• Report: #181890

Complaint Review: Vector - Ken Coker

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  • Submitted: Sat, March 18, 2006
  • Updated: Fri, May 14, 2010

  • Reported By:Ann Arbor Michigan
Vector - Ken Coker
2500 Packard Rd Ann Arbor, Michigan U.S.A.

Vector - Ken Coker Ripoff WASTE OF TIME MISLEADING INFORMATION DISCRIMINATION Ann Arbor Michigan

*UPDATE Employee: Clarifying Cutco Ripoff report

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: A more positive experience with Vector Marketing - CUTCO

*Author of original report: Vector-Ann Arbor Michigan

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MARCH 17TH 2006
VECTOR-CUTCO-ALCAS PRIVATE INVESTIGATION


BRIEF OVERVIEW OF REPORT:
THIS REPORT CONCERNS CUTCO-VECTOR-ALCAS ETHICAL BUISNESS PROCEDURES. IT WILL DETAIL
MY EXPERIENCES WITH VECTOR AND MY EXPERIMENT THAT I HAD CONDUCTED BETWEEN THE DATES
OF MARCH 15-18, 2006.

LEADING UP TO THE EXPERIMENT

CAUSE FOR INVESTIGATION:
ON MAY 2005 I WAS JUST OUT OF HIGH SCHOOL WHEN I RECEIVED A LETTER IN THE MAIL FROM A COMPANY CALLED VECTOR. THE LETTER WAS VERY VAUGE IN DETAILS BUT ALSO ENTISING. IT HAD SIMPLY STATED PART TIME WORK FOR COLLEGE STUDENTS, ADVANCEMENT OPPERTUNITYS. NON-
PAID TRANING AND UNREASONABLE REQUESTS PROMTED INVESTIGATION.


THE FIRST CALL TO VECTOR:
I MADE CONTACT WITH A VECTOR REPERSENTIVE OVER THE PHONE. THE ONLY DETAILS THAT SHE GAVE WERE THAT THE JOBS WERE "VERY COMPETITIVE" AND THAT POSITIONS WERE FILLING UP FAST.

UNAWARE OF THE CORPERATE SCAM, I LATCHED ONTO THE OPPERTUNITY. I WAS TOLD THAT THE JOB WAS NOT INVOLVED WITH DOOR TO DOOR SALES AND TELEMARKING AND THAT THERE ARE A FEW OPENINGS FOR INTERVIEWS LEFT. SO I WAS PENCILED IN FOR AN INTERVIEW...


THE "INTERVIEW"
THE INTERVIEW BEGAN WITH A "SCREENING PROCESS". THERE WERE 3 OTHER PEOPLE IN LINE WITH ME THAT DAY. THE SCREENING PROCESS AS THEY CALL IT WAS SIMPLY GENERIC QUESTIONS THAT ANYONE THAT HAD ANY SHRED OF COMMON SENSE COULD OF ANSWERED. OF COURSE ALL OF THE 3 PROSPECTIVES AND MYSELF MADE IT THROUGH THE SCREENING PROCESS.

THE CONJOINED INTERVIEW:
THIS SECOND INTERVIEW WAS ACTUALLY AN INTERVIEW TO SOME EXTENT, THOUGH I BELEIVE THAT THE SO CALLED INTERVIEW WAS MORE OF A MARKETING PLOY. DURING THE INTERVIEW, THE VECTOR REPERSENTIVE BUILT VECTOR AND ITS CUTLERY UP TO BE THE GREATEST IN THE WORLD. ACTUALLY THEY DO A GOOD JOB AT BUILDING UP THERE PRODUCT, IT ACTUALLY IS A DECENT PRODUCT AND BETTER THAN AVERAGE KNIFES. THE PRODUCT IS NOT THE REASON FOR MY INVESTIGATION THOUGH.
DURING THE INTERVIEW WE WERE ASKED RANDOM QUESTIONS ABOUT OUR FAMILY, HOBBIES, AND WANTED US TO GO INTO DEPTH ABOUT OUR LOCATION OF RESIDENCE. THIS IS OF SIGNIFICANCE BECAUSE THE PREVIOUS CRETERIA IS WHAT VECTOR LOOKS FOR IN DECIDING WHO THEY WILL LET IN.

