From restaurants to hotels to old age homes, no industry is safe from the clutches of the profit margin. We have compiled a list of the most astonishing company secrets as divulged by former employees! So, dust off those non-disclosure agreements, and let’s begin!
Last Night's Popcorn
You sit down in your seat at the theater, slushy and popcorn in hand, ready to relax and watch "Deadpool." You toss a handful of popcorn into your mouth and notice that it’s not as crunchy as you would have expected. Actually, it’s rather squishy.
Congratulations, you just got served last night’s kernels! A former movie house employee pops the lid on a common cost-saving practice for movie theaters: serving leftover popcorn. The batch — made the night before — is sealed in a bag and just added on top of the newly made batches to give the impression of freshness.
Beware of Beer
A former employee of a beer distribution company lets us know that they made sure to keep the liquid loss to a minimum and, on occasion, will send out a batch of expired beers in a pack of freshly canned ones.
This is a known market tactic, and the ex-employee goes on to say that if you are at a restaurant and something is “off” with the beer you are drinking, insist on a new one, and the likelihood is that the waiter will have swapped it out for a beer from a batch that was not repackaged.
Public Humiliation? Yes Please!
This is a deliberate play by television producers to get seemingly “random” things to go their way.
This ex-employee, who does not reveal their position for the TV show, says that aspiring singers for syndicated talent shows are all screened beforehand. This means that they have a selection of brilliant and mediocre singers that add suspense to the selection and, yes, handpicked train wrecks to sprinkle entertainment value on top of the whole charade. Contestants confirm this, stating that they had to audition up to three times before being put in front of the actual “judges.”
Stairways to Hell
Profit can really bring out the worst in people. It seems that this company was literally installing stairways to heaven. Being in the stairlift business, this company mostly focused on selling to the elderly.
They would then keep in regular touch with their elderly clients under the guise of client-customer courtesy. These courtesy calls were a total ruse, as the calls intended to eventually find out when the elderly client shuffled off the mortal coil. The company would then offer to remove the stairlift for the grieving family, only to resell it at FULL PRICE for the next client.
Passing It Right Into the Trash Can
The saying is that politicians only care about citizens at election time. This ex-staffer that worked in a Congressional office proved that saying true. When a concerned citizen wants to raise a point of contention with a politician, they are encouraged to do so.
However, this staffer claims that the instruction was to simply make the caller feel heard and then not act on anything. The politician would not even know there was a call. The only time anybody was taken seriously was when that someone was a donor with deep pockets.
Out of Sight, Out of Mice (Sort of)
We cannot help but wonder if this low-budget restaurant had a separate menu for their furrier and, shall we say, multi-legged customers, to make a selection from...
A person who once worked as part of the wait staff at this particular establishment stated that the mice, rats, cockroaches, and ants were kept at bay by leaving expired food tucked in out-of-sight corners! The secretive food parcels are meant to distract the critters and keep them from searching for food out in the open where patrons are dining. It seems like a win-win: getting rid of old food and pest control all in one!
Micky Mouse Doesn't Want Your Money?
This place is known for a giant rodent but luckily this one isn't running around the restaurant looking for scraps. An ex-employee at a highly esteemed theme park in America recalls that part of the company policy is to never say no to a customer. Yes, even if they demand free food.
An example the ex-staffer gave was that should you demand a milkshake, the restaurant or food stall has to prepare you one free of charge. Or if you claim you spilled your popcorn and needed a refill, staff would have to oblige with no questions asked.
Making Up a Mark
Have you ever listened to someone in conversation and wondered, “How did you get through school?” Wonder no more as a teacher that used to work at a private school discloses an eyebrow-raising secret: grades are sometimes fabricated. Teachers have one of the most stressful jobs, and grading dozens, if not hundreds of students a year can become overwhelming.
When it comes time to fill in report cards, and grading duties have fallen behind, this teacher insists that other educators simply come up with a mark. That should knock some parental pride points off the leaderboard.
Made in Lie-Land
A company in Europe handed their employee a hair dryer and instructed them to get to work. No, the employee was not working in a hair salon but at a distributor. Instead of putting the products that were originally made in Turkey out to market (with the stickers stating so), the company commanded the employee to blow dry the glue off. Odd? Yes, until the ex-staffer further reveals that they had to replace them with “made in Switzerland” stickers!
The distributor would then double the price for the products. Apparently, a Swiss flag stuck on equals big bucks up there.
Can't Beat Them? Buy From Them
This former chemical company employee discovered that desperate times call for desperate measures. The ex-employee had to assist in honoring orders by supplying their customers with their competitors' products when their own product shipments were late.
