|Getting Real in Unreal Times|
Getting Real in Unreal Times:
Pick up a newspaper or turn on the TV these days and the bad news will find you. While it’s true that layoffs and the credit crunch are changing the way many people live, the GOOD NEWS is that many women with Mary Kay businesses are experiencing their most productive year ever. Similar success stories have caught the attention of the media, which are noting the surge of women turning to Mary Kay and other legitimate direct sales opportunities. In a March 15, 2009, article, the New York Times calls direct sales a “recession fallback” for those whose career plans have been interrupted or for whom debts are piling up. In addition to earnings, says Joel Whalen, academic director of the Center for Sales Leadership at the Charles H. Kellstadt Graduate School of Business at DePaul University in Chicago, who was quoted in the article, the experience of selling and possibly leading a sales team can prove a valuable professional asset.
Read on and see what the perfect opportunity at the perfect time can do for you and your business!
Independent Beauty Consultant Amanda McCrary
Even “beginners” like Amanda McCrary of Lincoln, Mich., are discovering that a Mary Kay business is just the right size for this time in their lives. Profiled in the March 15, 2009, New York Times article, Amanda was cited as a professional who turned to direct sales for a little recession insurance when her husband was told he might be laid off. The couple decided to “go proactive” and create their own bailout plan, but with a young son and a full-time job as a human resources manager, Amanda couldn’t risk a one-size-fits all solution. She needed something she could work around her existing life. When she started her Mary Kay business in December, she found the flexibility fit in perfectly with her busy schedule and priorities. Now, instead of worrying about the future, Amanda says the family is using the money she makes from her Mary Kay business to pay down their debts and stash away savings.
So what do seasoned Mary Kay pros say about “working your way through” the current economic climate? Following are some strategies and tactics for keeping the smile in your Mary Kay business – despite what you hear in the news! Remember, you have the power to create YOUR OWN GOOD NEWS!
Independent Sales Director Kelly Canzone
Kelly Canzoneof Stanhope, N.J., in the Independent National Sales Director Cyndee Gress Area, was a successful psychotherapist with her own practice and a 1-year-old son when she decided to start a second business. “After years of education to achieve my bachelor’s and master’s degrees, my work wasn’t all I had hoped it would be,” she explains. Recently featured on CBS Nightly News and in other media as an example of a direct sales success in tough times, Kelly adds that she felt isolated having her psychotherapy office and practice in her home, where she “commuted a whole six steps upstairs and six steps downstairs!” Now, nearly a year after choosing Mary Kay and with the economy worse off than when she began, what does she think about her timing? “It couldn’t have been better. Cyndee and my Independent Senior Sales Director, Tina Hulsman, helped me chart a course that encouraged steady growth and now includes – some day – Independent National Sales Director. They’ve been awesome mentors who have taught me what Mary Kay Ash used to say, that you can eat an elephant one bite at a time. Hard work and persistence pay off in a Mary Kay business just like they do in school, so I make consistency my top priority!” Although the flexibility and ability to earn extra money got her attention, Kelly was most attracted to Mary Kay for the opportunity to mentor and empower other women. In the past year she’s become an Independent Sales Director, and she’s enjoying team building. “It can be challenging to overcome a stereotype that some women have of our business, but when I help them get the true picture, they see that it can be life-changing, like it has been for me.”
Before making a phone call or interacting in person, Kelly mentally prepares and “checks stuff at the door” so that nothing from her personal life interferes with positive communications. To stay motivated, she prays, listens to “hopeful and uplifting” music, and keeps reminders around of Mary Kay’s dream to enrich women’s lives. “I no longer see this as a great opportunity for women who want it, but as the only one for many,” she says. “No one can afford not to know about this incredible opportunity.” The support she provides through her Mary Kay business has spilled over into Kelly’s counseling practice and enriched her time with those clients. But she calls the extra time she’s spending with her son one of the most precious parts of her Mary Kay life. She notes that he’s learning persistence, too. One day when she was struggling to reach a goal, he overheard her and told his grandmother, “Mommy just needs to keep going. She’s going to be okay!”
