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What’s the Deal with Phone Jobs?

*A job training spoof sketch.*

BLACK SCREEN

EXT. OFFICE BUILDING – INTRO – DAY (1)

A tall, indiscriminate office building with a Summery-sky background appears in a low resolution shot. An upbeat, 80s pop style song plays as a brightly colored, vector logo slides into center screen: What’s the Deal with Phone Jobs?

FADE INTO

INT. OFFICE BUILDING – INTRO – CUBICLES (2)

A slow pan of an interior office with rows of carpeted cubicles, off-white walls, and a carpeted floor with funky shapes in bright colors. There are office-goers going about their day-to-day responsibilities.

CUT TO

A close up shot of coworkers conversing at the water cooler.

CUT TO

A close up shot of an office worker sitting in her cubicle emphatically taking calls on her headset and furiously typing on her keyboard.

CUT TO

An establishing shot of a suited man pointing at the phrase ‘Production is my Junction’ on a whiteboard and the room of office workers claps in praise.

BLACK SCREEN

The same logo, ‘What’s the Deal with Phone Jobs?’, from the opening shot appears on the screen as the music fades out. The voice of NARRATOR (30s), an indiscriminate male who is posing as an authority figure with an approachable demeanor and can-do attitude, introduces himself.

NARRATOR:

“Well, hello there, and welcome to the team. I’ll be here to help YOU understand the DEAL with phone jobs. Think of me as your cruise captain for all things dial tone, transfer, and off the hook.”

NARRATOR chuckles.

NARRATOR:

“Let’s get started.”

CUT TO

INT. CARPETED CUBICLE – MEET BETH – DAY (3)

An establishing shot of BETH (25), a smiling woman who believes that if she says yes enough times, something good will come of it, dressed in professional attire sitting in her cubicle.

NARRATOR:

“This is Beth. Say Hi Beth.”

BETH waves at the camera.

BETH:

“Good to meet you, everyone.”

NARRATOR:

“Beth will be helping us on our exciting journey into the world of Phone Jobs. To help us understand the DEAL with phone jobs, Beth and I have created a list that will work as our map that we will follow on our cruise. Beth, please show us the list.”

CUT TO

A close up of BETH delicately holding up a paper with a list on it that is slightly out of frame so all items cannot be seen. BETH points to each item as the NARRATOR lists them.

NARRATOR:

“Destination 1: ‘What Is a Phone? Island’. Destination 2: ‘What Are My Responsibilities? Bay.’ and Destination 3: ‘The Five Steps of Work Calls. Beach.’ Let’s sail on over to ‘What Is a Phone? Island.'”

CUT TO

INT. CHORD PHONE ON DESK – DAY (4)

A close up shot of a chord phone on Beth’s desk.

NARRATOR:

“We’re in the thick jungle of the island, not another soul in sight. The only thing before us is this device called a telephone. But what is a phone? How does it work? Well, this powerful piece of technology enables all of human kind to communicate across great distances with a dial,-“

BETH’s hand comes into the close up and dials the phone.

NARRATOR:

“-a ring,-“

The phone rings.

NARRATOR:

“-and a friendly greeting.”

CUT TO

A close up of BETH’s face with the phone to her ear as she answers.

BETH:

“Hello, this is the corporation. How may I assist you?”

BETH holds the pose.

NARRATOR:

“Like magic, it’s as simple as that. Now, not only can we converse across the globe, but corporations can reach and help customers from the comfort of their home. This is truly the age of technology. Now that we understand what phones are, let’s sail on over to ‘What Are My Responsibilities? Bay.’ All aboard!”

CUT TO

INT. OFFICE WINDOW – BLUE SKY – DAY (5)

BETH is standing with her back to the camera and looking out the board room window.

NARRATOR:

“We’re in the deep blue now. The sun is bright and the ocean is vast and murky around our powerful vessel. It’s here we’ve come to contemplate what our responsibilities are with our new phone job. Just like the mysteries of the deep, blue sea, the approaching circumstances of a phone job are unknowable, but if you search deep enough, you’ll find the treasure of guidelines that will help you through any uncertain situation.”

BETH turns around and is holding a small treasure chest. She opens it and a graphic flies out that says: ‘Information’.

NARRATOR:

“As the employees answering the phones, you’re the port to which callers dock at to gain information about this corporation. Be knowledgeable and helpful when guiding these seafaring folk through our systems and services.”