NOW THINK ABOUT IT FROM CORPERATE VISION... BY ADVERTISING PART TIME EMPLOYMENT FOR HIGH
SCHOOL STUDENTS AND PROSPECTIVE COLLEGE STUDENTS ACROSS THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES, YOU WOULD BRING IN A DIVERSE CROWD OF PEOPLE FROM DIFFRENT BACKGROUNDS AND CULTURES. ALL WHO RESPOND TO AN ADVERTISEMENT WILL BE INTERVIEWED. ALTHOUGH OVER THE PHONE THEY CLAIM THE
JOB IS VERY COMPETITIVE, YET AN OPENING FOR A MEETING WITH A MANAGER OR REPERSENTIVE OF VECTOR
IS CONVEINTLY AVAILABLE IN THE NEXT 24 HOURS. WHEN THE PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYEE OF VECTOR GETS INTO
THE INTERVIEW, THEY ARE ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT THEIR SIBLINGS, AND BACKGROUND. THIS IS DONE TO GET
A SENSE OF THEIR POTENTIAL FAMILY INCOME. IT IS VERY EASY TO GET A READ OF PEOPLE IN HOW THEY DRESS, SPEAK, AND THEIR CULTURE. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT BECAUSE IF VECTOR BRINGS IN PEOPLE FROM HIGH INCOME FAMILYS, THEY ARE ULTIMATLEY ADVERTISING TO WEALTHY AMERICA FOR FREE. THIS ELIMINATES THE NEED TO ADVERTISE THROUGH MEDIA OR TO SELL IN RETAIL STORES. THE WHOLE BASIS OF
EMPLOYMENT IS BASED ON HIGH SCHOOL/COLLEGE STUDENTS SELLING CUTO PRODUCTS TO THEIR FAMILY.


NOW WE HAVE ESTABLISHED ONE OF THEIR HIRING MOTIVES, LET GET BACK TO THE INTERVIEW:

DURING THE INTERVIEW, THE MANAGERS EXPLAIN HOW THEY ARE DOING GREAT AND HOW ITS A GOOD TIME TO BE WITH VECTOR. WHAT THEY FAIL TO TELL YOU IS THAT ITS ONLY A GREAT TIME
IF YOUR WORKING FOR CORPERATE. THEY ALSO GIVE FALSE INFORMATION ON THEIR PARTNER COMPANY ALCAS. THEY CLAIMED THAT ALCAS WAS A FORTUNE 500 COMPANY. LOOKING AT THE STATISTICAL DATA FROM THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, YOU WILL SEE THAT THIS HAS NOT BEEN THE CASE FOR OVER 20 YEARS.
HOWEVER THERE IS A SIMILAR COMPANY THAT FITS IN THE FORTUNE 500 CATEGORY. THAT COMPANY IS ALCOA. Alcoa is the world's leading producer of primary aluminum, fabricated aluminum, and alumina ALCOA WAS AFFILIATED
WITH ALCAS, THE SAME TIME ALCAS WAS A FORTUNE 500 COMPANY.

IF ALCAS IS NOT A FORTUNE 500 COMPANY, WHY WOULD THEY SAY THEY ARE? TO ENSTIL CONFIDENCE IN THE PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYEE THAT THEY STAND A GREAT CHANCE AT SUCCESS. SO IF THEY WOULD LIE ABOUT SOMETHING LIKE THE STATUS OF THEIR PARTNER COMPANY, WHAT STOPS THEM FROM GIVING MORE
MISLEADING INFORMATION?..............NOT A DAMN THING!

AT THE END OF THE INTERVIEW/SALES PITCH, THE GROUP WAS ASKED TO FILL OUT A SURVEY. THEY CLAIM ITS TO STREGTHEN INTERVIEW EFFECENCY. HOWEVER THERE ARE ONLY 2 QUESTIONS ABOUT THE INTERVIEW, THE REST IS MORE ABOUT THE PERSONS BACKGROUND, HOBBIES, AND FAMILY. BY THE END OF THE INTERVIEW VECTOR MANAGEMENT HAVE ENOUGH INFORMATION TO DECIDE WHO MOST LIKELY COMES FROM A HIGH INCOME
SITUATION. THEY ALSO FIGURE OUT WHO HAS MORE WORK EXPERIENCE IN THE WORLD. THIS IS KEY TO THEIR WHOLE OPERATION. IT IS KEY BECAUSE PEOPLE WITH WORK EXPERIENCE HAVE HIGHER ETHICAL STANDEREDS OF THEIR EMPLOYERS. VECTOR IS ATTRACTED TO HIGH SCHOOL/COLLEGE STUDENTS BECAUSE THEY HAVE LOW ETHICAL STANDERD OF EMPLOYERS BECAUSE THEY JUST DONT KNOW BETTER BECAUSE OF DECREASED WORK EXPERIENCE.