While this seems irreconcilable with sound business practice, it is actually legal and common in many industries to have an agreement with competitors to "white label" supply when the need arises. This even happens in instances where it would be cheaper to ship a competitor’s product rather than the company’s own. The ex-staffer highlighted how their marketing materials claimed their product was “the best.”
Nothing Is Really Organic
You might rather finish drinking your superfood organic celery, mango, and chia seed smoothie before reading this one, as you might have to swallow a little harder. A former staff member of a large grocery chain disclosed that the organic produce, which is meant to be free of pesticides, chemicals, and additives, was none of those.
The suppliers of the supposed all-natural fruits and vegetables would simply buy regular stock and apply a sticker that said it was organic. When the employee brought this to light, the managers responded that all it had to say was that the food was *labeled* organic!
What Did Nora Ever Do to Them?
Come in Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, and Tango. The headsets employees are expected to wear at major clothing retailers also serve a more tactical use. An ex-staffer tells us that each brand shop has a different set of codewords for shoplifters, or, at the very least, suspected shoplifters.
In this instance, this particular company uses the word "Nora" to alert other staff members about a customer with sticky fingers. Other shops may use the term "Hardlines 4." So, in the event that an employee walks behind you and you hear "Nora" and "Hardlines 4," make sure you’re prepared to pay for the item in your hand!
Locking Lips With Strangers
Notice a small smudge on your glass in your hotel room? Yes, that was likely not an oversight, but instead, the leftover sanitizer from the hotel worker five minutes before you arrived.
A pretty ghastly confession by all accounts, this previous hotel employee said that management trained them to clean as quickly as possible before the next guests arrived. Part of this “time-saving” demand was not to wash drinking glasses but simply wipe them out with a cleaning agent. Firstly, the guests do not know whose nasty lips have been there before, and secondly, the disinfectant must be toxic!
Care Companies That Make Money by Not Caring
Yikes. One of the few places that we wouldn't expect to see shady business dealings is in a care home. It seems like the profit column reaches far and wide into every industry and the seeming goodwill ones are not exempt.
An employee gave a shameful insight into the business model of a care home they worked at. The care home would contract with government institutions and charge them for having a certain number of care staff on-hand for patients. The care home would then understaff the daily schedule, effectively overcharging for employees who were not even working at the time!
See a BedBug? Just Flee the Scene
Good night, sleep tight, and don’t let the bedbugs bite! If you stayed at this hotel, the fact is you would not have a choice! An ex-housekeeper for a distinguished hotel tells of how she and other employees were to ignore any unsightly critters after she noticed bedbugs crawling on a mattress in a room she was cleaning.
Far from being appreciative of the housekeeper’s concern, the management scolded her and said that the process of sorting bedbugs out would be costly to the hotel. Tip: for the next time, take your sleeping bag with you when staying in paid accommodation!
The Oldest Trick in the Bourbon Business
How do you like your ten-year-old, aged bourbon? Diluted with tap water and less than a year old? Well then, craft drinkers have a great product in this distillery. A cynical ex-staffer recounted that the distillery that they worked in supplied "craft” bourbon when, in actual fact, they were deviously selling an adulterated version of another company's bourbon by adding water.
Adding ice to this drink meant the customer pretty much just had a glass of very expensive water.
Scarcity Effect Taken to the Max
There’s a trick with marketing that says people will make a purchase on the premise of losing out. This employee tells us that their management would demand them to remove as many items as possible after a huge sale week. This is regardless of how many items were sold or not. This gave consumers the impression that the stock must be really good and worth buying.
The sad fact is that the items were all stockpiled in the storeroom, waiting to be repacked in the store so customers thought they were still getting “a deal”.
Lower Their Expectations
It seems that testing the boundaries of customer patience is built into the business model here. A former technician at a car dealership lifted the hood on an insider secret: making customers unaccustomed to quick service.
According to the technician, if a car is booked in for a service and the service is complete before the allotted time, the dealership will not notify the customer but instead, hold the vehicle for the entire time that is set aside for the service. This is to prevent the customers from expecting speedy service. It makes no sense to us!
Legal? Sure. Moral? Not So Much
Sadly, this former pawn shop employee’s secret has dashed any hopes we had that pawn shop owners have our best interests at heart. It might be common sense, but, according to this worker, make sure to completely format your devices of any sensitive data whatsoever before taking it to a pawn shop to be sold.
The owner at this pawn shop would unabashedly scour the devices to look for more “sensitive” photos for his own creepy purposes. The worst part about this is that it is totally legal as customers would have signed a waiver, giving the boss full rights.
