Wednesday, 8 August 2007

ADA is redefining a cold call

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A woman wrote in to The Diabetes Blog about an unusual call she received from an American Diabetes Association telemarketer. Her reflection on the phone call was not a traditional feel good response. Has anybody else received a phone call like this one?

The comment came in under the title: Why do people apologize? The woman explains the nature of the call: A telemarketer called us Saturday. The man thanked us for our support to the ADA and asked if they could send us stuff we could pass on to our friends and family and if they gave us any money to pass it back to the ADA. I said that would be fine. He went on and on about how big of a problem diabetes is. He asked if I knew anyone with diabetes. I said I do. We sat in silence for the next 10 seconds and then the man said "I am so sorry" I said don't be, its fine. I don't mind. He started rambling on about something and sounded very uncomfortable. I said thank you and hung up. Why do people apologize? It's not their fault. I'm not dying or in pain or anything like that. I take medicine when I eat, done, end of story. It's so uncomfortable and coming from someone representing the ADA, just unprofessional.

It's a fair question: why would a telemarketer apologize? Perhaps the telemarketer should have thanked you for your time and gone on with his calls. He must've been writing a book! That's it - he's writing a book on the people who are continuing to contribute to the ADA mission to prevent and cure diabetes. Savvy telemarketers with interpersonal skills are hard to come by. We know one thing: the ADA isn't wasting any money on training their telemarketers. Nobody said telemarketing was an easy job but I guess the preventing and curing diabetes is the mission: impossible.

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