SO THE INTERVIEW IS OVER AND I ALONG WITH ANOTHER INDIVIDUAL FIT THEIR PROFILE. THE OTHER TWO WERE NOT HIRED IN. THEIR AGES RANGED FROM MID 20'S TO MID 30'S. SO NOW THE QUESTION COMES UP, WHY WOULD YOUNGER PEOPLE GET THE "HIGHLY COMPETITIVE" POSITIONS OVER MORE EXPERIENCED PEOPLE?

FIRST VECTOR TRAINING EXPERIENCE-THE BREADING OF THE SCAM
NOW ITS TIME FOR TRAINING FOR MY NEW "JOB". TRAINING CONSIST OF 3 DAYS OF UNPAID COMMITMENT THAT
VARIES FROM 4 1/2 HOURS TO 6 1/2 HOURS. EVERY PERSON IN TRAINING WAS ABOUT MY AGE AND WERE EITHER HIGH SCHOOL OR COLLEGE STUDENTS. AFTER ABOUT 2 HOURS INTO TRAINING I WAS SO BOARD AND THATS WHAT PROMTED ME TO GET SMART AND RELIZE THAT I WAS BOARD AT MY OWN WILL AND GETTING NOTHING OUT OF IT.

SO I WALKED UP TO THE TRAINING MANAGER AND SAID I QUIT. HE SAID HE WAS VERY SORRY TO HEAR THAT, AND TOLD ME THAT I WAS MAKING A MISTAKE. THEN HE ASKED WHAT MY REASONING WAS FOR QUITING. AT THIS POINT AND TIME IT WASNT BECAUSE I THOUGHT IT WAS A SCAM, BUT BECAUSE I WAS JUST SIMPLY THOUGHT UNPAID TRAINING WAS STUPID.

FUNNY THING TO NOTE: AT THIS SAME TIME MY SISTER WAS ALSO HIRED IN, HUMMM..... SHE MUST OF MET THE VECTOR CRITERIA AS WELL. ISNT THAT INTRESTING FOR A VERY COMPETITIVE JOB FOR 2 MEMBERS OF THE SAME FAMILY GETTING HIRED IN. WE BOTH WERE EVEN IN THE SAME TRAINING COURSE. SHE ENDED UP QUITING AFTER THE FIRST FULL DAY OF IT.

THAT WAS PRETTY MUCH THE END OF THAT UNTIL JUST RECENTLY.....

THE MAKING OF THE EXPERIMENT:

OVER THE COURSE OF TIME I HAD VARIOUS OFF AND ON JOBS. MY MOST RECENT JOB WAS WITH BEST BUY BEFORE I WAS LAID OFF AFTER THE HOLIDAY SEASON IN MID JANUARY OF 2006. SO NOW I WAS BACK TO LOOKING FOR A JOB. I HAD RANDOM JOBS AFTER THAT, NONE THAT WERE REAL STEADY SO I WAS ALWAYS
IN A CONSTANT SEARCH FOR A JOB. ONE DAY I WAS ON THE INTERNET AND TYPED IN PART TIME EMPLOYMENT. ONE OF THE TOP SEARCHES FOR PART TIME EMPLOYMENT YEILDED VECTOR. I LAUGHED TO MYSELF BECAUSE I REMEMBERED HOW MUCH OF A WASTE OF TIME I THOUGHT THAT PLACE WAS. AS I WAS
SCROLLING DOWN THE SEARCH RESULTS, I FOUND AN ANTI VECTOR SITE. CURIOUS I CLICKED ON THE URL
AND READ THE DETAILS. IT HAD PRETTY MUCH STATED THAT VECTOR GIVES MISLEADING INFORMATION ABOUT THE JOB DISCRIPTION. FURTHER INTRESTED I TYPED IN VECTOR SCAMS IN THE GOOGLE SEARCH.

THAT YEILDED AN OMINOUS AMOUND OF ANTI VECTOR MATERIAL, MOST OF WHICH WERE FROM FORMER EMPLOYEES THAT WENT THROUGH THE VECTOR SYSTEM. WITH ALL OF THIS NEGITIVE FEEDBACK I WAS READING CONCERNING VECTOR AND ITS PARTNERS, THIS IS WHERE I DEVELOPED THE IDEA OF SEEING
FOR MYSELF HOW THEY REALLY DO BUISNESS. SO I FILLED OUT AN APPLICATION FOR WORK AT VECTOR, AND WITHIN THE DAY I GOT A CALL BACK FROM VECTOR. THE ONLY REASON I DID THIS IS BECAUSE I DID NOT HAVE A JOB AND IT WOULDNT HURT TO TRY IT OUT AGAIN.