A Third Party Can't Be Trusted
An ex-employee for a hotel booking company advises the world to cut out the middleman and make the booking with the hotel directly. The worker relays that the booking company will oftentimes make more money than the hotel does from the booking.
The convenience of using the service is apparently not worth the cost to the hotel guest. The reception at the hotel is barred from providing the guests with receipts as these will then display the difference in price and obviously be bad for business.
It's 1984 All Over Again
Schools are never short on high drama. A former school district employee gives a head up to all pupils and faculty: the cameras do not just record video but also sound! The upper management, including the principal, will use this surveillance to essentially eavesdrop on conversations and look out for any “dissenting” talk.
If that’s not unsettling enough, the school district employee further asserts that the teachers who are privy to this secret power become preoccupied with it and spend countless hours listening to their colleagues’ discussions.
A Doughnut Hell Hole
The classic morning smells of toasty doughnuts, freshly brewed coffee, and affluent. A former employee of a worldwide doughnut franchise remembered the time that management refused to stop operations due to a plumbing problem that led to wastewater overflowing through the shop.
Instead, they focused on serving the drive-thru customers while other employees frantically gasped and gagged their way through mopping up the hazardous waste that was flooding the premises. While the ex-staffer did not mention if customers highlighted the smell, they did say that management had them bleach the drains and outlets for weeks on end to eliminate it!
Ready-Made From Scratch
When stores say that their bread, pastries, and cakes are “baked from scratch,” they are not technically lying; they are just omitting when they were baked from scratch. An ex-employee leaves an egg on the industry’s face as they describe the process the baked goods go through.
No, there isn’t an army of dedicated confectioners in the back of the building assiduously whipping up pastry delights. Instead, the grocery store conglomerate orders tons of frozen loaves, cakes, and the like and simply warms them up.
Don't Trust Financial Betting Companies
There is no better use of the saying than this instance of “the customer is always right.” Financial bets essentially use the money to bet against the stock market, rather than horses or sports and the like. The ex-employee seemed pretty confident that there was a slew of insider information taking place as specific clients would continuously win against their bets.
The financial betting company itself was so convinced of these client bets that they themselves would place a wager against the very same stocks and, in the process, made millions of dollars.
Reporting on False Reports
This ex-staffer seems out of character divulging such sensitive company secrets. Their former boss roped them in on his “time fixing” scheme to charge clients for double time. So, to be spilling the beans on a public forum seems odd! By this employee’s account, they were a stickler for accurate timesheets and report keeping. Their boss turned them into an automatic accomplice by revealing his dastardly ways of getting more money than they were supposed to.
It does appear that karma found its way back to the boss as the employee reports that the company no longer exists.
A Bogus Check
The customer must always be right, even if you can simply convince them to be so. This previous retail worker says that if the items are not on the shelf, there is almost a one hundred percent chance there would be nothing in stock. Persistent customers, however, might insist that a storeroom check is in order.
The ex-staffer said that in such situations, workers usually go to the back room and have a short break, checking their phone or having a stretch before going back out to politely inform the customer that there is no stock available.
Don't Look Too Desperate for Credit
While debt collectors are nobody’s favorite people, we think this hack used by a credit company is quite ingenious. Marketing inventiveness and business sense came together to create a “priority queue” for clients seeking credit. Complete with a supposed $12 fee and checkbox, any client who requested the priority application would find themselves automatically declined.
The business decision behind the sneaky interface was to quickly filter out applicants who appeared desperate to get a quick loan. While this may have cost the company some legitimate customers, the payoff was probably worth it, not having to deal with defaulters of ill-repute!
Free, But You'll Pay for It Later
This particular tobacco company scraped the barrel of unethical with this shockingly shameless marketing tactic. A previous member of the company stated that the company would instruct its distributors to leave cigarette packs within reach of customers at the counters of convenience and gas station stores.
This seemed counterproductive as they would usually get purloined by curious kids, which meant a loss in profit. The sinister marketing tactic of the tobacco company was “a pack stolen is a pack sold,” meaning that the children would soon become hooked on nicotine, and the company will have secured a future client.
That's Capitalism for You
This ex-staffer gives us a glimpse into the almost unbelievable markup practices that companies implement. A product that took them a handful of dollars to produce had a retail value of *hundreds* of dollars.
However, as the worker retells, the company's astronomical growth would be its downfall as it could not scale up accordingly. All of the products came from the same manufacturer, and the packaging was between two and four dollars in most instances. So, as it turns out, beauty does come cheap!
