collapse

* Recent Posts

Re: Foods of the gods by Ashmire
[Yesterday at 07:50:34 pm]


Re: Foods of the gods by Sefiru
[Yesterday at 07:44:26 pm]


Re: Foods of the gods by Sefiru
[Yesterday at 07:23:41 pm]


Re: Foods of the gods by Sefiru
[Yesterday at 07:22:57 pm]


Re: Pagan Traitor Storms the US Capitol? by Sefiru
[Yesterday at 07:08:12 pm]

Author Topic: Work and ethics colliding  (Read 1109 times)

Nalusa

  • Apprentice
  • ***
  • Join Date: Jan 2013
  • Posts: 22
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
    • http://theleylinewar.thecomicseries.com/
Work and ethics colliding
« on: January 17, 2014, 01:05:26 pm »
Hello! I hope everyone here is having a decent start to the new year. I'll be honest, I'm more of a lurker than a poster, while I do visit fairly frequently, it's mostly to read.

Please be prepared for a text-wall: this is going to be long.

I'm having a dilemma, and there are not many people I can talk to IRL about it, my family being Christian and pushy and my mate being atheist who resents but desires spirituality (his own words, as best I can paraphrase the many talks we've had over 12 years). So, I've decided to come here and get some input as best I can.

I'm quiet in my observances, I venerate Bast with a chocolate scented candle in a glass jar and offer cool clean water, and occasionally coffee, or whiskey/rum/wine when I have the alcoholic beverages in the house. I try to live my life based on honesty, and I have a desire to help people when I have the means to do so.  Like any human, I'm prone to selfish and cruel thoughts occasionally, anger and intolerance. I temper these as best I can; "would I like to be treated this way?", "do I understand the whole situation?", "am I being fair?", "has this person wronged me or those I love, or those who cannot or will not defend themselves?" Self talk helps me, but lately I find myself slamming my head against a wall.

I work in insurance. Property (homeowners/renters) Casualty (auto) Life (in case you or someone dies) and Disability (disability and health) producers licenses are what I have. I was eager, the coursework made the principles seem sound and good- and like many things the ideas are. To aid in indemnification in the course of a loss. I doug this immensely, I could help people, it's a responsible place of work and I felt like my goddess had helped me to find an opportunity after being out of work for nearly five years.

However: the company i work for (who will remain unnamed) is also who my mate and I have our homeowners and auto insurance through. We'd been with them for a little over a year before I has the opportunity for a job, and we liked them well enough. The process had been easy and we felt we had been well informed through it all. It was one of the reasons I wanted to work for them, it seemed like a place of integrity.

Over the past seven months I've seen things that don't sit well with me morally. They conflict with me at a deep level. My boss encourages us to quote people as having a perfect credit score over the phone or internet, to get them to come into the office. To me, this is wrong. Most people in my experience don't hVe perfect credit, and if I get someone to come in (who mY come in from a very long drive away, as we are a rural and poor area) and then I run their credit and the price jumps, I not only wasted time, I wasted a limited fuel and monetary resource. If I had ran them middle of the road, it would be much closer to the actual price, and even have had a chance to go down in cost. My boss doesn't want this though, she wants to get them in the door so she can bear down on them, ram the product down their throat and talk smack about the other insurance companies in the area.

In addition to this, the company I work for buys people's information in the form of "leads" from a third party company, who doesn't always use truthful or honest methods to get that information. It preys on the young and the old and the trusting. Ever seen the "click here for an instant auto quote!" And they make believe you will get quotes online? No, they sell that info and you get bombarded with calls for (in some cases) weeks or even months. On top of that, which I already find abhorrent, my company superiors demand that we keep calling these "leads" daily, even if they have said not interested, and to only let up with a direct and explicit "don't call here again".

This violates what I feel is right and decent behavior in how to treat other people. However, I feel like my Goddess gave me this opportunity, and I also feel as though I'm being an angry, pouty child. At least until yesterday when I found something appalling, and I think perhaps she may have been giving me the opportunity to protect my home and my mate, not the opportunity for work.

The office has a new trainee, she's a very nice woman- catholic but has not been snarky or even commented on my minor religious items, which is awesome, nor been preachy in any way. I dig her, she's easy to be around and allot of fun; and she's a fair bit older than I, so I have an opportunity to learn from her experiences and life-story. Anyways, back to topic.

We were training her on a quick and easy way to roughly calculate the value of an average home in our area. Since my home is the epitome of average, it made a good example. We showed her two ways- look up the i for in the county assessor a site and see the "improvements" valuation, and use that, or calculate the square footage of the home by 120 (the average cost per square foot of homes, in my region). This is just to get a number out the door, because most people don't want to sit on the phone for an hour doing a cost-to-rebuild survey. We, and they would prefer to do it in person, especially if we have an appraisal to look at. It's more accurate.

