• Report: #444176

Complaint Review: XLN Telecom

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  • Submitted: Thu, April 16, 2009
  • Updated: Thu, September 17, 2009

  • Reported By:London Other
XLN Telecom
The Brewery Building, 69 Bondway Vauxhall, London United Kingdom

XLN Telecom Interview or should I say waste of time! London Other

* : Helpful Steven

* : Avoid! Avoid! Avoid

* : An apology

*Consumer Comment: Confirmation of report

*Consumer Comment: Confirmation of report

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Well allow me to pull up my sleeves and let my annoyance pour out on to my keyboard and onto your screen. If you are reading this before accepting a 'job' with these people then count yourself lucky. I do.

Ok let let me start at the beginning. I, like so many others was job hunting on a job site (Totaljobs.co.uk) when I came across a job advertisement for 'Trainee Managers/Assistant Managers' for the company XLN. I applied as I was applying for practically everything and to be honest the ad sounded very promising. The role was exactly what I was looking for i.e. management and training. Out of all the jobs I had applied for online so far the ad looked the most 'thrown together' but I had applied and waited to hear if anyone would get back to me.

Around a few days later I recieved a phone call from Kelly from SP Marketing, saying that they had recieved my CV and would like to invite me in for an interview. I was told that I sounded ideal for the job as I was still young and they would like to invest in me to train to become one of their managers. She asked when I could attend an interview and suggested the next day which was a Wednesday.

I said that was not possible and told her I could do Friday morning to which Kelly told me that the interview process was actually for 3 hours so I may need to take the day off work. I told her she could put me down for the next week Wednesday and asked her to send me a job specification as the description on the internet was slightly vague. Kelly told me she couldnt send me a job spec as the role 'was not defined yet' but would send me an email to confirm the interview with what I needed to bring and where I would need to go. She said she would not be able to send it until Monday though. This was on the Tuesday.

Coming off the phone I was in two minds about the interview until when searching on Monster.com I saw the job ad again but with more detail, professionlism and at that moment it actually felt that I was applying for a real job. When I received the email from Kelly I replied asking her to explain the interview process as I could not understand why it would be 3 hours long. Kelly replied saying that Steven would explain the company and the role then conduct personal interviews.

Arriving at the interview on the following Wednesday I was greeted by Steve who shook my hand and showed me up stairs to a room full of other candidates (I'll say about 15). I noticed that they were all young with myself probably being the oldest at 24. I was sat at the front and asked to fill in a form and attach my picture to it. I did so and sat and waited for the other candidates to fill in the forms while during that time Steve brung more and more interviewees into the room. Once the room was at around 25 -30 we were left in there while Kiss FM played on the radio. It was definately a relaxed vibe and people chatted among themselves until Steve came back and told us that the interview was going to start and would be held by a very important man in the company, the man under the boss of the whole company, a millionaire, a straight talker. He actually warned us that this guy was very to the point and not to take offence. His name was Steven Punn.

Steven came in and starts what I can only describe as a well rehearsed act. He described himself as a 'Simon Cowell' character. Shouts, swears, jokes, laughs, toys and teases, tells us we are all desperate for this job but he is only going to employ 6 people and already knows who they are. He then went on to tell us about his wealth, how he started, where he came from, what his brothers did for livings and how they rented two penthouses from him but didnt know he was the landlord. This was broken up by facts and figures on XLN but it always came back to him and his millions- also how he made 4 other people millionaires (who were older than him) and how much he got paid for every word he spoke. In case you didnt know yet Steven Punn is a narcissistic and probably believed every word he said!

He gave us figures which he scribbled all over the board and shouted about other things at the same time so you were slightly confused as to what you were listening to. Once we knew everything about Steven Punn, hardly anything about XLN and even less about the job that we were applying for he began talking about the training...

The ACADEMY... 8 weeks intensive training where you would sit 8 tests for the 10 days...with the first 4 being about the 24 departments within XLN and the next 4 being 'performance related' tests. After you pass the first two weeks you would then be asked to train someone else and someone else and someone else and someone else until week 7 when you will be taught some other stuff.... Im sorry if this academy bit makes no sense to you - its just it really made no sense to me but I put that down to me sitting in a room for nearly 3 hours listening to this man shout and tell us how badly we wanted to be part of his team.

Anyway after 'explaining' the training and 'explaining' the job role he began the one on one interviews which consisted of him standing behind his little podium and interviewing individuals infront of the whole group. Some people he asked alot of questions to, some people he only asked a few. Everyone got the same question 'Do you think you could work with me?' to which he basked in the ego stroking he recieved. I was asked three questions... all of which I answered to his satisfaction and I was told I could leave but to call back at 4.30 to see if I had been succesful.