A Tan With a Side of Dirt
Ah, time for our daily dose of Vitamin D...isgusting! Sun-lovers who do not have the luxury of the year-round sun usually settle for the second-best option to keep their skin bronzed: tanning beds. Customers pay premium rates to be soaked with UVA radiation, and, as a lot of exposed flesh is involved, one would think that hygiene is the utmost priority in a tanning bed salon.
Not so, as described by this ex-employee. To keep profitable, tanning bed sessions are booked as close as possible, which means little to no time to clean the bed thoroughly before the next client.
If you ever happen to be at work and see a disembodied spirit fixing the plumbing, do not rush to call the Ghostbusters; it’s just a ghost shift worker!
This ex-hired hand sheds light on an uncomfortably common practice: charging clients for non-existent staff. his company would tell their clients that a certain number of staff members are required to complete the job but would then send far less while not changing the quote. A far more honest employee refused to partake in this shady practice and was reprimanded for being “non-compliant with company policy.”
Cans Can't Be Trusted
A life hack that none of us ever thought we would need to employ! A former employee of a soda company spills the tea on this highly unsavory business practice. When a palette of soda cans is damaged to the point that it leaks liquid onto all the surrounding cans, the soda company does not go to the lengths of washing it off.
Have you ever noticed when purchasing soda, sometimes the bottle or the can are sticky to the touch? That’s due to damaged repackaging. When doing the dishes from now on, ensure to add your soda cans to the sink!
The Taxing Truth Behind Taxes
What’s everyone’s least favorite season? That's right: tax season. A former employee of a tax consulting firm gave us a look at the books and it turns out that in high season, the tax firms usually hire a bunch of poorly trained accountants to process as many tax returns in the shortest amount of time possible.
The firm scores in several ways by doing this. Firstly, because the accountants are not fully qualified, they are paid low wages. Secondly, the firm charges $100 *per form*. And finally, the firm takes a cut of the tax return itself.
Don't Call Us. We Won't Call You
The words “budget” and “airline” should, by now, strike terror into any traveler's heart. Take, for instance, having to cancel a flight ticket. These airlines do not hesitate to take your money, but when they have to return it, that’s a whole other story.
This story is of a former employee of a company that contracted with a budget airline to resolve disputes. Apparently, employees who work in this field are instructed to ignore customers! That’s correct. Part of their business model is to leave customers waiting for feedback for up to four weeks and, in some instances, disregard the customer until they request feedback.
We Didn't Want to Know This...
A little bit of soap goes a long way. And, by a long way, we mean preventing flesh-eating superbugs. A former hospital employee dished the dirt on a medical secret. When nurses, doctors, physicians, and the like check a patient, they usually scrub their hands down afterward.
This is required standardly and sensible, but it is equally required for staff to wash their hands before assessing a patient. The employee recommends insisting that medical personnel wash their hands in front of you just so that everyone has peace of mind, and in the patient’s case, peace of not contracting anything nasty.
This one has a lawsuit plastered all over it. The company in question would be responsible for sourcing contractors for larger corporations to assist with their IT. The real shady business happened when this company began intercepting emails of their corporate clients.
By all accounts of an ex-employee, his company was doing so to spy on communication between their competitors and their clients, who happened to be in discussions with them. The absolute audacity was when the contracting company adjusted their quotes and pricing marginally lower than what they saw their competitors were offering in the intercepted emails!
Free Trial Rake in a Ton of Money
The free trials appear to be a loss leader for broadcast companies. But a former worker tells us that this is far from the case.
Built into the free trial model is the knowledge that a vast number of subscribers will simply forget to cancel their subscriptions and the automatic debits will yield the company millions of dollars due to this oversight. Even though subscribers might cancel once they check their bank statements, the company has already made an enormous profit.
Stealing Is the Purest Form of Profit
The key to success, evidently, is hard work but, more specifically, the hard work of others. Well, that’s if the business model of this game development company is anything to go by.
An artist that once worked for the development company revealed that instead of coding from scratch, the company would routinely steal code from other gaming apps. The artist would then have to design new looks and feels for the characters. The developers would then go on to build money-making schemes into the essentially stolen game.
Prepare your immune systems. This ex-employee from a fast-food fried chicken outlet gives the grease on just how vile behind-the-scenes is. The worker confesses that any chicken that fell on the floor – the very sticky floor – was to immediately be thrown into the deep fryer in order to “decontaminate” it.
And that is just the start. The worker goes on to reveal that chicken meat would regularly go bad and turn rancid. Not willing to lose any stock, the business insists that employees simply throw salt over it to mask the offending odor. Plant-based, anyone?
Best Time to Get a New TV
Here’s insider info that is more helpful than scandalous! Been eyeing that big screen plasma for a while but your pocket says no? Wait until the end of the year after the Super Bowl season. Why?
