Wednesday, July 17, 2013

 CYDCOR is a notorious and massive Door  to door ( " outside sales")   contractor  that works worldwide. They are notorious for enforcing a cult like  atmosphere   working their  employees over 70 hours  a  week with NO salary ( comission only... most people make at or below minimum wage when you average their comisssions and divide them by the hours worked..)

moving on ..  at this moment ( july 2013)  it would appear that a huge proportion ( 40% +) of ALL  entry level  job postings insales  marketing and management on careerbuilder .com for the Central florida area come from 3 organizations that are part of the CYDCOR empire . These organizations will stress their independence ( and from a legal standpoint they are independent) but they are closely i nterrtiwned,  sharing  office space and growing from each other.  they are  INTERNATIONAL PSI/PSI INTERNATIONAL, DAVIS MARKETINC CONCEPTS ( DMC) and the one  i have personal experience with  MARKETING CONSULTANTS  OF ORLANDO(MCO) .
  you can see a sample of these ads here :

Note that some of these ads tout that there is no  cubicle  or  phone work or absolutely no cold calling!   There may not  be any cold calling on the phone, but there will be plenty of interrupting  peoples dinners when you knowck on their doors, showing up, unannounced,  on their property....

 While out job searching I sent a resume out to them. it was an instinctual thing and  frankly i have no memory of doing it. I got several emails from them and ignored them. They seemed fake , like an " office space" parody  of  business speak, all " maximizing opportunity" and "synergistic effects" and other meaninngless coprorate catchprases.  One day the  phone rang... I answered and it was someone from Marketing Consultants  of Orlando, she gave me a female   name, interistingly in the townand a half moths  i worked there i would never meet this person  or  anyone with such a name... i found iout later this is a tactic .. each  ad has a different " contact" person so that they can monitor which ads  result in the most leads.  T he person on the line told me they where thrilled at my  resume and themanegerial experience therein and could I please come In tomorrow for an interview?

I appeared the next day with my resume and was taken to the back fo the offices to meet the manager. ( who would also turned out to be the " owner".. this  is siginifcant..) The office bustled with energy.. there where at least  five other people waiting for an itnerview... and everyone was very well dressed  and high energy ( all of which is on purpose... as salesmen MCO   knows all the psychological tricks, but they curiosu thing is how muche theyuse it on new employees and not just propective customers)

The manager/ owner, turned out to be a friendly  bubbly and  energetic short blonde woman named Ashley Allen who greeted me warmly. ( linked in page : Ashley  told  me she was very impressed with my management experience. she talked about  how she was looking for new managers adn could see from my eloquence , previous experience in the field of education and high energy that i could probably make a  good trainer. at no point did she mention what I would be training others to do.   AT NO POINT DURING THIS INITIAL INTERVIEW DID SHE EVER MENTION THIS WAS A DOOR TO DOOR SALES  JOB, NOR THE FACT THAT EVERY OTHER PERSON IN THE OFFICE( except for her, though she had done it in the past)  SPENT MOST OF THEIR DAY OUT IN THE SUN/RAIN GETTING CHASED BY DOGS/POLICE ETC IN ORDER TO  MAKE SALES, NOR THAT THIS WAS A COMISSION ONLY JOB  AND THAT, UNTIL YOU ARE PROMOTED TO ASSISTANT MANAGER, THE ONLY WAY TO MAKE MONEY IS THROUGH YOUR COMMISSION  BASED SOLEY ON  DOOR TO DOOR SALES, OR THAT AS YOU PROGRESS THROUGH THE  COMPANY YOU WILL BE GIVEN NEW RESPONSIBILITIES BUT NOT ANY  EXTRA RENUMERATION TO REIMBURSE YOU FOR THIS ADDED  EXPENSES, NOR THE FACT THAT THE COMPANY WILL NOT REIMBURSE YOU FOR EXPENSES SUCH AS GAS, FOOD CONSUMED ON THE FIELD, OR TRAVEL EXPENSES AND HOTEL ( THAT'S RIGHT ! YOU PAY FOR YOUR OWN BUSINESS TRIPS!) AND FORGET ANY BENEFITS OF ANY KIND. Noope  By the end of the first day I was told this was a management training  program ( like the ones you  can  apply to at Enterprise rental car  etc) And i would receive a phone call at  7 p.M  notifying me   if i  made it to the  second round 

At 7 pm the phone call came. It always comes. The machine needs  new bodies to  get through   its enormous burn out rate. 