Now this was a first for me, calling to find out if I had a job- Hmmmmmmm. I had been in there from 11.15am until 4pm without even an offer of a drink and as I travelled home I realised I hadnt been allowed to ask questions and that it actually felt like I had been sitting through a sales pitch. However I called at 4.30 and I was told I had been successful. Yay! I had the job.

Then I ate a sandwich, allowed the fresh air to travel to my brain and serious doubt came over me. I went on google and typed in XLN scam and just like you found me, I found someone who thankfully saved me from leaving my job to go and sit through 2 weeks of cold calling and then a dismissal.

The facts are XLN want you to work for free- they are succesful through dishonesty and great acting.

If you are reading this before accepting the job which Im sure everyone in the room was offered, then count yourself lucky. I do

Jadey w
London
United Kingdom

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 04/16/2009 02:48 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/XLN-Telecom/Vauxhall-London-SW8-1SQ/XLN-Telecom-Interview-or-should-I-say-waste-of-time-London-Other-444176. 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

Helpful Steven

AUTHOR: Ali Baba - (United Kingdom)

I attended a group interview yesterday (16th Sept 09) and the context of the interview has already been mentioned; therefore, do not need to repeat it again.
I was offered a position at the academy and accepted. I mentioned the company to a friend, who said to have a look at this website and also found article in a Birmingham newspape via Goggle.
Naturally, I became concerned and called their number. Steven (not Steven Punn) did mention that the roles involve direct face-to-face sales, which is not what I was looking for in a job. During my conversation, he explained the details of the academy and job, although did contradicted what Steven Punn had said (re: Steven Punn talked about becoming managers). He understood my concern and why I would no longer be interested, his answers were straight forward and was helpful in the whole process.
My advice would be if they call about starting at the academy, speak to them about what has been written. If direct sales is for you, then attend the first day and see what it is like; however, it is not for me. 


 
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#2

Avoid! Avoid! Avoid

AUTHOR: ToryTory - (United Kingdom)

I recently attended the interview day, I was told any late-comers would not be allowed in the interview process, yet candidates were arriving well after 11:30. I have been to some strange sales interviews, so am aware they can be unorthodox; however, this was something else.
It was strange from the start. My profile was on totaljobs.co.uk and I get a call at 16:30 about an interview the next day, which puzzled me because I had not applied for any days and why they would call so late for an interview the next morning. When in reception, the sales area looked like a customer service centre, there was no staff buzz, staff with no motivation and looked like people not earning lots of money.
I thought there would be personal interviews at the end and instead of it being interviewed in a room on an individual basis, it was a few questions asked in front of everyone. How do you find out about someone by just asking a few questions.
We were told to bring our cv's and a passport-size photo, all the cv's were put on a table on the side (on the left side of the room) but were not looked at. Steven Pun just collected the cv's and just briefly looked at them when asking every person to talk about themself. There were some strong candidates and they had their interviews first, probably so they that could not see that everyone is asked the same nonsense questions.
Steven Pun talked about his apartment in Dubai not being ready because of the recession and then latter on talks about how he has several properties in Dubai.
The maths did not add up when he (Steven Pun) was talking about the pay structure, in sales they do bull-s**t about over-target earnings, but Steven was saying you can become a team leader of salespeople who earn up to 147k within 8 weeks and earn 78k. Hello! Would I not want to be a top salespeople instead. The figures were just made up as he went along, why have potentially such a highly wage position but most of the people with little or no sales experience.
Steven Pun talked about how he had problems with this speech when he joined the company in 2004 and they helped him. If you look as this link, http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steven-pun/13/77a/406, you can see he had two degrees from English universities before joined XLN. This link is very important, it shows he is not a director of XLN but of SP Markerting, his own company and he worked for XLN since 2003 as a franchise owner.
Steven's degree at Kent was very important, it covered 'employment law' and with this knowledge, he protects himself from unhappy employees.
On the journey home, thought about the whole strange process and researched the company and Steven Pun. I am glad I did this because when they called, i declined. If you go to Google's homepage, when you type XLN 'XLN spam' and 'XLN complaint, 'XLN academy' are in the search results. Why Ofcom has not stopped the company trading I do not know.
I wasteD four hours at the XLN office and 1.5 hours each way travel. That 7 hours could have been spent applying for jobs.
In addition, have at look at Steven's website, http://www.angelfire.com/pop2/stevenpun/home.html
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#3

An apology

AUTHOR: Christian Nellemann - (United Kingdom)

It has been brought to my attention that some people may have been unfairly treated by some of our field sales franchisees.

If this is true then this is completely unacceptable to me and to XLN.

I want to make it clear that inappropriate people management has never been tolerated within XLN and never will be tolerated. I also want you to know that we have reviewed our field sales operation and have completely restructured it, so that we are now only using experienced people orientated trainers and managers, recruiting only experienced field sales staff and reengineering the recruitment, training and sales processes so that the whole team can feel informed and fairly valued.

