'That's gold!': Optus worker's awkward sales gaffe goes viral

Penny Burfitt
·Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer
·3-min read

We're all guilty of slipping into autopilot at different times in our workday, but this month one Optus worker learnt the hard way that some tasks shouldn't be attempted without maximum attention.

The very awkward gaffe by the customer care representative from the telco went viral on Reddit over the weekend, after they inadvertently sent an unedited script to a customer.

Optus worker customer care mobile phone sales pitch gaffe
A customer care rep communication over Optus' instant chat made an embarassing blunder. Photo: Getty Images

"The Optus sales reps sure are getting lazy..." the post read, with a screenshot of the conversation revealing the awkward misstep.

In the conversation, while referring the customer on to a new team to help with their query, the sales rep slipped in what seems to be an obligatory sales pitch, except that they forgot to specify what exactly it was they was pitching.

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"They'll have the notes on our discussion so you don't have to repeat yourself," the message begins, before the rep adds: "But before I do, I have taken a look at your account and can see [insert sales pitch]."

"Is this something you would be interested in?"

Screenshot of Optus customer care rep gaffe sending sales pitch script unedited to customer
The customer care rep quickly realised his mistake, but it was too late. Photo: Reddit

The awkward blunder was likely a case of hitting send before they had a chance to make edits to the generic script, and didn't go unnoticed by the amused customer who simply replied: "Lol".

A spokesperson for Optus told Yahoo Lifestyle this appears to be an open and shut case of a facepalm moment.

“We can all relate to face palm instances where we have sent an email or message without reading it first," the spokesperson says. "Regrettably, this appears to be the case.”

Reddit loses it over 'gold' exchange

Shared to the social media site, the exchange prompted over 100 comments from amused onlookers, most of whom defended the sales agent.

"Lmaoooo..." one fellow customer care worker wrote. "I mean to be fair... the amount of KPIs and target bullsh*t we gotta meet makes us crazy. Try working in a call centre and try slip in a "have you ever thought about getting mortgage or refinancing" into a call."

Another made the point that the mistake made the faceless rep behind the messages seem more relatable and human.

"This actually makes me want to deal with the guy more," the person wrote. "There's a human being on that keyboard."

Most related deeply to the slip-up.

"I've done similar with PRODUCT NAME on enquiries," one commentator wrote. "You want to punch your monitor the second you realise."

"Ahahaha, this is gold," another person wrote.

It's not the first time an awkward gaffe has derailed a company's attempt at generating sales.

Image of Woolworths Valentines Day display advertising cucumbers as gift
This Valentine's Day display backfired horribly. Photo: Instagram/justadelaidethings

Ahead of Valentines Day, a local Woolies in Adelaide was caught up in an embarrassing misunderstanding when a very unfortunate sign placement appeared to advertise a very bold Valentine’s Day gift.

The store in Gawler, a town just north of Adelaide, had erected the customary Valentine’s Day promo sign to herald the season of love for shoppers, not realising that Cupid’s arrow was pointing to a slightly less romantic deal on offer in the store – continental cucumbers for just $1 each.

Needless to say, once the funny snap was shared by Instagram group Just Adelaide Things, social media users’ minds didn’t seem to go to the prospect of a lovely Valentine’s Day Greek salad straight away, with bawdy jokes aplenty at the store's expense.

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