Do telephone research survey people always call at suppertime?
I've often said that every retired person in good health should have a part-time, self-operated business, as it gives some fine tax deductions. Part of car, phone, computer, internet connection, books, possibly some of house expenses, etc.
Here's some food for thought.
Is it true that telephone research people know when your supper hour/visiting the bathroom/having a (well-deserved) nap, etc. times are?
When one calls me at a time that I'm feeling mischievous, the person identifies him-/herself, tells me whom they represent, and asks me if I'm willing to give them a few minutes to conduct a consumer research project, etc.
I ask them how much I'm to get paid for my cooperation.
Oh, we don't pay the participants.
When I tell them that their employer sells the information for buckets of money, they assure me that this is confidential, that my information is not being sold.
I ask them if their company is not selling the information, who's paying the rent, fuel, light, phone bill - and paying them?
If their company is reputable, they are not selling information that can identify me - but they sell the aggregated information. For high prices.
I tell them that their employer is paying for their time, wisdom, voice and skill. Their company is asking to use my time, wisdom, voice and skill, also. But - is paying them, but not me. What's fair about that?
They say that they've never heard that kind of response before.
And rather act as though, in their mind, I have two heads.
I say that I've been a financial planner and retirement consultant for nearly 20 years. I sell no financial products, so am totally committed to serving my clients' needs. So - I have no conflict of interest. That means also that I have nothing to sell but my time. And skill.
I say that I've told lots of my clients that when they give something of value, they should expect some value in return. Unless they are cleaning up the junk on the street to make the city look better, or giving to charity, which I, as a former clergyperson, recommend.
But this research company is a profit-making enterprise, not a charity.
They have asked for some of my time, at a time of their convenience, not mine: they don't have an appointment, do they? In which case - I charge $60. per hour, $35. per half hour, $20. per quarter, or $2.00 per minute.
Please give me a postal or email address to which I can send the invoice, and how much time do they wish to contract for? Or do they wish to calculate the time at the conclusion of the interview?
Sometimes I get referred to a supervisor - and I have yet to find one of them that can give me a reason why their company should be well paid for my information, but pay me, the source, nothing.
And why should that person be paid for the use of exactly the same kind of contribution that they expect from me - but they expect that my contribution should be free.
Usually I end up giving them the information.
Occasionally one is so flustered that they fall all over themselves while giving the questions - and I sit there laughing to myself.
If I choose to participate in online surveys, at least I have free choice as to whether to participate.
And can choose to do it at a time that's convenient to me.
But - if I have half a dozen or so chances in possibly (how many?) thousands of having my name pulled out of the hat as the one to get the substantial prize, the possibility of being paid there is rather slim, as well.
Maybe better to participate in a survey system where each participant gets paid (a small amount) for each survey completed.
I use that argument with the telephone guys, as well: if I'm to do a survey, why not choose to do one where I may possibly get paid (a significant amount), or be sure of being paid at least a little? And can choose to participate in the survey when it's convenient - not while supper is getting cold.
Don't think along the usual lines - be willing to think out of the box.
I (think that I) saw a sign beside a clay road on the Prairies, that get really muddy and rutty after a rain, "Pick your rut carefully - you'll be in it for the next ten miles".
How often in life have we got used to travelling in ruts?
Be willing to think out of ruts, all.
Good wishes for a glorious spring - the best you've ever had. Find something each day to be thankful for.
Much easier here where we've never in 138 years (in the U.S. - in Canada 185 years) had a military-style bomb dropped on us than in dozens of countries - including Iraq.