We appreciate very much the feedback we have received from people who feel they have not been properly treated by the old training process.

As a responsible company we treasure our staffs that are the backbone of our organisation. We would never do anything to disadvantage them.

I would like to make it clear that my door is always open to anyone who has any concerns about XLN and if anyone has any specific complaints about how they have been treated then please feel free to contact me in writing at XLN Telecom Ltd, The Brewery Building, 69, Bondway, London SW8 1SQ or by email christian.ceo@xlntelecom.co.uk

I especially want to hear if someone feels they have not been properly paid for the work they have carried out. If this is the case then I will personally make sure this situation is rectified.

XLN is a very successful company which has grown hugely over recent years because of the efforts of its staff who are properly and promptly rewarded.

XLN has an excellent reputation in the telecoms business, a reputation which has been hard earned and a reputation that XLN is determined to keep.

Very truly yours,

Christian Nellemann

Founder and Group CEO

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#4 Consumer Comment

Confirmation of report

AUTHOR: Anonymous - (United Kingdom)

I too wasted 5 hours of my life listening to the arrogant, yet persuasive, Steve Pun speak about the "wonderful" opportunities at the XLN Telecom Academy at 69 Bondway, Vauxhall, London.

After enduring this marathon sales pitch with no food or water, I was nonetheless suspicious but couldn't understand what Mr Pun was gaining from what appeared to be an elaborate con.

I got home and telephoned the number Steve had instructed us to ring. I was informed by Kelly Reed that "congratulations(!!)" I had the "job" and would be starting Monday.

Still suspicious, I searched for XLN Telecom Academy on the internet and found this report. The missing pieces of the puzzle instantly fell into place. As soon as I read that the 8 week Academy consisted of cold-calling potential customers under the guise of "management training" I understood how Steve benefitted from his scam.

This is obviously a pyramid scheme designed to exploit the unaware and obtain up to 8 weeks of their labour for free or slave labour prices. Eight weeks of recruiting customers for Steve with the impossible promise of a management position at the end of it. At no stage during Steve's 5 hour speech did he mention that his "management training" would consist of cold-calling potential customers.

Think about it - Steve informed us that after two weeks in the academy we would be teaching a new recruit (someone beginning week one in the academy) what we had learnt in the previous two weeks. By week 8 we would be teaching up to 10 new recruits. ALL OF THESE NEW RECRUITS WOULD BE FOLLOWING THIS PATTERN - TEACHING OTHERS AFTER WEEK TWO - AND SO ON AND SO ON. Pretty soon you are talking about hundreds and hundreds of people going through this scheme. It is obviously impossible for the "management position" to ever eventuate for such a large number of people.

I totally agree with the above report. I thank the writer of the report for sharing their story and allowing me to avoid wasting any more than 5 hours of my life with Mr Pun. Avoid Steve Pun, SP Marketing Limited, and Xln Telecom Academy like the plague.
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#5 Consumer Comment

Confirmation of report

AUTHOR: Anonymous - (New Zealand)

I too wasted 5 hours of my life listening to the arrogant, yet persuasive, Steve Pun speak about the "wonderful" opportunities at the XLN Telecom Academy at 69 Bondway, Vauxhall, London.

After enduring this marathon sales pitch with no food or water, I was nonetheless suspicious but couldn't understand what Mr Pun was gaining from what appeared to be an elaborate con.

I got home and telephoned the number Steve had instructed us to ring. I was informed by Kelly Reed that "congratulations(!!)" I had the "job" and would be starting Monday.

Still suspicious, I searched for XLN Telecom Academy on the internet and found this report. The missing pieces of the puzzle instantly fell into place. As soon as I read that the 8 week Academy consisted of cold-calling potential customers under the guise of "management training" I understood how Steve benefitted from his scam.

This is obviously a pyramid scheme designed to exploit the unaware and obtain up to 8 weeks of their labour for free or slave labour prices. Eight weeks of recruiting customers for Steve with the impossible promise of a management position at the end of it. At no stage during Steve's 5 hour speech did he mention that his "management training" would consist of cold-calling potential customers.

Think about it - Steve informed us that after two weeks in the academy we would be teaching a new recruit (someone beginning week one in the academy) what we had learnt in the previous two weeks. By week 8 we would be teaching up to 10 new recruits. ALL OF THESE NEW RECRUITS WOULD BE FOLLOWING THIS PATTERN - TEACHING OTHERS AFTER WEEK TWO - AND SO ON AND SO ON. Pretty soon you are talking about hundreds and hundreds of people going through this scheme. It is obviously impossible for the "management position" to ever eventuate for such a large number of people.

I totally agree with the above report. I thank the writer of the report for sharing their story and allowing me to avoid wasting any more than 5 hours of my life with Mr Pun. Avoid Steve Pun, SP Marketing Limited, and Xln Telecom Academy like the plague.
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