A previous employee of a major electronics outlet says that hundreds of television sets are returned for a refund as people only purchase them to watch the Super Bowl. The customers get their refund and the item itself is now marked down. The employee says that some sets can be bought at half price in some instances.
Mortgage Companies Don't Have Your Back
Many people, especially nowadays, find themselves in dire straits financially. Tragically, they usually end up losing the roof over their heads. In this case, this is not a former employee spreading the love on how to prevent it, but someone still working for a mortgage brokering company. They suggest that the first and best option is to hire the services of an attorney.
The next best option is to secure the record of the lien release, a lien being an official document stating the homeowner’s intent to pay back the debts.
Not Unbreakable, But Always Free
The hero we did not deserve but the one we received. This ex-manager of a well-known car service dealership hit the brakes on the misconception that brake pads have to be repurchased.
By this ex-manager's account, it is not only a faulty pair of brakes that can be scored for free but even brake pads that have just the expected and usual wear and tear. While seemingly a loss for the car dealerships, it’s actually a marketing strategy to keep client relations intact and have clients coming back with the opportunity to upsell to them.
Don't Speak Ill of the Call Center Agent
We just heard the collective gulp there! Almost everyone has been subjected to the obnoxious elevator music while on hold with a call center agent at one point or another. As if we are not going through enough by having to deal with customer service, now we have to endure Kenny G’s greatest hits played on a MIDI keyboard.
However, while not hearing the ear-grating music might be a relief, there is something far more sinister afoot: the call center agent can clearly hear you, whereas you cannot hear them! Time for all of us to become Kenny G fans.
Dropping the Toppings
After learning this insider info, we have decided that perhaps the route to go is to simply buy a Margherita pizza and add all our toppings on our own!
A former employee of an internationally recognized pizza house claims that the adage “every cent counts” was taken to the extreme. Managers are encouraged by the corporate office to keep an eye on employees who are too generous with the toppings. The cost-cutting exercise means that perhaps a dollar or two a day is saved, which means more significant bonuses. Yeah, we’ll go ahead and buy our own pineapples, thanks.
Paprika Lattes Just Wouldn't Sell as Well
That delectable peanut butter or peppermint swirl in your grande latte turns out to be a not-so-delectable squirt of synthetic chemicals. An internationally popular coffee house chain claims to add dollops of authentic flavor to its drinks.
However, as this previous barista tells us, not a single drop of real anything goes into the coffees. Even the coloring is faked as they claim that paprika is used as the colorant for their peanut butter coffees! To add insult to injury, the chemical dredge is far from fresh itself and is always frozen before use.
It has become common knowledge that perfectly good food and perfectly good stock are trashed. An ex-employee revealed that they were instructed to break and smash candles and the like before tossing them into the trash. Rather than distribute the worthless stock to employees, the company policy was to discard the items but first by making them useless.
Why? To discourage — or maybe disappoint rather — dumpster divers. The policy is insensible, but corporations claim that it is to deter staff from deliberately damaging items to score them for free. Clothes are also shredded so as not to sell cheaper.
Forged in America
You would have to have nerves of steel to work at this place. A previous employee who worked for the steel plant recalls how clients, oftentimes the government, would insist that only steel manufactured and produced in America must be supplied.
In the event that the plant did not have enough supply on hand, the bosses would instruct employees to grind off the heat number — a serial number that traces the piece of metal back to its origin — to hide the fact it was not American-made.
When Your John Hancock Runs in the Family
Before we judge this individual, maybe the sportsperson was simply avoiding getting carpal tunnel syndrome! Someone that used to work for a famous sportsperson says they witnessed his entire family being delegated to autographing duties.
What does this mean? This means that the family of this athlete practiced signing his signature and essentially forged it onto dozens of items of memorabilia to give and sell to fans.
Making Money From the Dead
Benjamin Franklin famously wrote that there are only two certainties in life: death and taxes. Well, the profiteering appears to go on long past the grave. A funeral home worker lifted the coffin lid on this sly trade secret: the corporation will insure their employees' funerals as an outwardly charitable gesture.
The paper trail, however, leads to yet another profit column. As part of this insurance scheme, the funeral home itself will claim upwards of thirty thousand dollars for each employee who passes away. Perhaps this corporation wishes that this particular insider info would rather stay buried.
Forced to Flood You With Fake Facts
A cold caller tells us how the cold shoulder from potential clients does not work. The since-retired cold-caller says that the protocol of the industry is to use semantics to keep a call list.
When a customer receives an unsolicited marketing call, the phrases “I am not interested” or “remove my number” are deemed open-ended legally. In order to be completely removed from the call center’s database, the ex-employee states that the command “put me on your do not call list” is the only surefire way never to receive another harassing call again.
