I’ve often considered this question. It used to bother me when people would sometimes speak so critically about Vector, but now that I’m a number of years removed from being a sales rep, I think I understand a little better where the critics are coming from.
As best as I can tell, the criticism comes from a couple different directions.
It seems to be a normal facet of human nature that some people tend to make decisions or form opinions based on outdated or inaccurate information.
Fifteen years ago, when I was a Vector Representative, on the final day of training I was required, as were all sales reps at that time, to put down a fully refundable security deposit for the sample kit that I was to be issued. That is no longer a requirement for Vector Marketing reps nowadays, but even back then the deposit was always fully refundable. At any time a representative could return the kit and get a full refund. But the very fact that a deposit was required caused some to toss out the “scam” accusation, as they apparently believed that any position that required an upfront outlay of dollars was illegitimate. It was an unfair label but some people were bent on passionately believing it.
Just to make it clear, Vector reps are no longer required to post a security deposit for their product samples. Though it was a requirement many years ago, the deposit had always been fully refundable. Nonetheless, a quick surfing of the web reveals critics of Vector still claiming that Vector reps must “spend money” before they are able to work with Vector. Although this is untrue, some individuals apparently remain unconvinced.
There are some people who have a low view of the sales profession.
One thing I came to understand from my experience as a sales rep is that sometimes people just don’t like the idea or process of the business of selling. Sales is associated with words like dishonest or pushy, but those are just bad stereotypes. I occasionally crossed paths with people who had an intense dislike of the entire direct selling industry. I get it, people who work in sales are usually dependent on commission, so it’s understanding why this profession can be frustrating and can cause so much hate.
Vector is probably one of the biggest front runners of this hate on sales. One of the realities of Vector’s structure is that the company does aggressively advertise for sales reps, and some people are put off by this.
Managers also work with a large sales force and that can occasionally cause some challenges. I remember in my first summer as a sales rep our weekly team meeting sometimes had close to 75 reps in attendance. My manager worked what seemed to be almost non-stop in order to stay on top of things, but even in my office I can remember talking with a few reps who were disgruntled due to a mix up occurring with their paperwork or a personality conflict with the manager. Sometimes it’s these small things that become a point of criticism online, and in some cases the criticism is no doubt well founded. However, I know for a fact that the company is very responsive when any type of problem, no matter how small, is brought to their attention. Unfortunately, in some cases people prefer the anonymity of online criticism to the alternative of reaching out to someone who can actually help them with a solution.
More than anything, I think some people are just uncomfortable with things that are unfamiliar.
When it comes to working with Vector, it’s simply not a typical job. Its pay structure is not typical. Its product is not typical. Its sales force is not typical. Its recruiting philosophy is not typical. Someone who believes that work should reflect a 9 to 5 structure or else it’s not legitimate will be disappointed with the way Vector is structured. Someone who believes that pay should be based strictly on time clocked rather than on effort and performance will probably be uncomfortable with the way Vector is structured. Someone who prefers specific direction from a boss or supervisor will be dissatisfied with the way Vector is structured. Someone who believes that a recruiter should be focusing on eliminating potential applicants rather than looking for reasons those applicants can be successful will feel unsettled with how Vector is structured. In a nutshell, Vector simply isn’t for everyone.
One of the things that makes me laugh when I look back on it, is that when I scheduled an interview with Vector I almost didn’t go. As a matter of fact, I had largely decided that I was going to blow it off and just keep putting applications in elsewhere, but when I told one of my roommates that I had some hesitancies about the position so I wasn’t going to go the interview, he chastised me for being a wimp. His point was what do you have to lose by at least going to an interview and checking it out for yourself rather than making a decision based on others perception. Thankfully I listened to his feedback, as the several years that I spent as a Vector sales rep were as valuable to me as my college education.