This report is intended to inform and educate the American public on the dangers of letting strangers in your home, and becoming desperate for work.
I was 19 at the time. The band that I was in was planning on touring that year so I needed money- fast! I barely had any real job skills so I turned to the local newspaper. There wasn't very much in the paper at the time but an ad that caught my eye. It said, "Sales. Be your own boss. No training- no problem! Will train!". So I called and was immediately setup for an interview.
I went to their office and had no idea what I was in for. We all sat in a room wondering what to expect. Next thing you know I guy comes in with a vacuum! We were about to train to sell this thing door to door he explains. one person raised her hand and asked, "How do you expect us to sell this thing door to door?" He then told her, "Get the f**k out- NOW!" He turned and said she would never get anywhere in this business. I then knew this job was going to be weird, but I went along with it anyway.
Over the next few weeks I was out there selling vacuums- IN THE GHETTO TO PEOPLE WHO WERE ON WELFARE! I got chased by dogs, had a gun pointed at me, my team got shot at, I got threatened by thugs-it was nuts!!!
We were in the Ghettos of Newark New Jersey trying to sell $1500 dollar vacuums to people that couldnt afford it. Of course they wanted it because we were great at selling them. It's just that the people couldnt afford them. We would sell it to them anyway and make them sign the papers.
At which point when they tried to give them back to us they couldnt. Then their credit would be ruined, but it didn't matter because as long as they signed the papers we got paid. We got $350 dollars for every vacuum sold. I sold about three a day. I worked 6 days a week. On Sunday the boss would call my mom's house and harrass my family to get me to come to work. My dad threatend my boss and my boss said "Shut the f**k up! Your son has to come and work today!!"
One day I met a girl they hired and she became my girlfriend. We went door to door together sometimes. One time as she went through her selling act, she called the office to "see what the boss can do (meaning see if he can lower the price) The manager got on the phone and said, "maybe if you shake your f***ing a** sucked @!&# a little more you'd be able to sell more vacuums. She cried to me.
In the mornings at the office as we went through our "positive morning meeting", all the guys-managers as well- would make sexual hand gestures to all the ladies. They would also grab the ladies private parts as they walked out the door and told them to sell more.
Another time my team leader parked the van and said he'd be right back. We were in Trenton, NJ. He was in this house for about 2 hours. He came back and he smelled like perfume. We knew he had sex with the lady inside. We frequented that house. One night he got chased out the house by her angry husband with a gun. We never went back to Trenton.
One day I was approached by the big boss (the owner). He was an older guy- in his 70's. He asked how I was doing with selling. I told him, "I'm doing ok but I want to do better". He then grabbed me by the shoulders, shook me violently and then he slapped me twice across my face. I realized it was part of his character to act "crazy". I also realized he was older than me so I didnt hit him back. I wanted to. I pushed him away from me and told him that if he ever did that again I would kill him.
After a couple of months they began to mistreat my co-workers and I some more by not paying us what we were owed. They would take hundreds from us by saying that we never really sold as many units as we did. Some co-workers went crazy and trahsed the place. Others fell down in the office and cried. Many left. Many stayed. I lost my mind. I took a vacuum and smashed it through the van winshied that was in the parking lot. I took the vacuum pads and threw them in the air. They rained down on everyone that stood in amazement at my hysterics. I was called a (((REDACTED FOUL LANGUAGE))) and a blackie. My girlfriend was called a s**t and a w***e by her team leader.We left that day.
We were also threatened but nothing happened to us.
I always wanted to do someting about how they treated me but I was young and dumb. My family was on the poor side then and we didn't have the internet. If I knew then what i know now I would have brought the whole Kirby name down and erased them from history.
KIDS- Don't ever think you're alone. Open your mouths. There are people out there that will listen to you. You are all smart now. Use the internet. Don't make the same mistake I did.
perth amboy, New Jersey
U.S.A.Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on Kirby Vacuum