Well, while we were looking at my homeowners policy, I got a gut feeling that the numbers were not right.  We had come in with our appraisal when buying our home, did the full cost-to-rebuild, and it should have been correct. So, I had my boss show me how to access a cost to rebuild that someone else (who no longer works there) had done. This isn't something we are normally able to see, it's typically something only our boss can, but I asked and she showed me.

She also added "this is probably a good idea, because I bet it's wrong." My boss can be bitter and catty, so I decided whatever. It was mostly curiosity that got me wanting to look. I'm glad I did, but I'm also royally pissed. It was wrong, by a minimum of ten thousand dollars in the rebuild cost. I'm also pissed that my boss, who had been our agent for year and a half before I came to work here, thought it was wrong and didn't call us in for a policy review.

The girl that had sat with us and asked us all the details of our home had botched nearly everything. No sliding glass door, ten windows listed she we have five, no skylights when we have two, no hottub accounted for when we have one right out side that I can hear right now, among many, many other things. If something had happened to our home, we would not have been able to rebuild to where we were at purchase date. The kicker? The summer we moved in, there was a wildfire that was within visual distance of our home, less than 3/4 of a mile away.

I want to leave, and leave my agency soon (and take our home and auto policy with us) but I'm torn. I feel like I would be squandering the opportunity to work- even though I feel twisted and dirty working in the industry I do.

Sorry for the text-wall, but the input of my peers and what you would do in this case would be greatly valued. These are not choices to take lightly, and knowing what others see would help.

Also, I'm sorry for any spelling or grammatical errors, I did this on a phone.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2014, 01:07:22 pm by Nalusa »

Catherine

  • Sr. Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Posts: 990
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Work and ethics colliding
« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2014, 05:29:10 pm »
Quote from: Nalusa;136718

I want to leave, and leave my agency soon (and take our home and auto policy with us) but I'm torn. I feel like I would be squandering the opportunity to work- even though I feel twisted and dirty working in the industry I do.

 
It sure sounds like a sucky situation to be in. If these practices are company policy, and you know they'll never change, then I would suggest staying there only until you find another job. I mean, it's not like you have the option to NOT do these things if they're part of the job description. So I say get out as soon as you can, but don't jeopardize your own family's welfare by leaving before you have another job. Unless you have another source of income that allows you to pay the bills and all of that.

Until then, if you really feel like what you're doing is harming people, maybe you could find a way to try and balance that out? Like, volunteer work or something?  

Sorry, I wish I had better advice for you. Good luck!

Sefiru

  • Senior Staff
  • *
  • Join Date: Nov 2013
  • Location: In the walls
  • Posts: 2169
  • Country: ca
  • Total likes: 555
    • View Profile
Re: Work and ethics colliding
« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2014, 06:54:22 pm »
Quote from: Nalusa;136718

I work in insurance. Property (homeowners/renters) Casualty (auto) Life (in case you or someone dies) and Disability (disability and health) producers licenses are what I have.


I work in insurance too: I do administration work for in-force policies (address changes, notification letters and such). My company sells Life, Disability and investment products, no property insurance.

Do you work directly for the insurance company, or are you with a commissioned agency?

Quote
My boss encourages us to quote people as having a perfect credit score over the phone or internet, to get them to come into the office.

In addition to this, the company I work for buys people's information in the form of "leads" from a third party company, who doesn't always use truthful or honest methods to get that information.


This sounds pretty fishy to me. Does your company have an ombudsman or ethics committee that you can contact? Is there a formal procedure for bringing up concerns like you have?

It might be a good idea to contact the licensing and regulatory bodies for your state for more information.

And personally, I would look into moving to another agency and/or company and/or department (but then I suck at sales and should not be allowed direct contact with clients under any circumstances).

Nalusa

  • Apprentice
  • ***
  • Join Date: Jan 2013
  • Posts: 22
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
    • http://theleylinewar.thecomicseries.com/
Re: Work and ethics colliding
« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2014, 09:48:13 pm »
Quote from: Catherine;136772
So I say get out as soon as you can, but don't jeopardize your own family's welfare by leaving before you have another job. Unless you have another source of income that allows you to pay the bills and all of that.

Until then, if you really feel like what you're doing is harming people, maybe you could find a way to try and balance that out? Like, volunteer work or something?  

Sorry, I wish I had better advice for you. Good luck!

 
Thanks, I'm lucky enough that I work almost solely to get out of the house- my income is nice, but not necessary. We don't have kids and we are both going to likely get fixed soon to prevent any accidental offspring that may come along.

Volunteer work is a great idea, and there is a local pet rescue that could use some extra hands!

Quote from: Sefiru
This sounds pretty fishy to me. Does your company have an ombudsman or ethics committee that you can contact? Is there a formal procedure for bringing up concerns like you have?

It might be a good idea to contact the licensing and regulatory bodies for your state for more information.