Next day , round two. I meet at a Panera Bread just across the street from Marketing consultants of Orlando's office with a young man. he tells me he works for the corporation that has  hundreds of offices throughout america (  the name of the corporation is NEVER GIVEN). he is up here on a " business trip" and he is telling me how fun these are (  he does not tell me that HE IS PAYING HIS OWN EXPENSES ON THIS "BUSINESS" TRIP .. which he is) .  he buys me lunch ( out of HIS OWN  pocket i later learn, never to be reimbursed) and  tells me  about the  sturcture of the  organization.

 It is here FOR THE FIRST TIME that the   Door - to door componenet of the job  is  mentioned. This is portrayed  as a very  brief 3-5 week experiential learning adventure . After that I will move into leadership, where i will become a trainer. The reason of those  3-5 weeks is so that  i know how  to train  based on my own experience. Sounds swell. So far it is implied that there are  two  tiers of employees   MANAGEMENT TRAINEES ( that is you and me) and salespeople. We train the sales people but to do that we must temporarily become sales people. THERE IS NOTHING TEMPROARY ABOUT IT, THIS IS A SALESMAN'S JOB.  EVERYONE  IN THE OFFICE BUT ASHLEY ( THE OWNER/MANAGER) SELLS DOOR TO DOOR EVERY DAY, AND SHE ONLY GOT TO BE MANAGER  AFTER SELLING  DOOR TO DOOR FOR 2-3 YEARS.  All other   titles in this organization " leader " corporate trainer" even " assistant manager" are DOOR TO DOOR SALESPEOPLE first and foremost , with added responsibilities ( but usually NO added compensation) as you move up the line. My interviewer, who whas up here on his own  dime buying me lunch from his own money, would after my interview,  take off his suit and tie  put on  kakis anad  a  blue ATT shirt and head to the field to see if he could make any money this day.  NONE of this  is mentioned by Marketing Consultants/ CYDCOR  in the  clear honest forward way  that I am mentioning it to you. 

 This is where the CYDCOR system ( remember them? that is the company whose name is never mentioned to new prospective hires  you will be told about how this is the most succesful  drict marketing firm i the wold with  800 or so franchisees ( like MCO) BUT the name is never mentioned. here it is  the name is CYDCOR  formerly known as DS-MAX. GOOGLE THESE NAMES and you will soon find why we are explicitly told never to  mention them to  interviewees... they do not have the  best reputation) 

anyways here is where the CYDCOR system hard sell begins. My inteerviewer tells me that the  thing that drew him to this corporation are the clear paths to advancement.  he then starts telling me how i will be  an owner within a year (  never "MAY be" always "WILL be", the use of   words like may can, probably basically etc is FORBIDDEN as "doubt words".. every interaction you have within the company or with clietns is ony about " will" do  what will happen etc) , and before that I will be an assistant manager, a corproate trainer and  a leader. 

here are some of the things he does not tell you : 

YOU WILL BE A DOOR TO DOOR SALESMAN EVERY DAY NO MATTER WHAT UNLESS YOU ARE AN  OWNER.  Even the assistant manager at MCO, who was very busy with many day to day aspects of running the  ship, went out  and sold door to door. In fact he was usually the best salesman  that week ( the  high roller  day  in day out, top of the " big ups" board.) In fact he was  assistant manager BECAUSE he was the best salesman!  This  is one of the biggest  disconnects  within the company.. you must always  see yourself as a LEADER/ CORPROATE TRAINER/ ASSISTANT MANAGER and talk up your  position at all times, never call yourself a salesman ( even the lowest salesman is an " account manager!")  if you express contentment  with being a mere "account manager" watch out! the entire system is  built around  your desire to move up!  DAILY you will be asked to express publicly how badly you want to reach the next level and how soon you will  reach that goal and yet......and  yet the  ONLY thing that matters ( until you are assistant manager) is YOUR PERFORMANCE IN DOOR TO DOOR SALES DAY IN AND DAY OUT. that is the only thing that determines whether you will eat  that week!

Except for the Manager/Owner and  the Assistant Manager, your  Income is based solely on your perofromance on door to Door sales.  BUT as you  move up the scale you get responsibilities... THAT YOU HAVE TO FUND! In other words there are added responsibilities but no added income! people often  GO DOWN IN INCOME when they go from  good " salesman"  Sorry! I meant "account manager" to Leader!  why? because now you have to   go on " business trips" ( you pay for the gas! and  the hotel room... thankfully you get to share that hotel room with five of your best friends so you only pay 17% of the price... but still... have you ever heard of a  job sending you on a business trip and REFUSING  to pay for the  hotel? because that is what Marketing Consultants  of Orlando does!)... now you have to  " volunteer" to host  " team nights' (  parties... fro which attendance is  mandatory held usually every thursday nightr) .. you may be even asked to split money with a new recruit so they do not leave ( a leaders main job..after his or her own door to door sales, is to  make sure the new people  dont leave.) 

