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MSE News: A confession: I've mis-sold PPI

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  • marshallka
    marshallka Posts: 14,585 Forumite
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    How do you qualify that?

    I like advising and selling what people need. I spent a large part of my career doing it. At no time was I ever motivated by commission. I liked my salary. The sales jobs I occupied were designed to yield long-term business relationships. Any commission was just bunce.

    So I say you are wrong. The "sales people" you refer to are the ones in financial services especially that tend to become spivs in a few short years. Their jobs are designed with low salaries and the chance of doubling it with commission in order to tempt them to rip people off. That's what they did.

    Shame on their employers for developing businesses and "jobs" to exploit exactly this, and shame on those sales people who "grew" to spout the cr*p about what a successful sales person looks like so that eventually people with consciences were not required.

    I again reiterate that MOST (not every!!) sales people are motivated by money. Its the incentive to sell. If you google what makes a good sales person then it is mostly written that they sell better when they have incentives of COMMISSION. Be it PPI or double glazing. Money is a motivater.

    Just my view and I can bet i am not the only person that thinks this way. Sales jobs are advertised mostly

    "would you like to earn between so much and so much money per month"..... says it all to me.

    Glad that you obviously were not and put the customer first but where single premiums were concerned, it was never the customer that was put first and foremost. They were a rip off and that is why we now have all this. Not all insurance is a rip off, but single premiums were only profitable to the seller and put the customer into more needless debt.
  • 2sides2everystory
    2sides2everystory Posts: 1,744 Forumite
    edited 8 May 2011 at 3:42PM
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    Marshalka, I am not really disagreeing with you in assessing what type of people we have now got as a status quo in sales jobs. Of course I know how obvious 'sales jobs' are habitually advertised. But there are still some highly successful organisations where this is not the norm in their culture. I hear that Apple may be one fine example. Anyone able to expand on that one? I've never had an urge for an ipod, iphone or macbook so have not been in (I am currently building an urge for an ipad 2 !), but how do people find their nearest Apple Store compared to their bank for example?

    Trouble is, for every spiv in a bank branch where ultimately they have been tempted sooner or later by brainwash to discard their conscience as 'part of a bad attitude', and to start following the company line on sales performance standards with hardly a blink for service standards, there are ten who slave away in supporting roles including people in the same roles as the spivs who take the flack for spending too much time handling complaints and making sure easily confused senior citizens are treated right - that's often called 'wasting valuable selling time' and the errant sales persons are often advised that "others" (faceless others in most cases) are employed to deal with the time-consuming servicing stuff. Also in the spiv supporting entourage are appointment making supporters of the type dunstonh described, many who are actually in roles of a non-selling type e.g. the cashiers at a bank who spot large transactions and "invite" you to to see a Financial Planning or Investments person using all kinds of personally developed and largely unregulated language to persuade you it is a good idea.

    These people will often be "buddied up" with "sellers" and "specialists" and will receive extra reward if products are ultimately sold. You may then find that some of the lowest paid in the bank sometimes get hooked on modest enhancements to their salaries each month and will even actively complain about being buddied with a seller who is not a spiv.

    I tell you, there are very few innocents at the banks if they have survived. Either they have somehow made themselves partially unassailable or indispensable via technical specialisation, or are good at remaining grey, or at forming alliances using short skirts or other types of charm, or they have to one extent or another been consciously feeding the rotten machine that we are complaining about.

    When you are next queuing outside your branch before they open, take a peek at what is happening inside. Group hugs? Training? Notices of the Day? Ra Ra sessions? Discussion of particular customers business who are coming in today? Everyone is involved and due to mobility of staff most banks now seem to have little compunction about doing it (and I don't mean "Training" in the sense you might think - I mean something further down the line i.e. towards a cultural penchant for a shade of brainwashing). That they might all do it now doesn't make it right, either.

    Yet everyone in the bank takes part and very few are true to themselves when they do so, unless they've been there long enough for it to have been second nature of course :rotfl:, and that's when they might then never find the need to come to confession.
  • Spuds2011
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    I worked for a top 4 bank for 16 years and left because i couldn't stand all the 'miss selling' basically you were targeted on selling products that brought money into the bank - you got points for each product . A Loan would only be worth alot of points if you managed to sell the insurance / you would literally get hundreds of points with the protection - and a handful if you sold it without- you were told to go and get the branch manager if it looked like someone wasn't going to take the protection - basically they'd refuse to give the loan without it. Students were given credit cards with s student account and told they had to have the card - " just put it in a drawer " yeh right - we all know you only need a rainy day and that card was going shopping !!! I could write a book on all that went on - it makes my blood boil now when I'm in a bank and I here staff trying to sell products to people - I worked with a girl that would say " computer says here that you qualify for a credit card - do you want one? No- just hang on I've got to input that "
    You had to input everything u offered a customer so that there was a trail - there was a list of things on that customers profile screen that you had to offer n then document - each customer was targeted - I hated it in the end - I was relieved to leave and go to a job that wasn't hard sell and meant I could sleep soundly at night !!!
  • Farmiloe1980
    Farmiloe1980 Posts: 37 Forumite
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    dunstonh wrote: »
    They are friendly society savings plans. Not life assurance plans.

