Cagey Consumer

Yet Another High-Tech Safety Experience

I took my High-Tech Safety "Basic Class" last December. Just wanted to let you know I was one of the people who fell for this scam too. I was hoping you would read my story to show you two things...you are not alone and second, my life at the time was completely ruined.

I was a fresh high school graduate...fighting with my parents, being a typical 18 yr old know it all. I was desperate for a high paying job. I wanted to prove to them how capable i was of moving out and being independent without their help. I saw the same 4k/mo add as you did...It had the ft/pt/eoe/fee line in it. Boy was I fooled!

I called up, scheduled an interview, Drove 20 miles in a gas guzzling car to get there. I can tell you from minute 1 how suspicious I was about the whole thing..but I remained passive as I was desperate.

The building was pretty old and scuzzy but I ignored that. I walked in and was greeted by the receptionist. She told me "Mr. Bunting" would be right with you. I went through the orientation by myself...when he gave me that silly application with those dumb questions on it, a mental red flag was raised. When he gave the speech, I was again thinking twice about the whole thing. Something just wasn't right about the whole thing. I proceeded to the interview because I figured what the hell, it can't hurt.

What I wouldn't do to go back in time and bail on those crooks. He hired me like all the rest of the people...I was so excited about it..I dreamt of the things i could do with 4k/mo.

He then hit me with the application fee thing and the cost of the books...since we thought it was going to be refunded in 2 months, i thought why not...I was broke and didn't have the money but I was desperate.

He told me he would hold the position till 3:00 that day...2 hrs or then he would be forced to give it to somebody else. I sped off to the bank...I thought to myself, thank god for my credit card cash advance. I paid the app fee and the "book deposit"...and went home happier than I have ever been. I felt like such a success.

The first class date had arrived..i was ready to be trained as a manager...they brought me through this class telling me I wasn't selling anything..i was consulting for their safety...and if they didn't want to buy anything...make them look like a fool and then pressure them into buying it...He asked that of my friends and relatives!

If I sell 1k by next class... get the prestigious "presidents Club" award. In a nutshell, he told us if you aren't in the PC, you probably won't make it in the company. I sold my heart out to friends and family. I embarrassed myself to sell them overpriced products for a small commission. Well, I made it about 70% of the way and decided to purchase a few things myself..I was young and dumb..i figured it wouldn't hurt since i'll be making the big bucks soon. I got the PC award and some cheap little watch...I went to IOT from there from 9-6 with no pay..and was forced to sell the junk at night in order to make my second goal.

Of course I bought more stuff to make my second goal. I received at least 6 different plaques for goal achievement etc. I felt pretty good abuot it, but the voice in the back of my head was telling me something...I ignored my instincts because I wanted to prove myself to my parents. They told me over and over again i should be getting paid at least minimum wage to be in the office...i began to see the unethical business practices but since i was so hard headed, I ignored them in hopes of a bright career.

To condense my story a little bit...many long days and long commutes in bay area traffic...most of those days i learned nothing...worked for free...sold products for them...bought probably 2k worth myself (i know i was dumb but i was a desperate 18 year old with something to prove.)

This all went on for 3 months until the office manager quit and they told me to commute even further to an office in south san jose...That is when i realized i would never be a manager, and I didn't want to be anymore..

I thought to myself that I would never want to put anybody through half of what I went through...and I was blinded the whole time for hopes of a better job, and a better life. Now I was broke and owed on my credit cards..I worked for free for 3 months while attending school...worked long hours and commuted long ways to get there spending lots of moneyI didn't have for gas and food., i embarrassed myself to my family and most of their friends...trying to sell them something...

I disappointed my parents who told me numerous times to quit, my girlfriend wanted to break up since she waited at home every day for me to get home which was very unfair to her... I wasted one of the most important summers of my life, the summer after graduating high school....missed out on vacations and fun i could have had because i was working every day except sunday.

This was the biggest and longest setback of my life. What was I to do now??? This company had taken an already bad year, and made it absolutely miserable.

Things are great now...i'm finishing college, have a very high paying career now, and am an all around happy person. Looking back to that period in my life makes me want to cry because I lost so much and missed out on so many things. If I were to ever confront this Tony York clown...well, I don't know what i would do but I would hope he sees the damage he has done to people like you and I.

Fortunately time has helped take the pain away, but It was the absolute worst year of my life...It made me want to cry about how much I really lost. However I gained 5 gallons of firevoic, probably 6 extinguishers, 10 fire alarms, 1 ladder, a special sales kit, and the hardest lesson I think I have ever learned.


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April 11, 2001