Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Cell-Phones For Soldiers

While perusing the Hometown Rag the other day, I came across an article describing the Freedom Rings Tour, a marketing group that is also collecting old cell-phones and donating them to a non-profit organization called Cell-Phones for Soldiers. Cell Phones for soldiers then sells the phones to cell-phone recycler and uses the funds received to purchase pre-paid calling cards, which in turn are donated to military personnel serving overseas.

The Freedom Rings Tour is sponsored by Metro PCS,  a national wireless communications provider and Huawei Device a wireless device manufacturer. The tour is currently traveling around So Cal, visiting various Metro PCS stores, hustling up business and collecting used phones. 

I thought it worth a look and tracked them down at a Home-Town Metro-PCS store. I knew I was at the right place when I saw this motor-coach:

The team consists of six (I think)  marketing representatives and a driver. They are on the road for weeks at a time and visit 4 to 6 stores a day. I met Sara, who is from the Dallas, Texas area. We discussed the various things that her team does, the daily routine and a little of the team dynamic. I noted the similarity between her group and my crew as it pertained to the working dynamic. Everybody on the team needs to be respectful, be aware of the emotional/mental state of team members and take the effort to get along with others. Funny how working closely with others and no means of escape forces one to be considerate.

Sara accepting used phones from a customer.

It sounded like the team has a pretty busy schedule, and that the days can be long and tiring. From my interaction with Sara, it is apparent that good "people skills" is a must and that people who don't have them don't last long in her business. She was a good sport, putting up with my silly questions and allowing me to photograph the coach and her team mates.

Two team members returning from canvassing. 
Note the product placement!

While several of the team members staff a display at the store, others mount up on Segways and canvass the neighborhood. Probably not a bad gig, unless it's 94 degrees (it was). I have to think the Segways allow team members to cover a lot of ground fairly quickly and also allow them to get away from loose dogs, a trait that the neighborhood they were working is known for.

After a few hours, it is time for the team to load up and move to the next store.

Three Segways, an EZ-up, tables and promotional materials. It all fits. Somehow.

The team has a tight schedule, it is imperative that they get loaded up and on the road to the next stop.

Good luck to Sara and the rest of the Freedom Rings Tour team. I hope they move a lot of units and even more importantly, I hope they collect a lot of old phones. Being away from home is tough, it's amazing how a simple phone call can make someone's day.

To donate your old phone, keep your eye peeled for this coach, or click on this link and find out how.

Thanks for reading,

Joseph R. Schmoe, Report-on-Conditions Inc, Schmoe Multi-Media Productions LLC have received no monetary compensation, merchandise or services in exchange for highlighting the above businesses, services and/or charities. The opinions expressed are thos of Capt. Joseph Schmoe and do not reflect those of the Kinda Big Fire Protection District, A JPA public service entity. 

1 comment:

  1. Absolutely love it :)
    Thanks for coming out to see us and getting our cause out there!