When Luck Isn't Random
Luck may be a lady, but the television network employs that lady to ensure that their schedule goes according to plan! This individual once worked on the research team for a famous quiz show that would “randomly” pull people from the audience in a chance to compete.
As it turns out, those randomly selected contestants were far from arbitrary and were actually pre-screened for the show. If any audience paid close attention, they would see that the numbered balls, which supposedly matched the audience member numbers, did not even leave the contraption.
Hippocratic Oath? More Like Economic Growth
Whatever happened to the Hippocratic oath? Does it not apply to medical supply companies in addition to doctors? Not in the case of this conscience-stricken ex-employee, it seems. The company was responsible for supplying hospitals with endoscopes and, as part of the requirements, would have to be tested thoroughly throughout their lifespans.
To cut and prevent costs, the company would fudge “unfavorable” results from these tests and clear unsafe endoscopes as suitable for medical use. The ex-employee goes on to report that this is not a rare event but instead occurs daily.
Are you confused as to why your thousand-dollar piece of fine China arrived with a hairline crack in it? If this former employee’s testimony is to be believed, hold off before taking out your wrath on the supplier and instead cast a suspicious glare towards the courier company.
As recollected by the ex-employee, the handling process for packages at a well-respected courier company was far less respectful. They report staff dropping, throwing, and even kicking parcels around. This might come as no surprise as numerous videos have made their way to the internet showing delivery men doing the exact same thing!
Not Worth the Wait
The only thing worse when dealing with customer support than the dreadful on-hold jingles is the amount of time wasted waiting for an answer or a reply. Consumers will be mortified to know that the delays are deliberate.
A former call center worker says that managers insist that callers be put on hold while allowing more calls to come in. The method to the madness is supposed to justify the hiring process; if no callers are waiting, the hiring manager has employed too many staff members. Call center agents purposefully leave frustrated customers on hold in a sleight-of-hand approach to keep jobs.
Gaming the Furniture System
The staff of this particular furniture chain gave the term “employee discount” a whole new definition. According to accounts of a past employee, sneaky staff would pocket tens of thousands of dollars by exploiting loopholes in the system. For example, if a supplier delivered an excess item that was not listed on the shop’s order sheet, certain personnel would not send it back and instead, take it home and sell it online.
Other tactics included saying that customers negotiated a cash discount. In truth, however, the salesperson would sell it for the listed price and pocket the supposed “discount”!
The Real Cost of Storage Units
A previous employee of a storage company unlocked some of their “locked in” costs. The company put in as many profit points as it could throughout the storage process. The most obvious of these was their own locking system. They designed locking mechanisms that prevented customers from going to a hardware store to purchase a regular old padlock.
This was not disclosed to customers at the point of sale but only once deposits had been made. The employee even revealed that the rental was the cheapest cost!
Anti-Virus? More Like for-Scamming-You
If you have ever sat in front of a computer, you have likely spent one-third of your life shutting down virus and malware warnings. The seemingly altruistic anti-virus companies flood screens with alarming messages of potential threats, all in a marketing tactic to get clients to pay for their software.
Sadly, an ex-employee of a prominent anti-virus corporation has shone a light on a far shadier marketing plan of theirs: selling client data to third-party scammers. The scammers then brazenly harass the unknowing customers by deceiving them into believing their computers are infected and only the scammer can fix it.
Only One Room Left? More Like All of Them Are Free
For all your holidaymakers out there, perhaps start looking at tents instead of hotels for your next getaway! A previous employee of a supposedly reputable booking site spilled the beans on their dishonorable business model.
The worker spills that the company tries to convince customers that rooms are running out. This, apparently, is nothing more than exploitative marketing to create a sense of urgency in the prospective vacationist. Who would have thought that looking for relaxation could also fall into the “panic buying” category? We sure didn't!
There’s a famous franchise in America that prides itself on being the more “upmarket” bakery. Clientele expects that it follows the guidelines of a devoted bakery, preparing everything in the early morning hours before the morning rush and having crunchy, scrumptious, and toasty goods ready. By now, we gather that you have realized this is not the case.
Yup, an ex-staffer reveals that the secret ingredient is serving day-old to customers that, in some cases, have not even been refrigerated. And the stuff that is refrigerated? Frozen meals. No dedicated chef in the back there, just a dedicated “microwaver”!
Everything Is a Lie, and Your Food Is Shady
A food store employee exposed some secrets about the supply chain. That wheel of fresh-looking, Wisconsin-stamped cheese? The chances are that it was produced almost two thousand miles away in Arizona and trucked almost three or four days to land up in the stockroom of the store and then eventually on the shelf. Crisp, handpicked farm greens?