    That would be one of the easiest complaints they could ever reject. There is no harm not understanding what you have got but it sounds like someone in your office is spreading misinformation and causing trouble.

    The fact that most friendly society plans are pretty naff is irrelevant. If you use a sales rep then you get what the sales rep offers. If you wanted best advice you should have used an IFA.

    The policys were taken out with the Communcation Workers Friendly Society (CWFS).

    The salesman who is an ex postman/union rep sold them as 'savings policys' and told people the minimum you put in is the minimum you get back.
    It turns out they are life assurence/insurance policys with savings attached if your still alive at the end of the term which range from 10 - 30 years.
    There is a cost involved for the life part of it but this was never discussed.
    We get bonus certificates every year but these are only paying back your own money first
    If he had gone round the office asking who wanted life insurance sobody would have be interested, but change it to savings schemes were you save for so many years, money comes out of your wages so you don't notice it and then get a maturity cheque in x amount of years and people are more interested.

    When you say someone is spreading misinformation, what did you mean in terms of what i had originally said?
    How you you define a friendly society plan?

    There is more to me explaining this then this short snippet but i don't think its right that we could be fobbed off easily as you put it.
    It has a similar feel to this PPI stuff.

    So far 23 people now all feel these have been mis-sold to us, i haven't found one person who has said 'yeah i know its life assurance and i get a maturity cheque at the end if im still alive'

    Everyone believes they will get (just like a bank/savings account) every single penny back of what you put in plus something on top.
    However for everyone this is not the case.
  • dunstonh
    dunstonh Posts: 116,693 Forumite
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    It turns out they are life assurence/insurance policys with savings attached if your still alive at the end of the term which range from 10 - 30 years.

    You say they were friendly society plans then you say they are life policies. Which is it?

    Friendly society plans often have an element of life assurance to cover the basic sum assured to which the bonuses are added to. That they is the way they have been for generations. That doesnt make them life policies though.
    There is a cost involved for the life part of it but this was never discussed.

    Of course there is a cost. That part of the return is guaranteed. If you are not paying for it then who will?
    If he had gone round the office asking who wanted life insurance sobody would have be interested, but change it to savings schemes were you save for so many years, money comes out of your wages so you don't notice it and then get a maturity cheque in x amount of years and people are more interested.

    Why would he go around talking about life assurance when he is talking about friendly society savings plans?
    When you say someone is spreading misinformation, what did you mean in terms of what i had originally said?

    I suggest that someone in your office has got the wrong end of the stick on how these plans work and is spreading wrong information.
    How you you define a friendly society plan?

    They are defined by law. There is no interpretation required.
    There is more to me explaining this then this short snippet but i don't think its right that we could be fobbed off easily as you put it.

    Only because it appears you dont understand it. Thats understandable but to then class it as a complaint is just wrong.
    It has a similar feel to this PPI stuff.

    Not even close
    1 - it isnt PPI.
    2 - it was set up under an advice process
    3 - it does what it says it does.
    o far 23 people now all feel these have been mis-sold to us, i haven't found one person who has said 'yeah i know its life assurance and i get a maturity cheque at the end if im still alive'

    If those 23 people are being told the same thing as you then they will feel that way. However, if they were told the correct information they wouldnt.

    As I said, someone doesnt appear to understand what the product is and how it works and is jumping to assumptions and conclusions which are not correct.
    I am an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA). The comments I make are just my opinion and are for discussion purposes only. They are not financial advice and you should not treat them as such. If you feel an area discussed may be relevant to you, then please seek advice from an Independent Financial Adviser local to you.
  • 2sides2everystory
    2sides2everystory Posts: 1,744 Forumite
    edited 10 May 2011 at 2:47PM
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    dunstonh wrote: »
    ... If those 23 people are being told the same thing as you then they will feel that way. However, if they were told the correct information they wouldnt.

    As I said, someone doesnt appear to understand what the product is and how it works and is jumping to assumptions and conclusions which are not correct.
    I don't think you will find even 1 in 10,000 of the population who might even get close to knowing what defines a friendly society product.

    I don't know myself, and I don't think I know anyone who has one, and if they did, like these 23 they might not know enough about what it was to venture to talk about it.

    For 23 people in one place to have bought such a product is very unusual indeed.

    It means they were targeted and they were told something.