After he  met with me  my interviewer told me   he would meet with the manager/owner ( the manager and the  owner are always the  same person in  CYDCOR speak) and  again  6 pm phone call would tell me if i would move forward  to round three. 

Of course the call came. as it always does. 

Round three was aagain with Ashley , the manager/owner. She basically recapped  all of the news about my advancement  possibilities given by  my second round interviwer. Seriously the whole spiel.  
then she asked me  if i had any questions .

I had  two... I informed her point blank that it was standard advice for job applicants to research the company online... but i had tried doing so and had found no  information at all.  She deflected this question by telling me that " all the branches have different names" .. I of course already knew this   I  had menat the nmae of the " mother organization. She never  gave me one. In retrospect  I should have walked out right there for why woul d she not give me the information if  it wasn't  because she  did not want me to read what the internet  had to say abou the mother  company? ( said Mother company by the way  is called CYDCOR  formerly DS-MAX.  you know have the info i did not have.. happy googling!)

secondly: i expressed her my concerns about working soley for  comission. She told me there where two payment  schemes, and that i could choose each monday which one   was the best for me. first scheme was straight comission   everyone chose this becaus epeopell  routinemy made 800 a week blah blah blah.  basically you got 80-116 dollars ( depending on the package) for each person you signed up to Uverse; 
Second  a salary  of $ 500 dollars a week that took the place of your first 6 sales  plus 50 bucks a pop for each one after  that,
THIS WAS A BOLDFACE LIE, THAT SECOND OPTION DOES NOT EXIST STRAIGHT COMMISSION IS THE ONLY OPTION.  Not only did i Never meet anyone at all who took the salry option , but it would have been matehmatically impossible for Marketing sConsultants of Orlando   to offer it, since most people make less than 5 sales a  week. MCO simply does not have the cashflow for that  second option. THERE IS STRAIGHT COMISSION ONLY.  Why did the owner lie to me? because she needed my warm body  to sell ATT U_verse due to t the high turnover rate.  Why such a high turnover rate? because of the   working conditions....

 I was told  training would be  " equivalent to an MBA" that i had to carry a pen and  notebook with me at all times and that every night  I would have to take a multiple choice exam that would determine if i could  go on to the next days training. 
These multiple choice exams never  materialized. 

Instead training is  going out in the field  with a  more experienced salesman or " leader" and observe him in action while you try to memorize the pitch. I have nothing bad to say about the pitch, so instead I will point out other things. 

What to do if the customer has a no soliciting/ no trespassing sign? 
My thinking : " don't knock,even if he answers he will be pissed and  wont buy anything  from us"
training: "  no soliciting no trespassing signs are prime targets, their existence   means  EASY MARK , these people are impulsive and are easy sells. 

No soliciting signs in neigborhood : ignore. 

gated community :  sneak past by  driving in after another  car, or jump the wall/ fence (  i jumped the wall fence several times and saw many others do it ) 

if someone says  " no soliciting " say, I understand sir/ madam, I am only here to talk about the line work and construction".

  The key to the sale came from  using four impulse factors and   overcoming  three objections : 
the Ipulse factors include  

" keeping up with the  joneses"  ( bandwagon effect as we were told " no one wantses to be the first or the last to do anything) once you signed up someone in your neighborhood you namedropped them as often as possible all over the  pitch. 

" sense of urgency"    not actually talking  fast ( that confuses people )  instead Use " real quickly now" as your transition for anything, thus letting the customer know  you wont be taking   too much of his time . 
Sense of loss . claim it is your last day  ever there and you  will never be out there ever again  the end.  Thi sis of course bullshit,  you will be out there as long as  it takes in order to close as many people as possible ( close  = sign up)  and they can get teh same deals   from the  ATT website, not just from you.

" indifference" bascially  claiming you dont care if they dont sign up. playing hard to get high school girl  style. 
as for the objections you basically  say  " yes sir I understand that , then " explain away their objections ( not ONCE did i or anyone else actually adress the objection head on instead we repeated parto fo the pitch taht seemed relevant  and or used one of the four impluse factors above, and then wernt back to the ptich " bulldozing" ( yes that was the term used) the clients until the end.

