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20 August 2014 @ 10:08 pm
Catching up  
Both yesterday and today I had lunch with an ex-workmate whom I haven't seen for a few months. He's been in the city on a training course for a couple of days, having moved into a new role in the bank. Really enjoyed catching up with him, but it brought a lot of bad memories back - talk of "uplift" teleconferences each Monday, that are compulsory for those who didn't meet all eleven KPIs in the previous week, for example. And the same tired old lines being trotted out: "So what are you going to do differently this week to improve on that result?" And everyone having to attend these "Raving Fan Revolt" sessions; urghh, my twitter feed has been full of that for weeks now, it's like bathing in a pool of someone else's warm vomit.

Added to all of that, I was talking to a friend from a branch down south, the other night, and she mentioned how she has to make at least four unsolicited phone calls per day, in an attempt to make an appointment for one of the bank's sales specialists, but she's not allowed to talk about product when she calls - she can only tell the customer that it's a good idea to get their banking reviewed. Who has time for that?! Anyway, they've been told that if they don't make their calls, they'll be getting calls from the area manager. You'd think he'd have more important things to do, yes? To me, it smacks of bullying, and just hearing about it made me feel really anxious.

You'd also think that after 21 years there I'd really miss the place, wouldn't you? I miss what it used to be, but not what it's become. And then the Financial Review last weekend was trumpeting about bank's financial results, and how their biggest improvements were in productivity gains ie doing more with less, and I knew exactly what they were on about, and how those gains are achieved. It's the frontline staff, and fewer of them all the time, being flogged for every sales opportunity, to the point where walking into a bank is a profoundly disturbing experience for customers, with overtones of MacDonalds "Do you want fries with that?" enough to set your nerves on edge. I won't set foot in a bank if I can possibly avoid it, these days, to the point of depositing cheques via the atm on the weekend.

Unfortunate, in the extreme, that it's the only business I know.
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Current Mood: depresseddepressed
Strike while the irony is hot: [EMATE] CUPPAdraycevixen on August 20th, 2014 05:38 pm (UTC)

I'm so happy for you that you managed to get out of there and in to a much better situation before you were driven mad. ♥

I do my banking online and through the ATM but the last time I had to actually go in to the bank to change an account I couldn't believe the laundry list of things I was asked and it probably added about 15-20 minutes to the amount of time I was in there. Luckily I'm aware enough of how these things work not to hold it against the client services person but I can easily see how unpleasant some customers might get in response to it.
miwahni: Random Dead parrotmiwahni on August 21st, 2014 11:08 am (UTC)
If anyone asks me how my new job compares to my old, my stock answer is "well I'm no longer heading towards an early death from a stress-related illness, so I guess that's something."

Isn't it awful, though - you think you'll be in and out with a quick question or simple request, instead you get the Spanish Inquisition. Which nobody expects.... *g*