THE (RE)HIRING:(PART OF THE DAMING EVIDENCE)

HONESTLY I THOUGHT I WOULD NOT GET HIRED AGIAN BECAUSE I QUIT A YEAR AGO. I WENT TO THE INTERVIEW ANYWAY BECAUSE I HAD NOTHING BETTER TO DO. ALTHOUGH I WAS SURE I WASNT GOING TO GET THE JOB, ESPECIALLY IF THE SAME MANAGER THAT I ANNOUNCED I WAS QUITING BECAUSE I THOUGHT IT WAS BORING AND STUPID. WHEN I GOT TO THE VECTOR OFFICE I IMMEDIATLY SAW THE SAME MANAGER. I THOUGHT RIGHT THERE HE WAS GOING TO COME UP AND SAY SOMTHING ABOUT MY
LAST VECTOR EXPERIENCE. I WAS ALSO 20 MINUTES LATE TO THE BUILDING. MY SET TIME TO BE THERE WAS 515PM ON 3/15/06. I SHOWED UP AT 535PM. SO I WAS SURE I WAS OUT RIGHT THEN AND THERE.........THEN THE MANAGER CAME AND TALKED TO BE AND INTRODUCED HIMSELF TO ME. IT APPEARS THAT HE HAD FORGOTTEN ME. HE DIDIT EVEN SAY ANYTHING ABOUT ME BEING LATE.

HE JUST TOLD ME TO SIGN IN AND HE WOULD BE WITH BE SHORTLY. AFTER THAT I KNEW SOMETHING WAS UP WITH THIS. HOW CAN A VERY COMPETITIVE JOB BE SO LENIET ON BEING LATE TO AN INTERVIEW. NOW ITS JUST A JOKE TO ME.

VECTOR HAS DIFFRENT HIRING STANDARDS FOR DIFFRENT GROUPS OF PEOPLE:

OF COURSE AGIAN EVERYONE THAT WAS IN THE OFFICE MADE IT THROUGH THE "SCREENING PROCESS". NOW THE INTERVIEW. I WAS IN A GROUP WITH 3 GIRLS, 2 AFRICAN AMERICAN, 1 ASIAN. I LOOKED AT THE GROUP AND THOUGHT TO MYSELF, HOW THE HELL AM I BEING CONSIDERED FOR A JOB STILL WHEN ALL OF THESE GIRLS WERE HERE ON TIME AND I WASENT. THE INTERVIEW OF COURSE CONSISTED OF BUILDING UP CUTCO BUT WITH VERY VAUGE DETAILS OF THE JOB REQUIREMENTS. I ACTUALLY SPACED OUT MOST OF THE INTERVIEW JUST TO MAKE IT EVEN MORE CHALLENGING FOR ME TO GET HIRED. WHEN THE INTERVIEW WAS OVER THE SAME STANDERD SURVEY WAS PASSED OUT BUT THIS TIME IT WAS DIFFRENT. HE PASSED OUT THE SURVEYS AND MADE EVERYONE COMPLETE THE SURVEYS, EXCEPT FOR ME. THE ONLY QUESTION HE MADE ME FILL OUT ON THE SURVEY WAS QUESTION NUMBER FIVE ON THE SURVEY WHICH ASKED "IF HIRED INTO VECTOR, HOW WOULD YOU BENIFIT US". RIGHT THERE THAT BLEW ME AWAY. HE BASICALLY TOLD ME THAT I WAS HIRED IN FRONT OF THE WHOLE GROUP. THEN I WAS THE
FIRST ONE IN THE OFFICE FOR THE FINAL REVIEW, AND OF COURSE I WAS HIRED, OR SHOULD I SAY REHIRED.


THE INVESTIGATION BEGINS:

NOW I AM FULLY AWARE THAT SOMETHING IS NOT RIGHT. NOW I AM HIRED IN AND I GET TO EXPERIENCE THE WONDERFUL VECTOR TRAINING AGIAN. IM NOT AT THE POINT WHERE IM PURSUING A JOB ANYMORE. NOW IM PURSING ANSWERS. AFTER DOING RESEARCH ON THE ALLEGATIONS PENDING AGIASNT VECTOR FROM
FORMER EMPLOYEES THE NIGHT BEFORE TRAINING, I DEVELOPED VERY GOOD INSIGHT ON THINGS TO LOOK FOR AND LISTEN FOR DURING TRAINING. I TOOK NOTES NOT ONLY ON THE GREAT CUTCO AND VECTORS PROPAGANDA, I ALSO TOOK NOTES ON THINGS THAT THE MANAGER SNUCK INTO TRAINING AND ALSO TOOK NOTES ON HOW HE TEACHES NEW EMPLOYEES TO CONDUCT BUISNESS.