Forget the smiling farmer loading his fresh crops onto the truck twenty miles down the road from the store. Fresh produce is vastly imported, meaning it has undergone extensive temperature cooling processes, making it anything but fresh in the classical sense, at least.
Sales Are Old Wife's Tales
Saving money is a very costly exercise at this nationwide department store. A hired hand lets everyone in on a trade secret: sale items cost the customer more than the original price. How does the conniving corporation get this right?
By raising the prices before the sale, of course! If an item costs ten dollars initially, the store marks it up by another five dollars and then puts it “on-sale” for twelve dollars. Downright insidious but a proven profit tactic. The employee follows this on with the fact that most items already have a four hundred percent markup on them!
Protect Your John Hancock
Make sure that your John Hancock is a near-impossible masterpiece to recreate. A former employee who claims to have worked at numerous cellphone stores in Australia insists that staff would have no issue with simply forging the signatures of clients in order to hasten the subscription process instead of requesting the client themselves sign.
The same applies to clients’ highly sensitive documentation, such as financial records. Staff would also not inform customers of gifts that would come with the product, such as a complimentary game console, and keep the items for themselves. Rude! But understood.
Volunteers Pay in Both Time AND Money
The road to hell is paved with good intentions. A charity worker expounds on the underhanded way that nonprofits manage to get a few extra bucks out of good-natured folk.
People often come to volunteer, offering up their precious time. However, your time is not the only currency expected of you. A few NPOs use the opportunity of volunteerism to persuade volunteers to donate while at the event. They would then get these volunteer names onto donor lists and create a cycle of requesting donations.
The Cookie That Could
Buying cookies for a noble cause? Better eat as many as you can because they’re expiring soon! Or so the organization would have you believe. A displeased ex-employee for an organization that sells cookies as part of fundraising efforts asserts that the expiration dates stamped onto the biscuit boxes are arbitrary and the products themselves have a much longer shelf life.
Putting their money where their mouth is, the employee stated that the staff would eat hundreds of pounds of surplus stock throughout the years.
Hundreds of millions of children woke up every day to the satisfying, sugary shapes of popular breakfast cereal. While we cannot give too much away, this cereal had fruity hoops that came in an array of colors and, as we were led to believe, flavors. A previous employee, obviously also hurt from the lies, revealed that the multicolored pieces all had the same flavor coating.
That’s right: green was no apple, orange was no orange, and yellow was no banana! We wonder if that Amazonian bird was aware of this the entire time.
From Store to Table
Imagine being at a three-star Michelin restaurant and noticing the kitchen staff walk into the restaurant with grocery bags from a convenience store. The sight might cure your hunger pangs and thoughts of paying one hundred and fifty dollars for a meal. An ex-employee of a high-end restaurant lifted the lid of their very unscrupulous pot and divulged that most of the ingredients came from your run-of-the-mill general store.
In addition, the restaurant would remove the sticker labels from empty premium wine bottles, place them on cheap wine bottles, and charge the customer the expensive wine fee!
A Cider Insider Scoop
All the cider-loving folk out there have seen the adverts: juicy, shiny apples tumbling down a golden waterfall of sparkling cider. The marketing brains at the breweries would have consumers believe that the cider is created from the finest freshly crushed and squeezed fruit.
In reality, however, a previous staffer let the cat out of the bag and admitted that most major breweries import apple juice concentrate from overseas suppliers to make the cider. And the tangy apple taste? Mock apple flavor made from synthetic chemicals.
This Well-Known Clothing Chain Is Stealing Your Money
Who would have thought that multinational clothing conglomerates with a reputation for exploiting workers would also exploit their unsuspecting clientele? According to a former employee of a very (very) well-known clothing chain, capitalizing on “seasonal trends” meant duping customers into buying clothing items made from material of far more inferior quality.
The kicker, though, is that even though the material was not of the same standard, the price of the clothing items remained the same and, in some instances, increased. Next time you are at an outlet store, think twice about spending double your money for half the quality.
Only Attractive People Are Welcome Here
The slogan of this clothing company could be “you are too ugly to work for us but pretty enough to make a purchase!” An ex-staffer who used to work at a trendy clothing store took the lid off of its highly questionable hiring policies.
When managers were hiring staff, they had a guideline to hire based on the attractiveness of the potential staff member, and instead of having the title of salesperson, the title would be “model.” The most attractive employees were placed in stores, whereas employees deemed less attractive were assigned admin-related tasks.
