Being a Bluegreen owner at Big Cedar prompted my interest in working for their Outdoor Traveler Division which operates inside the Bass Pro stores. I was hired to work in the new Bass Pro Store in Olathe, Kansas. I want to make this clear upfront, I DO NOT hold Bass Pro responsible for what happened to me or feel they have any involvement whatsoever.
The Careerbuilder that Outdoor Traveler places makes this look like the sales opportunity of the century!
$1,200 per week along with full benefits for full-time positions. Wow! All while you're having a great time working in a beautiful Bass Pro Store. Full-time is 30 hours per week! Wow, that's even better!
The interview with the new sales manager confirmed all the above and I was excited to be hired. (At that point, I declined a position with another company that was offering excellent pay and benefits.) I've worked in professional sales for over 30 years and this seemed like I'd hit the jackpot. Was this too good to be true? Sadly,YES!
I was never scheduled the 30 hours per week. I was told to get 30 hours you have to have the most sales and it's done by how many hours you work and how many sales you make, better known as efficiency. NONE of this was mentioned in the ad on Careerbuilder.com or in the interview.
Being constantly told I had to out sell reps that were working over 30 hours per week and being given the best hours in retail(the time of day when the store has the most customers.) My sales were good but never good enough to overcome the numbers of the reps that were working 30 hours or more. I should also mention there are 11 sales reps and only 3 are getting 30 hours or more per week and will be awarded the benefit package at the end of 90 days.
Discussions with my manager were totally futile. He actually asked me, "What's the big deal with everybody wanting benefits?" I explained, had the ad stated part-time at $9.00 per hour plus commission, he would NOT have attracted the same candidates for the positions. He simply did not understand what I was talking about. Amazing to me for somebody that is in a management position, recruiting and hiring!
I finally called the Human Relations department after seeking the advice of an attorney. I was offered a phone call from the Regional Manager and the VP of Sales. That call came and the discussion ended with them telling me this is the way they do their hiring all over the country and their suggestion was for me to become more aggressive and sell more. I requested an arbitration packet from HR and was told it would be mailed first thing in the morning; to this date over a week later, it has not arrived.
No need for arbitration at this point. I resigned because there was constant bickering between the sales reps and the manager. The benefits were nothing but a "bait" to get people hired, and my paycheck was short. Deception at it's finest!
Bottom line: If you are even thinking about going to work for Bluegreen or Outdoor Traveler, RUN as fast as you can. This is the biggest "Bait and Switch" operation I've come across in over 30 years. They benefit from skilled sales people and the employee gets the shaft and told more lies than you can possibly imagine.
I plan to pursue this situation through all the resources I can locate, thus I found this website to try and help save others from the disappointment and aggravation I went through.
To any potential customers of Bluegreen, I'd say, don't become a customer. Don't buy a travel "package" at the Bass Pro store. If you want to see a Bluegreen Resort, go visit and ask them to give you a gift for your time. If you do enough searching you can find FREE trips to visit resorts and you don't have to go through the hassles of dealing with Bluegreen. Also, if you dare enter the drawing for a $25,000. giveaway in the Bass Pro Store; it's a way to get your name and phone number so you will be called by telemarketers about time shares and you're signing to waive your rights to the DO NOT CALL regulations.
I assumed because Bluegreen was in a partnership with Bass Pro (or at least they claim to be)that they were a reputable company. Wrong! I wish now I'd never spent 25K with them at Big Cedar. I love Big Cedar Lodge and I should have gone there on vacation without paying Bluegreen one dime.
We live, we learn, we need to keep sharing information to keep others from being ripped off. Companies like Bluegreen should be put out of business and that can only happen if people refuse to work for them or buy from them.
Duped in Kansas
Overland Park, Kansas