Lim: Sales harassment

·3 min read

The days are few and far between when we find ourselves in the mall during this pandemic. Let’s make sure then that these days are spent in peace and relaxation, not in stress and harassment.

I’d like to call out the predatory sales strategies of some businesses leasing mall kiosk space—those with salespeople who lie in wait like predators and pounce on shoppers walking peacefully in the mall.

Whether it’s cosmetics, pots and pans or massage chairs they’re pushing, they’ve just gone too far—this time, with me.

Their kiosks are located in high-traffic areas so it’s difficult to avoid them. You can spot these predators immediately because even from afar, you can see them zeroing in on their targets and starting their approach.

Most times, I just shake my head and politely say, “No, thanks,” when they attempt to give me free stuff. To my mind, I have clearly communicated my response. I am NOT interested in what they’re selling.

Previously, most would just walk away. Recently, however, they’ve started to come after me—even up to some 15 to 20 feet away. I find this disconcertingly predatory. I do not go to the mall to be pursued like prey. I go in peace, to purchase what I need for the day.

I’ve never been a fan of the hard-sell strategy. It’s very off-putting for me.

Perhaps, the pandemic is making people desperate—at least, to make a sale. After all, you have to be really desperate to approach someone like me—me with a resting bitch face and a body primed for combat after years of martial arts training.

You’d have to be extremely brave,

infinitely dumb or supremely desperate

to ignore the warning written all over me:


I know you need to make a living. So, make your sales pitch. But respect people when they say no. Do not follow them like a stalker. Do not go after them like a predator. These are NOT sales strategies. These are acts of aggression.

In the last two instances, I had to say, “Please stop following me or I will report you to admin.”

We all want to keep the economy going. But this is NOT the way to do it. You persuade. You do not push. You smile. You do not stalk. You try to catch a person’s attention. You do not force yourself on a person’s face or space.

You respect their decision. You do not violate their personal space. You do not harass people. You leave them alone when they walk away. You do not go after them because you are a salesperson, not a serial killer.

Salespeople, despite what you may have been taught, you need to understand the concept of consent. Because if you don’t, then, it’s no wonder, no one else can. I know you want to make a sale but you don’t have to resort to sales harassment.

Mall administrators, please make malls a safe space for everyone.

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