I don’t usually complain about companies and their sales approach, since I know how hard it is to sell things. But today I had a house call by a Telstra person and his sales practice was so dodgy – it’s just not something I would have expected by such a respected company as Telstra.
He came with a clipboard, had a name tag, and was on the verge of running away again when I got to the door – he really made the impression of a busy technician and took notes in his clipboard while we were talking.
He asked me whether I was with Telstra and I said no. He further asked who my phone line was with and I said iiNet. He then asked whether iiNet was looking after our physical phone line connection and I said probably no, but rather that it still belonged to Telstra – I found that a strange question to be asked by a technician who should really know, but then he might be new from India and not know everything yet.
He then said that in this case his information would be interesting for me and said that on Monday and Tuesday between 9am and 5pm Telstra would be undertaking work on the phone cables in my street and that I would be without connection, both Internet and Phone. I said ok, if it cannot be helped and thought that was it.
But that wasn’t it. Out of seemingly personal curiosity, almost as if he was making a decision for his own personal home, he asked how I was going with iiNet. I said good. He asked how much I was paying and how many phone calls that would include. I stated the rough amount and that my phone charges were really low and that amount almost covered all my phone calls and Internet connection. He then went on asking how much bandwidth I had. I stated the summary of peak and off-peak bandwidth to which he asked how much was peak and how much was off-peak. At this point I was getting slightly annoyed, since he could as well look up all these details on the Internet and really doesn’t need to get them from me.
But then came the really weird part. He then said that with this bandwidth I could barely surf the Internet and my phone line would be really crappy. He then started trying to sell me a Telstra ADSL service. This is where I got really annoyed and almost loud. I said that I knew what I was doing and that for what I am getting from iiNet I would have to pay 10 times as much with Telstra and that under no circumstances would I switch back to Telstra services.
He seemed to understand that he wasn’t going to sell me any phone or Internet services today, so he switched topic: what about a Foxtel account then? I said no thank you and good bye and closed the door.
So, now, I am actually wondering whether his initial statement that our street will have an outage on Monday and Tuesday is actually correct or whether that was just a way to get his foot in the door. I am really pissed off with Telstra for such dodgy sales practices. Unfortunately, their complaints department does not answer calls on a weekend and their technical department was not willing to confirm an outage on Monday and Tuesday since I am not a Telstra customer.
Telstra: I really wished your sales people would play fairly in the market. I could see so many neighbours talking to your sales guy and considering his offers that I almost felt like going over and uncovering his lies. He is making false claims about other Network’s services, he is making false claims about technical details and he is trying to open the door with a possibly false claim on a technical outage. Plus: I have to wait until Monday before I can tell you about it. How much worse can it get?