Independent Future Executive Senior Sales Director Krystal Walker
No one does beauty like Mary Kay, but even Mary Kay independent sales force members may not feel “in the pink” all the time. Just ask Krystal Walker of Frisco, Texas, in the Independent National Sales Director Kimberly Copeland Area, who admits she was “down” a little over 12 months ago. No Cadillac, nothing much happening in her unit, and nothing on the horizon. By contrast, Krystal says this year has become the pinnacle of her Mary Kay business. What changed? A bright smile lights up her face. “I made a MAJOR decision that turned around my business and my life, forever! It all started when my pastor said ‘leaders are readers.’ I took the challenge to read one positive book each month, focusing on spiritual, business, personal growth, relationship, inspiration and financial topics. I realized if I kept doing what I had been doing, I was going to keep getting what I had been getting. When I work my Mary Kay business, my Mary Kay business works. If the phone’s not ringing, or I don’t have someone to call, no one is working! I now focus on others instead of myself, no matter what’s going on in the world. By the time I finished the third book, I had earned the use of my second pink Cadillac!”
Although she stays up on current events, Krystal doesn’t allow them to control her thinking. “I get loads of inspiration and motivation from Kimberly and my mom, Independent Senior National Sales Director Scarlett Walker, who both built their National areas during the last recession, I surround myself with more positive than negative messages, and I attend my new team members’ skin care classes to share the enthusiasm. One of them works a full-time job and calls her Mary Kay business her ‘backup plan’ in case she gets laid off. This is the time to build. People need personal relationships, great products and a positive atmosphere more than ever. A bad economy just gives us more opportunities to change more lives! My business has increased significantly over this time a year ago because I’ve stayed consistent. I adopted a ‘What am I waiting for?’ attitude. Now I’m working the entire month instead of waiting until the middle of the month to start. I’m sending lots of MKeCards®, holding conference calls, and coaching Independent Beauty Consultants in my unit.” She recently gained two new offspring Independent Sales Directors, and women in her unit generated 16 new Independent Beauty Consultant Agreements. “For the first time in my Mary Kay business, I feel like I’m working at my full potential,” Krystal glows. “I expect to be in Independent National Sales Director-in-Qualification later this year. My journey has just begun. We all need to remember that sometimes we have to go down before we go up. I’m not just going through life any more. I’m growing through life!”
Independent Future Executive Senior Sales Director Melissa Kopec
When Melissa Kopec of Corsicana, Texas, in the Independent National Sales Director Kimberly Copeland Area, decided to take her Mary Kay business to the next level, she sat down with her husband to discuss the impact her goals would have on their family. “We live in a small community, and to grow I needed to branch out into other towns. With all of us on the same page, I could devote more time and energy to my plan. My husband is in construction and his business is greatly affected by the economy. It’s reassuring to know that I have an open-ended earning potential for us and our two kids, as long as I work hard to develop my Mary Kay business.” She hired an assistant who calls unit members, checks e-mail – “all those things that before were bogging down my day” – so now she’s out in the field more. “If I’m going to be a Million Dollar Sales Director some day, I have to act like it to make it happen. Our family had to stretch a little to pay for those services, but now I have the money to comfortably afford them!”
Melissa tries to avoid naysayers. “I’m affected by negativity big time,” she admits. “I hear all around me that the economy is bad, even without watching TV news or reading the newspaper, so to counteract it, I pour ‘positive’ into my mind and spirit through books and Bible study. I also typed out and framed my goals – BIG goals that I never had achieved before, but knew I could if I just believed, stayed focused and did the work – and I put them on my bathroom counter so I see them every morning and night. On my Daily Affirmations Sheet I wrote out goals that I’ve now surpassed. I had to set larger goals to reach! My Independent Sales Director commissions have doubled over what they were this time last year, and my unit has doubled in size. I’m on target to move up to Independent Future Executive Senior Sales Director and should soon have two new Sales Directors-in-Qualification. But it’s so important for women to know that success doesn’t happen overnight. I have so much momentum right now, but I worked consistently hard for six months to build up my business before it started turning around. We live 30 minutes from the nearest Wal-Mart, I have a 2-year-old and a 4-year-old, my ill father is living with me, and we’ve had lots of other losses and challenges in the past year. All these things could be excuses to slow down. But I say, use your obstacles as stones to sharpen your skills!”