    What they are being told now is not the point. What they were told when they bought the things determines whether or not they were missold and I can't quite get my head round why 23 mates at the post office would simultaneously decide that a one size fits all friendly society product was a must have unless someone had made a very interesting pitch indeed :rotfl:
  • Farmiloe1980
    Farmiloe1980 Posts: 37 Forumite
    edited 10 May 2011 at 2:52PM
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    dunstonh wrote: »
    You say they were friendly society plans then you say they are life policies. Which is it?

    Friendly society plans often have an element of life assurance to cover the basic sum assured to which the bonuses are added to. That they is the way they have been for generations. That doesnt make them life policies though.


    Yes is it a friendly society and yes it works how you have said above but thats what we are beginning to understand
    However we all were led to believe that we are putting away money each week just like you would a regular savings account
    Of course there is a cost. That part of the return is guaranteed. If you are not paying for it then who will?.

    This was never explained, we wouldn't have taken them out if this was the case.
    I suggest that someone in your office has got the wrong end of the stick on how these plans work and is spreading wrong information.

    Well that must be me then because all i wanted to do is save money for 15 years and benefit at the end.
    I didn't want any life cover and i certainly didn't want it at a cost to myself.
    If those 23 people are being told the same thing as you then they will feel that way. However, if they were told the correct information they wouldnt.

    If we were all explained it properly in the beginning, nobody would have taken out one of these policys

    We were also told that they're tax free which is £25pm but my policy is £10.06 a week (at his suggestion) for a start which makes it tax liable.
    I won't be paying tax like others cause there were investigated by HMRC and have agreed to pay any tax liabilites
    As I said, someone doesnt appear to understand what the product is and how it works and is jumping to assumptions and conclusions which are not correct.

    I started all this so that must be me but then So none of us understand the product and so we must all be stupid.
    I haven't even spoke to everyone in the office and i'm sure that 23 number can be a lot higher.
  • dunstonh
    dunstonh Posts: 116,693 Forumite
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    I started all this so that must be me but then So none of us understand the product and so we must all be stupid.

    Not understanding the product doesnt make you stupid. Making a complaint and getting 23 others to complain could be.
    I haven't even spoke to everyone in the office and i'm sure that 23 number can be a lot higher.

    Before you continue spreading your misinformation, you may want to learn and understand the product first. Otherwise you are just creating trouble where there is none. Once the complaints start coming back rejected and the correct information given to those people, it will just make you look silly. You can avoid that.
    For 23 people in one place to have bought such a product is very unusual indeed.

    Not for Communcation Workers Friendly Society (or other firms like that who are linked to roles or public sector workers etc). They often go into workplaces and do presentations. People then sign up from there. The public sector seem to be targeted more than private sector. Probably as a lot of the unions get a cut of the commission or have some arrangement behind the scenes.
    I am an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA). The comments I make are just my opinion and are for discussion purposes only. They are not financial advice and you should not treat them as such. If you feel an area discussed may be relevant to you, then please seek advice from an Independent Financial Adviser local to you.
  • Farmiloe1980
    Farmiloe1980 Posts: 37 Forumite
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    I don't think you will find even 1 in 10,000 of the population who might even get close to knowing what defines a friendly society product.

    I don't know myself, and I don't think I know anyone who has one, and if they did, like these 23 they might not know enough about what it was to venture to talk about it.

    For 23 people in one place to have bought such a product is very unusual indeed.

    It means they were targeted and they were told something.

    What they are being told now is not the point. What they were told when they bought the things determines whether or not they were missold and I can't quite get my head round why 23 mates at the post office would simultaneously decide that a one size fits all friendly society product was a must have unless someone had made a very interesting pitch indeed :rotfl:

    Basically it has the same name as our union which is CWU and is even run in the same building as our union.
    The salesmen were postmen allowed to go onto royal mail property and sell this product.
    He would visit once a year - going to a different office each day and so would probably get a couple of sign ups on each visit, so the 23 so far didn't take them out on the same day - it ranges over the past 20 years.
    I actually took mine out with the same bloke but in a different royal mail unit, i transferred into this one 7 years ago.

    Everyone has been saying the same thing about it based on what he sold it as which is what i'm trying to describe.
    I feel pretty confident that if i went to another office that he visited as part of his selling then i would find a whole load more people.

    When you are receiving commissions in excess of £100 per person then it is your interest to sell.

    Surly we can't all be wrong in this - i really feel we have been mis-sol these and yes based on the info given at the time of signing up.
  • Farmiloe1980
    Farmiloe1980 Posts: 37 Forumite
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    dunstonh wrote: »
    Before you continue spreading your misinformation, you may want to learn and understand the product first. Otherwise you are just creating trouble where there is none. Once the complaints start coming back rejected and the correct information given to those people, it will just make you look silly. You can avoid that..

    Of course i don't want to get people making wrongfull complaints.

    I feel i do understand the product now since i have researched it and spoken to them through phone.
    But it was never explained like 'what the actual product it' it was put in a different more tempting way.
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