Hygienists beware outrageous job offers

"Hygienists, beware of outrageous job offers!" is the title of an article written by Kristine Hodsdon, director of RDH eVillage.

by Kristine Hodsdon, RDH, BS

Ring, ring ...

RDH: Hello?

Company representative (CR): Hello, this is Joe from XYZ Company and I got your name from ABD.

RDH: Hello, how can I help you?

CR: Well, I know that you recently lost your job, and I have an exciting and unprecedented opportunity.

RDH: Okay?

CR: Well, my company is launching the most state-of-the-art product and service. What my company is doing has never done before within the dental industry. It will revolutionize oral health care and dental practices ...

[Time lapse of two hours. The company agent is still pitching the product/service and how “wonderful” they are.]

RDH: This all sounds great. What exactly are you asking me to help you with?

CR: Oh, to leverage your networks and connections from your former employer and sell my product/service to dentists and their staff.

RDH: I cannot decide until I understand the compensation structure/plan.

CR: Well, since I am not sure of your sales experience, if a lead comes in after you have visited a dental office, then I will consider commission or employment.

RDH: [crickets]

Scenario 2

CR: I do not have promotional or educational materials, or PowerPoint slides to send, nor will you be trained. Yet, why not try selling to your networks and past accounts, and pitch them on my products? Oh, and while you are in their offices, why not videotape your sales’ presentation and send it to me so I can determine, before I pay you, what you are worth as a sales person?

RDH: [crickets]

CR: Well, after all, this is a rare opportunity to get in on the ground floor and hone your selling skills. After all, there may be stock options available ... someday.

Scenario 3

CR: Because of your recent speaking experience on this topic, I’d like you to provide lectures for future consulting clients. I cannot pay you until they actually become clients. Yet, it will be excellent exposure and experience.

RDH: [crickets]

Questionable employment tactics

If you have followed my Director’s Messages, tweets, or articles, I consciously focus on the positive. Every now and again, I feel an obligation to peel back the curtain on controversial issues reported to me from within the industry. This focus is on “employment tactics.”

With current economic conditions, downsizing has probably affected a large number of readers, even if only because someone in your sphere of influence has been downsized.

The above scenarios, as told by hygienists, are accurate. What’s recently occurring, are that “some” (and to clarify, a minority) of the smaller companies are connecting with hygienists via social media and/or networking to determine if they would like the “opportunity” to sell their products/services directly to dental practices. The challenge is that many hygienists are asked to help out in the field without a clear and agreed to compensation agreement and or training.

Respectfully, I have heard from hygienists that it is extremely “flattering” to receive these calls; they feel validated. After all, there is certainly an emotional side of career transition, whether planned or unplanned.

Bottom line, if the offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is. A bogus offer promising a job after you “test” drive your sales skills in dental offices and/or jump through hoops first means that you need to move cautiously, if at all.

Kristine A. Hodsdon RDH, BS
Director, RDH eVillage

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