Beware of Poorly Made Furniture
If at any time the legs of a sofa collapse when you sit on it, you do not have to blame your diet. Instead, blame the false advertising of this megacorporation furniture company. An employee who, for obvious reasons, did not disclose the name of the furniture chain, revealed that some low-grade workmanship was going into the manufacturing.
The couches were advertised as having dowel sticks and screws to keep the items robust and intact. The employee stated that simple staples and glue were used instead of screws and dowel sticks. Is that a lawsuit we smell wafting through the air?
Toxic Gym Syndrom
Gym memberships are just like toxic relationships. You give a lot more than you actually receive. Almost everyone pays for a gym membership and never uses it. Thanks to this former employee, you might feel less guilty about this codependent relationship!
It turns out that major gym chains that experience a high influx of the fit and fabulous all competing for a spot on the rowing machine have a tactic to discourage people from coming too often. And they do this by deliberately turning machines off and posting “under maintenance” signs on them. Fewer people attend, leading newcomers to believe the gym is far more available.
Smashing Your Stuff
If it’s not the delivery and courier guys smashing your merchandise, then it’s the overeager warehouse workers! This ex-forklift driver for a *very* well-known distribution megacorporation lets slip that in the event they are struggling to close a container, the trick was to ram it with a forklift.
Bear in mind that the doors could not close due to being filled with customer purchases! The obvious risk of damaging paid-for goods aside, using a forklift in that manner violates every single health and safety code imaginable.
Raising the Roof Prices
A noble roofer disclosed the shocking sales tactics that the industry implements. According to him, the markups are exorbitant, and most of the work quoted and undertaken is unnecessary.
He further states that there are a number of tactics a customer can use to ensure the cheapest quote, frequently coming in at *half* of what the original was. To make things extra spicy, insist that the salesperson climbs onto and into the roof to do their quoting, as they are usually reluctant to do so.
Air Crew? More Like Lie-Crew
Your layover just got a whole lot worse. Airlines will frequently ground planes without warning out of weather concerns. At least this is what they tell their unwitting passengers.
A staff member who used to work for an airline company says that most times, there is no meteorological threat, but rather internal politics taking place around staff disputes. Even a passing cloud can be put down as a reason for pilots not to keep the planes grounded. In the more hush-hush cases, something has gone wrong with mechanical or electrical components.
We Need Some Anti-AntiVirus, ASAP!
Irony found a new meaning with this antivirus company’s ex-employee. The employee was hired to write marketing material for the antivirus software, primarily, of course, extolling its superior capabilities over all other antivirus and anti-malware products on the market.
The staff had a rude awakening one morning when it was discovered that their network was hijacked and used to host dozens of adult websites, and the infiltrators were demanding payment to remove it! In a satirical turn of events, the antivirus company had to employ the services of another antivirus firm to remove the malware.
Full Disclosure: We Give You None
Get those dashcams installed! An ex-valet attendant says that valets would frequently cause damage to cars through negligence. If the damage was slight enough to not be noticed at first glance, the protocol, as issued by management, was to keep quiet about it.
The plan would be to wait for the driver to leave the property driving their vehicle. The moment the driver assumed the responsibility and was off the premises, all liability was off the valet company. He further states that if the tip was not good enough, valets would take the car for a joyride!
When Your Lawyer Is Stealing From You
How many lawyers does it take to...? Lawyer jokes have been a staple for centuries as the industry has garnered a reputation for being unethical and avaricious. This lawyer took that reputation to a new low.
An anonymous person who this particular law firm once employed reported the senior partner for an unscrupulous business practice: charging clients for reading their correspondence with the firm. The lawyer would open and read all client mail and charge upwards of a thousand dollars for simply scanning over the contents. The senior partner kept their job, and the former employee is now, well, former.
Hard Hitting Facts
Here’s a pro lifehack from a former baggage handler who lays claim to have worked at every level of shipping and courier delivery: if your bag can be dropped from six feet onto hard concrete and be ok, it’s safe to load onto a plane. Wait, what?
No, it has nothing to do with the cargo hold bursting open mid-flight! The professing professional says that baggage handling on the conveyor lines is a brutal process for luggage to go through and that handlers will often simply kick passengers’ belongings off the belts to be transferred. How much cotton can we stuff?
Stock Sites Stock Up on Lawsuits
Keep your camera gallery well organized in case this stock photo company comes knocking on your door. An employee that once worked at a globally recognized stock photo company gives us a snapshot of their ruthless business model.
The company itself takes no images. It does not hire photographers and has no creative license. Instead, they try and license as many images as possible and hire them out. Part of their revenue is actively looking for content creators that have a licensed image on their website or marketing material and suing them.