These are again the negatives, there  are of course some  positive technuqiues  as well such as  building rapport witht eh customers, " painting a clear picture,  etc.)

 " leaders " come in a t ten for a " meeting of the minds"  you will come  in at eleven to have a one on one with a leader, then at  midday  " solo" meeting. then at one o clock  " atmosphere " and impact meetings. I wont go into detail  here  but if you want to read more about the cult like   goings on ehere   google " cydcoratmosphere" or the like.   At 145- 200 o clock solos are relased to  go to their  territories, leaders hang back  until 2:30 . These leader meetigs are rather more unpleasant than the atmospehere one since the owner gets to berate them  about the  performance of the newbies under their command. 

Between 145/ 2:30 and 9  you are in the field. 

You must get  to your destination ( no gas WILL NEVER BE REIMBURSED)  , Buy and eat lunch  ( NEVER REIMBURSED) please dont spend more than  15 minutes eating!  you must   triple loop 35 houses, and you must head back for  ' bells'  at 9 p.m) 

Your neighborhoods will usually  be below the median,  your customers will often have poor credit (  rule of thumb: the nicer the customer is to you the less likely his credit will go through if you manage to close him) 

you MUST work if it is raining outside. I and many others came to like getting rained on, people feel pity for you when you are soaking wet drencehd to the bones, and are nicer and th s more likely to close. 
you must knock on every    door  until  you have done so  NINE times or you have gotten two hard noes. Yep that is  two. Get a door slammed agnrily  in your face?  your leader will make sure you go back!

You are not allowed to use an umbrella, hat, or shades,  prospective customers  supposedly mistrust you ifi they dont see you out there soaking  in the  skin cancer!

At 9 you head back for bells and evening atmosphere, where thos ewho closed that day ( where
" on the bell') are celebrated.  You are done by  9 45, or 10 when you are a leader.

 so  twelve hours a day if you are a leader, 11 if you are a solo. Monday to friday.... then add 2 hours   more for  satruday  ( and you MUST work saturday unles you sold ten accounts moday to friday, in the eight  weeks i was there full time i NEVER saw someone close ten accounts mon-friday) 
thats 60/55 + 14/13 = 74-68 hours a WEEK!

note that leadership standards  ( which less  than half off the salesmen will reach in any given week) is 500 usd a week... basic second grade math shows  that leadership standards means you made EIGHT DOLLARS AN HOUR  MINUS WHAT YOU SPENT ON FOOD AND GAS.  there will be many days in which you will go home  after a twelve hour day  smelly and sweaty  and usualy in physical pain, HaVING MADE ZERO MONEY. you donated your day To Marketing Consultants of Orlando... and all you got back was dirty looks  because you " rolled" that day. 

Actually once you hit leadership your    take home pay can go down again.. because know you are  expected  to 

give up a day of productivity to RETRAIN one  of the   newbies  under you ( and every newby  needs to be retrained  at least once ) 
do WHATEVER IT TAKES to make sure your newbies dont " toast" out ( drop out and leave) ... like maybe throwing in some of your own money to help newbie with  the gas. 

WHY  would anyone ever agree to these added responsibilities without any added income? because you are being told for THREE HOURS EVERY DAY  ( which again you are not paid for) that  you are  in a  "MANAGEMENT TRAINING  PROGRAM and you  will be  an OWNER.   anything resembling a normal  9-to 5 stable  job with such things as " heatlhcare and " retirement benefits" are berated as  for  losers/ sheep/etc/one step removed from welfare. If you have no tolerance for Ayn Rand  style Objectivist  " job creator/ " prime mover " style bullshit.... well be warned  YOU GET EIGHTEEN HOURS A  WEEK OF IT HERE. 

And of course let us not forget the elephant in the room  in the comission free environment  those weeks when you dont sell anything for  four or five days , maybe a week, and you see your bank account  dwindle as  you  spend money on gas to head out to your crime infested territory.. and get nothing for it. Its moments like the time  you buy a whopper jr because it is on sale for a dollar.. you bite into it and realize it is the first time in  eleven days you  have eaten meat.. not because you are a vegan but because you cannot AFFORD meat despite working 70+  hours a week that you  go... what the hell am i doing here?  You decide to look for other work on sunday... your only day off... but you are too tired...

I  lasted  eight weeks as a full time  employee. I logged  all my hours for eight weeks. In  eight weeks I logged 553 hours  of Work for   Marketing Consultants of Orlando. My total after taxes take home pay  was 1197 dollars.  for eight weeks THAT WORKS OUT  TO  TWO DOLLARS AN HOUR. what more is there to say?