And personally, I would look into moving to another agency and/or company and/or department (but then I suck at sales and should not be allowed direct contact with clients under any circumstances).


I'm a leased employee for a captive agent, so I do have access to an ethics line, but we are a teeny-tiny office and the only way I know to get in touch with them is to call during office-hours. I've been waiting for her to leave so I can call, but it'll likely be an all day affair so I need her to be gone for some time.

I'm newly licensed (2nd half of 2013) so I've been a little leery of contacting our state regulatory services for things like that. This woman is vindictive and if they don't keep me anonymous, she'll retaliate.

I'd love to get more into the admin part of it, to be honest, and I like going through Personal Insurance Reviews and seeing if I can help people that-way. I dig working with people, but it can be stressful especially when the claims department gets their knickers in a twist.

thanks guys! It's nice to talk to other people about it and get some input =D

HeartShadow

  • Adept Member
  • ********
  • Join Date: Jun 2011
  • Posts: 2195
  • Total likes: 3
    • View Profile
    • http://www.flamekeeping.org
Re: Work and ethics colliding
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2014, 10:45:10 am »
Quote from: Nalusa;136718


 
I agree with the "figure a way to get out" idea.  YES it's good to work, but it's NOT good to compromise yourself on a daily basis, and that's what you're being asked to do.  And DOCUMENT.  Document EVERYTHING you possibly can.  If she's doing this to you, she's doing this to other people.  Get a papertrail going stat.

You might care about the people, but it looks like your boss only cares about the numbers.  You'll either have to compromise and your morals will slip, or you'll need to get out because it's not a place you can stay.

I hope you find a way to get out.

Nalusa

  • Apprentice
  • ***
  • Join Date: Jan 2013
  • Posts: 22
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
    • http://theleylinewar.thecomicseries.com/
Re: Work and ethics colliding
« Reply #5 on: January 22, 2014, 02:09:10 pm »
Quote from: HeartShadow;136951
I agree with the "figure a way to get out" idea.  YES it's good to work, but it's NOT good to compromise yourself on a daily basis, and that's what you're being asked to do.  And DOCUMENT.  Document EVERYTHING you possibly can.  If she's doing this to you, she's doing this to other people.  Get a papertrail going stat.


I'm definately bending my ethics, and resisting it in the ways I know how- in fact, I pissed off the assistant to my boss' boss by calling some of the things we do harassment, and saying that I dont call the same people day after day to badger them.

Quote from: HeartShadow;136951

You might care about the people, but it looks like your boss only cares about the numbers.  You'll either have to compromise and your morals will slip, or you'll need to get out because it's not a place you can stay.

I hope you find a way to get out.

 
I was pretty much handed a "Get out of Jail Free," Card the other day. I'm debating on talking to her today in person or writing it up and turning it in since I can write better than I can speak.

Whilst looking at resumes in an attempt to find someone worth interviewing- and making fun of the people who wrote them- turns out one of the people was my sister. She was making derogatory comments, and after I confronted her, attempted to defend her remarks.

Time to leave!

Tags:
 

Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
1 Replies
2195 Views
Last post August 26, 2011, 09:15:58 am
by Nyktelios
8 Replies
1773 Views
Last post October 22, 2011, 12:18:52 pm
by SatSekhem
20 Replies
5404 Views
Last post February 13, 2012, 03:56:23 pm
by SkySamuelle
11 Replies
1911 Views
Last post October 24, 2013, 06:52:51 am
by sailor
8 Replies
1462 Views
Last post November 04, 2015, 01:42:00 pm
by Juniperberry

* Who's Online

  • Dot Guests: 19
  • Dot Hidden: 0
  • Dot Users: 0

There aren't any users online.

* Please Donate!

The Cauldron's server is expensive and requires monthly payments. Please become a Bronze, Silver or Gold Donor if you can. Donations are needed every month. Without member support, we can't afford the server.

* Shop & Support TC

The links below are affiliate links. When you click on one of these links you will go to the listed shopping site with The Cauldron's affiliate code. Any purchases you make during your visit will earn TC a tiny percentage of your purchase price at no extra cost to you.

* In Memoriam

Chavi (2006)
Elspeth (2010)
Marilyn (2013)

* Cauldron Staff

Host:
Sunflower

Message Board Staff
Board Coordinator:
Darkhawk

Assistant Board Coordinator:
Aster Breo

Senior Staff:
Aisling, Jenett, Sefiru

Staff:
Allaya, Chatelaine, EclecticWheel, HarpingHawke, Kylara, PerditaPickle, rocquelaire

Discord Chat Staff
Chat Coordinator:
Morag

Cauldron Council:
Bob, Catja, Emma-Eldritch, Fausta, Jubes, Kelly, LyricFox, Phouka, Sperran, Star, Steve, Tana

Site Administrator:
Randall

SimplePortal 2.3.6 © 2008-2014, SimplePortal