Chuck McDowell, Wesley Financial Group: Lawsuit Manipulation Tactics in Timeshare Fraud Must End
If you’ve been duped in a timeshare, you are likely to feel like you’ve been manipulated. It can be an overwhelming feeling to know that someone has manipulated you. The President & CEO of Wesley Financial Group, Chuck McDowell, left the timeshare industry when he discovered the lies and manipulation that were being used against innocent consumers by timeshare companies. Chuck McDowell worked in the timeshare industry before coming to Wesley Financial Group. Lawsuit actions were thrown at him when he came over to the timeshare advocacy industry to help people who had been taken advantage of by the very same industry he used to work for.
In an article written for UK Business Insider, writer Devon Delfino explores, “4 Signs You’re Being Manipulated and How to Stop It.” Delfino pinpoints 4 signs of manipulation. We’ll take a look at them and see how they align with the ways that some timeshare companies manipulate people.
Looking at the Manipulation Tactics
Delfino begins by talking about how manipulation is used in many parts of life. Unfortunately, most victims of timeshare fraud can attest to this. Delfino states, “Psychological manipulation is any action that’s designed to help someone accomplish their own agenda through deceptive or otherwise shady tactics. It usually involves creating a power imbalance within the relationship or interaction — and isn’t all that uncommon. “Most of us have to deal with it on a regular basis, from untrustworthy relationships to commercial advertising and political rhetoric,” said Preston Ni, communication coach, professor of communication studies at Foothill College, and author of “How to Successfully Handle Manipulative People.” The pervasiveness of manipulation can make it difficult to distinguish from persuasion. But there is a key difference, Ni said. “Healthy social influence occurs between most people and is part of the give-and-take of constructive relationships. In psychological manipulation, one person is used for the benefit of another.”” (Delfino, 2018). Delfino pinpoints the following 4 signs to help people determine whether or not they are being manipulated. Delfino also chimes in on how you may be able to stop it altogether.
“Their case is overstated”
Delfino begins, “Exaggeration is a common trick used by manipulators, Ni explained in a post in Psychology Today. If you aren’t comfortable with a direct approach, you can counteract this attempt at manipulation by focusing on the facts, as well as asking for more information and sources, he wrote.” (Delfino, 2018). Many victims of timeshare fraud may be able to attest to the exaggeration that was used by timeshare companies to get them to upgrade their level of ownership or purchase a timeshare altogether.
“The primary focus is on fear”
This sign might not be as common for those who have been duped in a timeshare, but it may have happened to some. Delfino continues, “Some manipulators resort to scare tactics to get others to go along with their plan, Ni told Business Insider. This could involve anything from saying things that play into a fear of rejection or monetary losses to threats of bodily harm or backlash if the other person goes against their wishes. This can create a heightened sense of danger, so it may make sense to use less direct methods to de-escalate the situation, like finding a way to end the conversation or, if possible, moving to a more public location.” (Delfino, 2018). Looking at Wesley Financial Group, a lawsuit was used to scare off our President & CEO Chuck McDowell. Rather than back down, Chuck McDowell stood tall. Today, Chuck McDowell is the President & CEO of Wesley Financial Group. Lawsuit or otherwise wouldn’t stop him in doing the right thing.
“The power imbalance is a big part of the discussion”
Delfino says, “Though this is less subtle than other manipulation tactics, Ni said it’s not uncommon for a manipulator to attempt to establish control over the situation by constantly reminding others of their own importance and power. This helps them seem more dominant while putting the other person at a disadvantage. It can help to respond by asserting your own importance, thereby leveling the playing field.” (Delfino, 2018). Victims of timeshare fraud may relate to this sign, especially if they were belittled by timeshare sales representatives. Now, Chuck McDowell is a strong leader at Wesley Financial Group. Lawsuit threats or actions by a large timeshare company didn’t derail him, although they tried to use their power to stop Chuck McDowell.
“You can’t get a word in, or they talk in long monologues”
This one might especially ring true with those who have been manipulated by a timeshare fraudster. Delfino explains, “When people know their argument is based on shaky logic, half-truths, or lies, they may try to position themselves as an expert and mask the details so you don’t have the time context to recognize their deception. It’s a form of “intellectual bullying” that Ni wrote about in an article for Psychology Today. One subtle way around this is asking the person if he or she can backtrack and slow things down so that you understand their argument more fully or have time to digest what just happened.” (Delfino, 2018). When you’re being sold a timeshare or an upgrade for a timeshare, you may find yourself being bullied in this manner.
Although we’ve gone through Delfino’s signs of manipulation, there is some recommendations on how to avoid it. Deflino states, “If you suspect that you’re being manipulated, Ni recommended asking yourself a few questions: “What may be the real motive of this person or message?” “Who benefits from this?” and “Who gets taken advantage of?” Negative or uncertain answers could mean you’re dealing with a manipulator. The next step, however, is up to you. “Most people have the power to reduce or stop the machinations of a manipulator in specific situations,” Ni said. “Awareness, well-considered responses, and utilizing assertive communication skills when necessary are keys to avoid becoming victimized.” You can stop manipulation by directly calling it out, saying “no,” and reasserting your power. However, that kind of assertiveness can come with negative repercussions, so it’s important to make sure it’s the right move for you before responding. If you don’t feel comfortable addressing manipulative behavior head-on, talk to someone you know and trust, and if necessary, contact the appropriate authorities to help you figure out how to proceed.” (Delfino, 2018).
Wesley Financial Group: Lawsuit or Otherwise, Our Leader Chuck McDowell Won’t Back Down
To read in more detail about popular manipulation tactics used by some people is irksome. We can see the correlation between what is being discussed and some of the things that happened to people who are victims of timeshare fraud. Our own leader, Chuck McDowell was a firsthand witness to the deceit and manipulation that was used against consumers before he came to Wesley Financial Group. Lawsuit or otherwise, he stood firm and today heads a leading company in the timeshare advocacy industry – Wesley Financial Group. Lawsuit or otherwise, Chuck McDowell didn’t back down.
Delfino, Devon. (June 4, 2018). 4 signs you’re being manipulated — and how to stop it.