PRELIMINARY RESULTS:

WHO REALLY IS UNDER INVESTIGATION:

I CAN NOT SAY THAT ALL OF THE VECTOR OFFICES ARE CRUPT. THE REASON I CANT SAY THIS IS BECAUSE I DID NOT DO A CASE STUDY WITH ANY OTHER OFFICE EXCEPT THE ANN ARBOR DIVISION.

SO WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? THAT MEANS THAT I CAN SAY FOR SURE THAT UNETHICAL AND DISCRIMINATORY ACTIONS DO INFACT OCCUR IN THE ANN ARBOR OFFICE. THOUGH I AM ALMOST
CERTAIN THIS STEMS BEYOND THE ANN ARBOR OFFICE, AND IM SURE MOST LIKELY PLAYS INTO VECTOR-CUTCO-ALCAS'S CORPERATE PLAN.

MY FINAL REPORT TO COME SOON

Insider
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Canada

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 03/18/2006 04:30 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Vector-Ken-Coker/Ann-Arbor-Michigan/Vector-Ken-Coker-Ripoff-WASTE-OF-TIME-MISLEADING-INFORMATION-DISCRIMINATION-Ann-Arbor-Mi-181890. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 UPDATE Employee

Clarifying Cutco Ripoff report

AUTHOR: Kleimola - (United States of America)

I am rather surprised by the rip  off report filed by "Insider Ann Arbor, Michigan Canada"


I am a sales rep for Cutco.  I started in my interview/initial training took place a few days before Christmas.  It is true that all who were applying for the position were invited to the group interview.  I also experienced the pitch for Cutco.  I found the summary report fascinating.  During the group interview, the Office Manager gave those who were not interested in being a sales rep to leave.


As far as age, I am 57 years old.  A off hand remark was made of my age, but nothing I considered offensive.


The training offered by the Manager and Assistant Manager was thorough. Cutco supplied us with training manuals, the Vector product book and a basic knife set (we bought those at half price). They do not give the cutlery away, because they are your personal knives.


The manager and assistant manager are available by cell phone.  If you leave a message, they promptly call back (unless, of course, it is a late night call).


You are able to work the hours you wish to work, when you work, etc.  There are no minimum number of sales/sales calls made per week. 


You also are paid about $17.50 whether or not you make a sale. 


Is the company perfect?  Of course not.  Would I recommend the company?  Only to individuals who are highly motivated, have a desire to learn sales skills, are open to training and are interested in making money.  I have not spent a great deal of time selling.  In fact I did not make any appointments from mid-March to mid-May.  Despite that hiatus, I have sold nearly $4,000.00 in Cutco products.  At this time I am paid a 20% commission.  After selling $6,000.00 in Cutco merchandise, my commission will increase to 25%.


finnishamerican

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#2 UPDATE EX-employee responds

A more positive experience with Vector Marketing - CUTCO

AUTHOR: Mattm - (U.S.A.)

I read the prior student's message and will not speak directly to his experience. He/she is the only one who has that ability. I, however, did work in the Livonia office under a Ken Coker (presumably the same person, just a different location at the time) and found the experience worthwhile. I too went through the interview session, there were a few folks that were hired and went to training and a few that did not. I went through the training seminar, which occurred over a 3-day period very quickly after my interview.

I don't believe it was paid per se, but I thought it was efficient to get me through the "training" within a few days and started in my new job within a week. Given I was a student at the time its not like I had that much going on except hanging out with friends.

I ended up working for the company, found their policies around pay, ec and the representation of the company consistent as advertised. And I think most important the product was really strong; most customers I saw, or I should say about 95% that already had experience with the CUTCO products, were fans of the company and loved their products. That really made a difference relative to other sales jobs i had which were selling products that were either poor quality or were particularly useful (ie they were nick-nacks or junk). I stayed with the company for two summers, and in short I had a good experience. To each his own, but this company did me right.
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#3 Author of original report

Vector-Ann Arbor Michigan

AUTHOR: Insider - (Canada)

My final report to come by March 25th 2006. Hopefully with not as many typos and messed up spelling.
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