Another graphic flies out of the chest that says: ‘Problem Solver’.

NARRATOR:

“As the most informed representatives of this corporation, it’s your responsibility to save any landlubbers from drowning in any corporate issues. Be the lifeguard that supplies the life preserver and the ultimate satisfactory service that they’ll never forget.”

Another graphic flies out of the chest that says: ‘Positivity’.

NARRATOR:

“Finally, be the sunny disposition for their cruise through our waters that brightens their day and leaves them happy. A good impression is the one that doops the sheeple and avoids ultimately slanderous, admittedly on our part, legal proceedings. Now, let’s dock our ship at ‘The Five Steps of Work Calls. Beach’.”

CUT TO

INT. CARPETED CUBICLE – STEP 1 – DAY (6)

BETH is sitting in her cubicle.

NARRATOR:

“Here on the safe warm beaches of our office cubicles is where we’ll teach you the step-by-step process of answering the phone. Our lovely Beth will demonstrate for us. Let us begin.”

The phone rings and BETH looks to the camera.

NARRATOR:

“Step 1: Be of Assistance.”

BETH picks up the phone.

BETH:

“Hello, how can I be of assistance?”

ANONYMOUS MALE CUSTOMER:

“Why did you let the bad actions of another employee happen to me?”

BETH looks to camera inquisitively.

NARRATOR:

“Be of assistance.”

BETH:

“Really?”

CUT TO

INT. CARPETED CUBICLE – STEP 2 – DAY (7)

The phone rings and BETH looks to the camera.

NARRATOR:

“Step 2: Be Their Therapist.”

BETH picks up the phone, hesitates as she processes Step 2 then greets the caller.

BETH:

“Hello, how can I be of assistance?”

ANONYMOUS MALE CUSTOMER:

“I’m just really struggling emotionally.”

BETH looks to camera with an expression that shows true incredulity.

NARRATOR:

“The-ra-py.”

BETH:

“Would you like to talk about it?”

CUT TO

A considerable amount of time passes that would have BETH considering therapy. She is in a slightly slumped position, resting her elbows on the desk and one hand is supporting her head and the other is gripping the phone as it rests against her ear.

ANONYMOUS MALE CUSTOMER:

“Not a lot of people know that the whale noises they fall asleep to are from whale sex, but I still find whale sex relaxing.”

BETH face plants flat onto her desk. In a muffled voice she responds.

BETH:

“How does that make you feel?”

CUT TO

INT. CARPETED CUBICLE – STEP 3 – DAY (8)

The phone rings and BETH looks to the camera with a blank expression.

NARRATOR:

“Step 3: Remember You’re Easily Replaced.”

BETH:

“What?”

CUT TO

INT. CARPETED CUBICLE – STEP 4 – DAY (9)

The phone rings and BETH is bored and typing absentmindedly on her desk computer.

NARRATOR:

“Step 4: Take It.”

BETH lazily slides her office chair over to the phone and picks it up.

BETH:

“Hello, how can I be of assistance?”

CUT TO

BETH has her feet up on the desk with the phone crooked between her shoulder and her ear as she twists the phone chord with one finger.

ANONYMOUS FEMALE CUSTOMER:

“…and the procedure is inefficient. So, if you listen to my outside, uninformed input, your company will greatly improve.”

BETH:

“…”

ANONYMOUS FEMALE CUSTOMER:

“Are you even listening to me?”

BETH:

“Yes ma’am but as I stated before, I don’t handle the complaints, and I’d be happy to transfer you over to the department that does.”

ANONYMOUS FEMALE CUSTOMER:

“I’m not going to wait an hour to talk to someone else. I can just tell you, and you can send the feedback on.”

BETH glances over to camera with attitude.

NARRATOR:

“Take it.”

BETH:

“I can’t do that, but I can listen if you want or transfer your call to the right department.”

ANONYMOUS FEMALE CUSTOMER:

“THIS IS WHAT’S WRONG WITH CORPORATE AMERICA!”

CUT TO

INT. CARPETED CUBICLE – STEP 5 – DAY (10)

BETH is looking up at the clock that reads 11:15 a.m.

NARRATOR:

“Step 5: Overtime Is Required.”

CUT TO

Establishing shot of cubicle and BETH is no longer there. The chair is spinning rapidly.

NARRATOR:

“Why does everyone leave after Step 5?”

BLACK SCREEN

Published inSketch

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