password, how do I know you’re my alarm company”. Great, oh yes, I’m an espionage Ninja that wants YOUR password so I can exploit the situation and steal your doilies and family photos! When you would say, no problem, call us back they would say ,”wait, what happened” and try to keep you on the phone. Um, back to that PASSWORD issue. Still refuse to give it and threaten to cancel their service.
Others acted like it was their constutional right to have a working alarm system. Some would cancel service,but call back down the road when their alarm panels beeped, outraged that as a non paying customer they can’t be helped. “Well you put this in my house”, “it’s your equipment”. Yes, me, the call center rep. I put that in your home. That is like me calling Lowes because a sink purchased there twenty years ago in my apartment is leaking. “Well you sold it to us”. The calls were awful, the people I worked for were awful and I had a non stop party line of old people calling in because we did medical pendant alarms too! They would want to dispute a charge with the guy on the other end of “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up”. Many didn’t even know they had a button and it would go off several times a day. Old people generally don’t hear well and have their TV on full volume and were shocked they couldn’t hear you over the LOUD speaker box in their home.
So, deep breath, life on the outside!. After five years of hell, I went to HR one day and said, no more, quit on demand. The money was good, the hell was not. Since then, I have a salaried position working for a non-profit that treats me like a human being. Not a day passes that I don’t give thanks that I’m not chained to a desk with someone screaming in my ear over an alarm. Don’t settle for less people. Take control. You’ll know when it is the right time.