More Cold Call Absurdity

I decided to give myself a vacation from all the cold sales calls I’ve been receiving. The way I did it was simple, I forwarded all my calls to voicemail: the people I really want to hear from have my mobile number anyway.

Unintentionally, this has become a fascinating experiment in how far people will go in trying to push cold call sales. My email box has suddenly become stuffed with queries. Here’s the most recent example, with names changed to protect both the guilty and the innocent:

Hi (my name),

I thought (developer name) may be of interest to you. He is a strong C# developer with strong Web Services who lives in (my company’s town). I understand you having been looking recently for a developer with these skills. (developer name) is finishing for us at (company name) in (nearby location) and wants another contract in the local area. (developer name)has built various websites both for (famous company) as well asin his current role at (company name) and has enjoyed working in the sector. He is available at a daily rate of £400 per day inclusive of charges.

Would you like to speak to him in an initial telephone chat ?

(evil consultant name)
Consultant

Note: I have not requested that the evil consultant actually look for anyone, nor do I have any vacancies available. The tone is also subtle in suggesting I somehow know her. As I don’t, I had no hestitation in replying:

Please take me off your email distribution list. Thank you in advance.

About five times out of ten, this is enough for the mails to stop. However, not in this instance. I got the following a few minutes later:

Hi (my name),

I’ve been actually trying to get hold of you for the last week. Your not on a general mailing list as I dont work using general mailers.
What number can I reach you on ?

Kind Regards,
(evil consultant name)
Consultant

This caused my office colleagues to break out into a fit of hysterical laughter when I read it aloud.

That said, I did try to be measured in my response:

(evil consultant name) –

I have been deluged with phone calls from a variety of firms – emarketing, recruitment, etc – since a former director of this company unfortunately gave out my name and other details. I have, as such, instituted a strict policy of not taking any unsolicited correspondence from any firm. I would be most appreciative if you would respect this policy.

Thank you in advance.

Yours sincerely,

(my name)

There, I thought, that’s that. Unfortunately, no – this arrived a few minutes later:

Hi (my name),

I can appreciate alot of agencies know your name, (my company) have a history of taking on .NET contractors for at least the last four years and I really am in a position to help. One of my current contractors has been approached for a role, he is engaged for another six months at (famous company) on a C#.Net project. I have 56 contractors working currently working on sites such as (famous website #1), (famous website #2) and other related e-commerce business.

With my extensive background in placing .NET professionals over the last 4 years I have an unsurpassed database of people I know who can deliver on Projects. Crucially I know the differences between an AGILE, OO or Waterfall Project. Technically I know if a contractor has built a web services, is exclusively winforms or hasn’t done C#’.

I realise my initial way of contacting may not be to your liking, but I really think I can offer you a quick efficient service whereby you don’t have to spend your time sifting through cv’s and doing large number of interviews.

When would you be able to catch up for a quick call or a coffee.

Eagerly awaiting your response

(evil consultant name)

Now let’s analyse this situation: I’ve not only made it clear that I don’t like being contacted in this manner, but that I’m being deluged by such contacts. I have also said that I don’t take unsolicited correspondence; yet they are pressing on in the same vein. This browbeating form of doing business is hilariously absurd.

Another form of this spamming now comes in “pseudo-newsletters” – here is a sample, entitled “Who Said The Internet Phenomenon Was Over?”:

Dear (my name)

Those of you who like to be kept up to date with current affairs in the IT world tend to see the success it can bring with being efficient in doing this. Therefore, I’m sure there were a few raised eyebrows at the latest news that Microsoft’s Windows OS may soon be becoming a thing of the past!!!!

The basis behind this is from the news that Microsoft are developing radical software that is set to eventually replace windows. Midori (the new OS) is to be built from the ground up and be internet based to reflect how we use our PC’s at home, at work or for communication purposes.

Midori is set to revolutionise how computers are going to work, and a successful transition for this would be seen through companies having skilled employees with good web skills. This will enable yourselves to have a head-start in using the new OS and have an edge over competitors who aren’t aware of future trends,

This being the case, the need for Web Developer with up to date skill sets is soon becoming a must for small and large businesses to maintain their competitiveness and secondly help their company moving forward with the times.

I am currently representing a number of candidates for contract and permanent work for all skill sets that will match your company. Day rates for contractors tend to start around the £300 mark and top end candidates could work for anything for £500+. Permanent candidates are negotiable on salary and would have to do with the whole package rather than the salary alone.

I look forward to hearing from you in regards to any Developers needed for your organisation, contract or permanent as I am confident I will be able to offer you a good service in terms of candidates and criteria to your needs as a business.

Many Thanks

(another evil consultant)
Web Development

Given that my business, such as it is, is technology, yes, I do know all this, thank you very much. Trying to lure me in with a newsletter is not appreciated.

The common element is desperation; this does indicate the job market is having problems, and some of these firms are about to get murdered. Most of them have a very limited lifespan even under favourable economic circumstances. I do feel sorry for these people to a limited extent, but really, if all the energy, drive and effort used to hammer sales out of unwilling customers was used instead to deliver groundbreaking services that everyone wanted, then perhaps capitalism could be said to be working instead of delivering mind-numbing absurdity on a daily basis.

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